Giving back this year

[UPDATE: We raised $4725 dollars!!] Now more than ever, I feel a need to give back to my community, so I'll be donating ALL of the profits from map sales from now (4:39PM on November 23) through 11:59PM, November 29. It's an opportunity to buy a holiday gift and give back to some great Philadelphia non-profits (see the Philly Love Notes Etsy shop for more details). Your purchase of a custom Philly map will be a donation to the following organizations: Sunday Breakfast Read more

With all my love

Emma Fried-Cassorla Favorite Spot: Anywhere along the Delaware River Waterfront (but I'm biased) I Am: A Philly lover and resident, Montana lover and former resident, twin, Philly Love Notes, Communications Manager for the Delaware River Waterfront, hiker, climber, traveler, papercutter, iPhone addict, handwritten note taker, Crohn’s patient, scientist, lover of the Race Street Pier and slippers and family Years in Philly: Off and on for 33 (I was 30 when I started!) Current home: A studio loft in Callowhill with my lovely boyfriend Read more

And so we conclude

Cynthia Schmitt A photo posted by Philly Love Notes (@phillylovenotes) on May 20, 2015 at 7:05pm PDT My Love Note Can anyone remember that first moment they fell in love? How does one encompass the complexities of living in a city that's caught between New York and Washington DC? Even Benjamin Franklin, a hero of this city, spent most of his time in Europe. He did choose to die here, so I always thought that must have meant something. Edgar Read more

food

Love Note #82: Arthur Etchells winds down with oysters at Pub and Kitchen in Graduate Hospital

Arthur Etchells
Favorite Spot: Eating oysters outside of Pub and Kitchen during happy hour.
Neighborhood: Graduate Hospital
Address: 1946 Lombard Street

I am: Founder of Foobooz, and a Philadelphia native. The only food I won’t eat comes from McDonalds.
Years in Philly: Whole life.
Current home: Graduate Hospital

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Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Graduate Hospital 1 Comment

Love Note #80: JoAnn Greco suggests spending your Saturday morning eating a petite dejuner at Cafe Lutecia in Fitler Square

JoAnn Greco
Favorite Spot: Cafe Lutecia
Neighborhood: Fitler Square
Address: 2301 Lombard St


I am: New York-born freelance journalist specializing in urban planning, architecture, design, and travel topics; regular contributor to Plan Philly
Years in Philly: 21
Current Home: Bella Vista


My love note: Sitting outside in the Saturday morning sunlight, enjoying the “petite dejuner” special here — a (top-notch) croissant, baguette with jam and beurre, orange juice and, for a $1 more, a cup of espresso — doesn’t make me feel like I’m in Paris, it makes me feel like I’m in a lively and congenial part of Philadelphia. I love the stately rowhome, painted in black, that perches catty-corner from the cafe. And I’m enticed by the glimpse of trees over Fitler Square down the block, where the umbrellas of its farmer’s market beckons. Eventually, lazily, I will myself to get up to explore the park’s offerings, and then, to wind my way back east.

Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Graduate Hospital 2 Comments

Love Note #69: Esther Fox’s constant in Philly? Steve Stein’s Famous Deli in the Northeast

Esther Fox
Favorite Spot: Steve Stein’s Famous Deli
Neighborhood: Grant Ave and Krewstown Rd, Northeast Philly 

Address: 9359 Krewstown Rd, Philadelphia, PA 19115

I am: a Jersey-born, Philly-phlavored web-dev student at Montgomery County Community College, lover of food, Philadelphia sports and yarn. Oh, and I blog.
Years in Philly: this is debatable. I grew up in NJ but spent a lot of time with family here in Philly. I wish I could say I’ve been here my whole life, but in actual time, I’ve been here almost 2 years collectively. I wasn’t far over the bridge though.
Current Home: Tacony/Wissinoming, though I am a stone’s throw from Mayfair

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Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Northeast 2 Comments

Love Note #62: Headhouse Market in Society Hill tops LeeAnne Mullins’ list of simple pleasures

