Local Scene: PhiladelphiaWritten by Erin Friar McDermott / June, 2012
From Ben Franklin to Rocky Balboa, The City of Brotherly Love is fiercely proud of its hometown heroes who’ve broken with conventional thinking.
But for a city steeped in so much history, Jack Parks, Surfaces Manager at Fessenden Hall, a local Cambria distributor, notes that Philadelphia often surprises visitors with all the new things that are happening there.
DINIC’S Reading Terminal Market 51 N. 12th St.; 215-923-6175
This city may be synonymous with “cheesesteak,” but locals know variations on Whiz-and-Wit aren’t the best sandwich in town. Instead, try DiNic’s juicy roast pork Italiano. Fans have described it as “last-meal-on- Death Row good.”
GARCES TRADING COMPANY 1111 Locust St.; 215-574-1099 garcestradingcompany.com
Jose Garces’s six restaurants have spoiled Philadelphians with an abundance of exceptional Latin fare. But the best deal in town may be at his market-style spot. There’s house-cured charcuterie, sublime pastas and pizzas, and a cheese menu longer than most restaurants’ wine lists. Trust the chef’s selections for lunch or dinner. The topper? In a state with quirky liquor laws, this BYO has somehow managed to land a state-endorsed wine store on the premises.
XFINITY LIVE! 110 Pattison Ave. 855-406-4119; xfinitylive.com
In March, an expansive dining and entertainment district opened just steps away from Philadelphia’s three main sports complexes. “Because it’s so new, a lot of people coming to the city might miss it,” explains Parks. It’s already earning rave reviews and best of all, Parks points out that it’s just a 10-minute subway ride from City Hall.
THE CLOVER MARKET 12 E. Lancaster Ave. Ardmore, PA.; theclovermarket.com
Design lovers, take note. This carefully curated market pops up once a month in the spring and fall, with the Delaware Valley’s coolest vendors offering original art, artisans’ crafts, vintage jewelry and clothing, and the one-of-a-kind finds that can just make a room complete in any home.
THE BARNES FOUNDATION 2025 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy. 215-640-0171 barnesfoundation.org
After a long legal fight, Dr. Alfred Barnes’s $25-billion collection of Picassos, Van Goghs and Monets moves to Center City. Long a tough ticket at its suburban lair, the new Barnes is now challenging the Philadelphia Museum of Art and its iconic “Rocky” steps as a must-see.
For extra goosebumps, check out the Liberty Bell at night, and bask in the glow of the international symbol of freedom.