Monday, September 19, 2011

Philadelphia / PA / USA Restaurants -- Ishkabibbles

Excellent Food, Local Experience
I was looking for something more local than Geno's or Pat's, so I took a recommendation from some locals and found a really authentic lunch experience. As I sat at the tiny bar inside eating, no less than 90% of the patrons that came up to the window obviously knew the guy taking orders by name and he knew them. This alone let me know that I was in the kind of place I was looking for.

Location: Excellent. Ishkabibbles is located at 337 South Street which appears to be a great area. There are tons of small, local, independent shops along this street. It is just a few blocks and an easy, very pleasant walk from the tourist area of the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall.

Food: The cheesesteak was outstanding. It had just the right mix of everything for excellent flavor. The bread was fresh, soft, and tasty and did not leak or break up. It ranks right up there with the best cheesesteak I've ever had. The fries were good, very similar to McDonald's fries except fresher and more substantive. The guy beside me got the chicken philly and it looked incredible as well.

Cost: Too high. My cheesesteak, small fries, and drink was about $14. The cheesesteak is huge, but they do not offer a smaller version. The small order of fries was huge also. Refills on drinks are $1, but the server gave me one at no charge. Coming from somebody that can eat, it was way more food than necessary.

Service: Good. The guy taking orders was nice enough, but hard to understand. The server was nice and friendly as well. I did enjoy watching the interaction between the patrons and the staff. It was easy to tell that this is a favorite.

Restaurant: This is a tiny, hole in the wall type of place. The bar in front of the grill has about 4 seats and the one along the wall has about 4 more. There is not much room in between. Most people order takeout at the window and take it with them. The bathroom is small, but clean and supplied. They have a lot of pictures on the wall signed by varying degrees of celebrities. The cook up each order as they come in so it is always fresh food.

Overall: The food and local experience are exactly what I would hope to find in any place. I did not rate Ishkabibbles as a 5 star only because of the cost and the too large one size portions.

All in all, I would most definitely eat at Ishkabibbles again and again. I think it would be hard to find a better cheesesteak anywhere.
 Scene from South Street
 Philly Cheesesteak, Fries, Gremlin

Journey Of A Lifetime

A blog about my Journey and my passion for travel.  I hope to share travel stories, travel reviews, life lessons, and advice from my experiences.  Unlike most travel bloggers, I regrettably am not currently nor have I ever traveled for what I would consider an extended amount of time (more than 3 months).  I have to get my fix in smaller increments.  In general, each calendar year I will travel internationally somewhere between 10 - 24 days and also take several shorter trips within the US.  I have a family of five, a career, a mortgage, lots of other real life responsibilities, and a borderline obsessive desire to experience and see all that the world has to offer.  I am living proof that it can be done and I would love to share how I make it work and hear from others like me as well to learn from you.  I enjoy independent budget travel (public transportation, home stays, hostels, etc) to anywhere and everywhere.  I love to go to places that most people that I know wouldn't even think of as a vacation.

I will only offer opinions on places that I have actually visited, so my posts / opinions / lists may seem limited to some, but will always be based on my personal experiences and not something that I read or heard somewhere else.  I do not think it is fair to anyone or any place to do any differently.

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