LeeAnne Mullins
Favorite Spot: Headhouse Market
Neighborhood: Society Hill
Address: South St & S 2nd St


I am: A recently married 30-year-old food-lover, who came to Philly by way of Nova Scotia, Canada. I love to cook, take in live music, explore the world, and share a bottle of wine and a barrel of laughs with friends. 
Years in Philly: 5
Current Home: Fishtown
My love note: Coming to Philly happened almost by accident. It was not in my master plan of travelling the world and never settling down, until I met someone who made sticking around seem worthwhile. We moved to Philly on a whim and decided to make a little life for ourselves here combined with the other essentials. In life, there is nothing more rewarding–besides love–than friendship and food. Headhouse Market symbolizes both of those to me. It was, again, almost by accident, that I made a friend who instantly became a favorite of mine who introduced me to two things: Headhouse Market and tomato sandwiches. 

All summer long now, I can’t have one without the other. Both are so simple yet so pleasurable, bringing a burst of joy into my day with anticipation and satisfaction. The tomato sandwich is one of the best things I’ve ever eaten in Philadelphia. And Headhouse Market is one of the best farmers’ markets we have in the city. It’s easy to combine them in my mind. I try to take advantage of the bounty of the market every week–especially the tomatoes–from the time it opens in the spring until closing in the fall. From the first sights of peas, asparagus and garlic scapes to the last dance with butternut squash and Brussels sprouts, the market is one of those simple places with the least simple offering of any “business” I have been to in the city.

The first time I went to Headhouse, I wondered to myself how I hadn’t been already. How was it possible that I had lived, cooked and dined in Philly for a few years without coming to this place filled with the most amazing variety of ingredients and goodies? I assure you, I am making up for lost time. I have some favorite vendors and some favorite items in general, of course. I run into friends I haven’t seen in a little while for a chat and a hug. I get to chat with the farmers about what’s good that week, while also chatting about anything else that comes up. I’ve yet to encounter an unfriendly soul at Headhouse. I find myself heading home with a smile and heavy bags filled to the brim with blueberries, raspberries, any and all squash, kale, asparagus, chicken sausage, eggs, herbs and greens stuffed alongside Three Springs peaches or apples, Market Day Canele pastry, Birchrun Hills cheese, and the to-die-for coffee from Philly Fair Trade Roasters.

Truly, though, I keep coming back for the tomatoes and bread. Some of the best food items I’ve ever eaten in Philadelphia have been concocted with Blooming Glen Farm tomatoes or Ric’s Bread. Or both. From their plump heirlooms to juicy sungold cherry tomatoes, Blooming Glen is hitting the spot with their tomatoes time after time. And Ric’s? What can I say? Your bread is so delicious, I would like to marry it if not for the legal issues. The aforementioned friend who introduced me to heirloom tomato sandwiches failed to tell me how intoxicating said sandwich would be when enjoyed with your 14 grain variety. My summertime tomato sandwich has, by this point, seen many iterations. With or without bacon. Sometimes the addition of a fried egg–with a runny yolk, of course. Maybe mayo. Maybe not. Dill? Sure! Basil? Absolutely. As long as those tomatoes are perched on top of that bread, glistening with the promise of being sweet, supple, delicious and simple, I’m a happy girl. With many simple pleasures to be thankful for, Headhouse is tops on my list.

(LeeAnne with Ben from Three Springs)

Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Queen Village / Bella Vista Leave a comment

Love Note #60: Philadelphia could learn a thing or two from the ice cream at Franklin Fountain in Old City (Sean Blanda)

Sean Blanda

Favorite Spot: Franklin Fountain
Neighborhood: Old City
Address: 116 Market St.


I am: Co-founder of Technically Philly, now looking for the next big thing. (**Found**)
Years in Philly: 8 with a few breaks in Jersey.
Current Home: East Passyunk

My love note:


I’ve never seen an advertisement for The Franklin Fountain. As best I can tell, there’s never been a GroupOn or frenzied radio promotion for the humble ice cream shop that is on the precipice of Market Street’s slide into the city’s waterfront clusterfuck.

