Thanks for all your good advice. We just had an incredible week of eating in Philadelphia. Before leaving we consulted our trusty Chowhounders, and got nothing but good advice!!
Monks Café, for a huge pot of mussels, a charcouterie platter with excellent sausages and amazing grainy bread, and of course Belgian fries and mayonnaise. The mussels were very fresh, and the herbed broth at the bottom of the pot was just as good as the mussels themselves.
Reading Terminal Market The Dutch Eating Place for juicy cheeseburger with onions, and apple dumpling. Im salivating as I write! These dumplings were perfect! Rich, buttery, thick but light pastry around flavorful (but not too sweet) apple chunks doused with fresh heavy cream. The dough was so light that it soaked up as much cream as we could pour over it. All this for under $6...
Also at the Reading Market, Sang Kee was serving a steady stream of happy lunch-time customers. We tried the duck with rice & vegetables. It was no standard Peking duck (it was given a blast in the microwave, skin and all, before it arrived in my hands) but full of flavor and very tender.
Azafran arepas with stewed chicken and raisins, fried yucca with fresh salsa, coconut flan. The waitress was very knowledgeable and willing to explain each of the dishes/ingredients. Top quality ingredients. Excellent meal.
Pink Rose bakery for luscious carrot cake and lemon squares, and as many of the generous sample chunks of macaroons sitting on the counter as we could sneak into our mouths! Everything was super-moist, with a perfect balance between light and dense. What a gentle touch!
Nan, a beautiful French-Thai place the service, atmosphere, and food were all excellent. Our lovely grandmotherly waitress turned out to be the assistant chef. Everything was excellent, but the crab cake special (available as either appetizer or entrée) was the best Ive ever tasted, made from real chunks of crab meat (no filler) with a hint of parsley, surrounded by an extraordinary beurre blanc sauce.
Rangoon - Burmese the fresh ginger salad - I could eat one of these every day! Mmmm
Tony Lukes roast pork sandwich, just walking in the door, the smell of garlic and meat was heady, and the sandwich was just as good, dripping with provolone cheese. Next time I go back Ill order extra broccoli rabe.
On the way home to Connecticut we stopped at the wonderful Rinconcito Peruano. Unfortunately, although it was still very good, it wasnt what it used to be. Is there a new chef in the house? The Aji de Gallina (last time, was quite possibly the best dish I have ever eaten) was quite different, much cheesier, without the perfect, complex blend of flavors. No ceviche was on the menu. Lomo Saltado was vinegary and delicious.
Thanks for the roadmap to an extraordinary week of great chow!!