There are two things I like about Philadelphia: it’s real and its delicious. Franklin Fountain? Real. Delicious.

Owned by the Berley Brothers, the siblings keep Franklin Fountain true to a old time-y soda and sweets store. Electricity is scant, everything is hand-made and the handlebar mustaches are without irony. Mostly. While modern dessert places slap some sprinkles or M&M’s on bland custard and call it a day, Franklin Fountain creates sundaes that are masterpieces of gluttony and engineering. I dare you to tackle the “Mt. Vesuvius” by yourself.

While the sundaes carry the day for ten months a year, the Berley Brothers’ masterpiece is the pumpkin flavored ice cream in the Fall. And in the Winter, the long lines shrink allowing ample time to sample the Fountain’s ever-rotating stable of flavors.

As Philadelphians, we struggle balancing our past with our potential. We can birth democracies and become the world’s workshop but I’m still using tokens when I travel on the subway.
Franklin Fountain, on the other hand, just goes for the nostalgia without apology. Its dedication to our past makes it the most interesting and innovative ice cream shop in the country. By embracing the old, it creates something new.

Philadelphia could learn a thing or two from ice cream.

Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Old City 1 Comment

Love Note #58: Sophia Hwang cheated a little bit and chose all of Queen Village. I don’t blame her though.

Sophia Hwang
Favorite Spot: Queen Village Neighborhood
Neighborhood: I’m cheating by having my favorite spot be a neighborhood
Address: Between South Street and Washington Ave, Front and 6th Street.

I am: New York born and raised, but came to Philly by accident after going to school in the Bay Area. I am a former teacher but everyday youth advocate. I conduct research that influences policy and practice. I am a board member of Young Involved Philadelphia. I am also a home cook and food hippie (open to interpretation).
Years in Philly: 4 years + 1 month.
Current Home: In transition

My love note:
An ode to Queen Village,

You are the oldest neighborhood in Philadelphia and therefore the keeper of the most treasurers. You are home to iconic “2 street,” speckled by stunning coffee shops (Bodhi, Fulya, Java) and protected by cobblestone cross streets that reveal the magic of Penn’s Landing- the same 2 street that brings Mummers and commoners together.

Though you are an obscure neighborhood to some and often mispronounced (QueenS Village), you are truly accessible. The mighty 57 bus holds steady and true, helping SEPTA keep its head up high when they say, “We’re Getting There.”

Queen Village, you are home to majestic puppies and humble owners, such as Connor, the purple doggie of Fitzwater street (may he rest in peace). Pugs named “Friendly” and “Shy” (as noted on their matching neckerchiefs) are lucky to call you home, as they romp and mosey leash-free, through Mario Lanza Park.

Queen Village, you are beautiful. Decorated by the unique fabrics along 4th street and the culinary treasures on Bainbridge (Phila Bar and Restaurant Supply, 4th Street Cookies, and Ela), the only accessories you need are those sold for $1 at Philly AIDS Thrift.

Queen Village, you have unlocked some of Philadelphia’s secrets and helped me to accept that this city is fantastic because it is unique and nonsensical. For two years, I was lucky to stumble through Center City streets and return to a place called home. You are #whyilovephilly. The toes of NY and SF are curling with jealousy.

Adoringly,
Sophie


Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Queen Village / Bella Vista 5 Comments

Love Note #52: Nick Goldberg proudly wears his “Nick’s #1” t-shirt (as in Nick’s Roast Beef)

Nick Goldberg (ex-pat files)
Favorite spot: Nick’s Roast Beef
Neighborhood: Northeast
Address: 2212 Cottman Ave.

I am: getting a Ph.D. in and teaching philosophy
Years in Philly: 18
Current Home: Baltimore, Maryland

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Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Northeast Leave a comment

Love Note #36: Philly Phoodie’s favorite sandwich spot — Paesano’s in Northern Liberties

Thadeus S.

Favorite Spot: Paesano’s (Girard location).
Neighborhood: Northern Liberties.
Address: 152 West Girard Avenue Philadelphia

I am: A grad student, the Philly Phoodie, and lover of all things Philadelphia. Yes, even the bad stuff. 
Years in Philly: Raised in the suburbs, spent 6 years out West, been back in the city for 7 years. 
Current Home: Old Kensington.



My love note: As a connoisseur of meat and cheese on bread, I have eaten many, many sandwiches in my day. I have often stated with no trepidation that Philadelphia is the sandwich capital of the United States. That being said, I think we can all agree that the United States is the sandwich capital of the world, and therefore, one would conclude that Philadelphia has the best sandwiches in the world.

Now, here’s another statement of truth: Paesano’s has the best sandwiches in Philadelphia. You do the math.

A steady stable of carefully scripted ingredients coupled with the love your Italian grandmother would put into preparing Sunday dinner makes this place my favorite around. The employees are always ready to entertain, and extremely helpful if you need a recommendation, although you honestly can’t go wrong. Sandwiches run the gamut, from the Tuna Italiano, boasting Italian-style tuna salad, green olives, herb cheddar spread, hard cooked egg, roasted tomatoes, pepperoncini, arugula, and crushed up potato chips sprinkled throughout; to the namesake Paesano, with supple brisket, horseradish mayo, roasted tomatoes, pepperoncini, sharp prov, and a fried egg.


Oh, and don’t forget, while they don’t have a cheesesteak, they also make what is undoubtedly one of the best Italian hoagies in the city – the Daddy Wad.

Philadelphia may have my heart, but Paesano’s has my stomach. Thanks for the love handles, friends. 



Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Northern Liberties 3 Comments

Love Note #34: Craving something delicious? Kishwer Vikaas suggests the Dutch Eating Place at the Reading Terminal Market

Kishwer Vikaas

Favorite Spot: Dutch Eating Place
Neighborhood: Market East
Address: 1200 Arch St, Philadelphia, PA 19107


I am: a slow-talking, dream-walking, Jersey-born, Philadelphia-bred, Pakistani-American who copywrites for a public health nonprofit, interns at a legal clinic and attends law school at night.
Years in Philly: 18 
Current Home: Bella Vista


My love note: 
Comfort food to me means rich, stick-to-your arteries Pennsylvania Dutch cooking. Until the age of 16, I grew up surrounded by a vibrant community of Mennonites (the Amish community’s more liberal brethren) who brought pans of delectable cream-and-butter-laden casseroles to every church event. So whenever I’m in need of a pick-me-up meal, I make my way straight to the Dutch Eating Place, where more often than not, I can find one of my Mennonite friends waitressing. At this point, I am generally struck with nostalgia and order the apple dumpling served with fresh cream, a typical Pennsylvania Dutch dessert that I recall my friends’ grandmothers preparing many a time. For those unfamiliar with the dumpling, it is basically a blob of dough stuffed with apples, cinnamon and sugar — and baked. Delicious. And if it’s too early for apple dumplings, there’s always blueberry pancakes. Or apple cinnamon french toast. Or scrapple.
 

Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Center City 1 Comment

Love Note #33: Go see Neal Santos’ Farm 51 in SW Philly. It’s amazing.

Neal Santos
Favorite Spot: Farm 51
Neighborhood: SW Philly
Address: 51st and Chester


I am: Many things, but mostly a photographer for City Paper and one half the muscle and brain behind Farm 51, a small-scale farm and garden in Southwest Philadelphia.
Years in Philly: 8 years
Current Home: Farm 51 in SW Philly.

(Photos by Neal)

My love note: Philadelphians, to the best of my knowledge, are complex and simple at the same time. Philadelphia’s locations: its landmarks, historic sites, restaurants and bars, are merely just spaces. If just for one second, you sit, listen and observe the people of Philly in any of its neighborhoods, you can get served the perfect slice of life, Philly-style.


Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Southwest Philly 3 Comments