April 3, 2015

Friday Food Photos: 3 Spots to Grab Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner this Weekend in Philadelphia

Happy Friday! It's 60 degrees out, Easter weekend and we're starting to spot some flowers... could spring finally be here?? It felt like this day would never come... 

Time to shake off winter hibernation mode and get back out on the food scene. Here are three Friday food photos to inspire your next breakfast, lunch and dinner around town. 

Breakfast: Breakfast Burrito from Cafe Ynez. Despite all the great food options around Graduate Hospital, we'd been missing a good Mexican restaurant until Cafe Ynez opened last year. Brunch was the immediate draw and I can vouch that the giant, stuffed breakfast burrito is worth the trip. All the ingredients tasted very fresh and none overpowered their companions. (Overkill on rice or beans can be so frustrating.) It comes vegetarian with scrambled eggs, refried beans, pico de gallo, good guacamole, sour cream and rice in a flour tortilla but you can add any meat you'd like - I highly recommend the carnitas. Their homemade Mexican hot chocolate also hit the spot and friends were very pleased with the huevos rancheros. 

Cafe Ynez is still one of the earliest food ventures in the west-of-Broad section of Washington Ave., along with Kermit's Bake Shop. (Stop there after brunch to pick up a sweet treat for later.) But as the neighborhoods in Southwest Center City continue to evolve, I think we'll see more great places popping up along this strip. Cafe Ynez, 20th & Washington Ave.

Lunch: Veggie Panini from Palm Tree Gourmet. I happened by the Palm Tree deli and mini grocery market at 20th & Pine on a recent weekday during lunchtime and couldn't believe how many people were in there ordering sandwiches. Guess there is more of a lunch crowd in the neighborhood than I realized. 

Either way, this was a quick, healthy and tasty little lunch option to grab n' go. It's made with romaine lettuce, tomato, onion, alfalfa sprouts, cucumber, green pepper avocado and your choice of cheese. At $6, it was a little cheaper than most food trucks or other sandwich shops, too. Rumor has it the buffalo chicken panini is pretty awesome, so that's next on the list. I'd love to see Palm Tree add a few tables on the sidewalk so we can enjoy a quick lunch al fresco there this summer. Palm Tree Gourmet, multiple locations. 

Dinner: Meatballs from Me n' Mo. An entire restaurant dedicated to meatballs! No seriously, the top of the paper menu literally says, "House Balls." It's simple: wander in off South Street to what feels like someone's Italian home kitchen, order a glass of wine for $6, choose your balls (pork, beef, lamb, chicken, veggie, specials), pick from among 5 or 6 different sauces (marinara, pesto, mushroom cream, vodka, etc.), grab a few $5 sides like homemade gnocchi and the wedge salad, and bada bing you've got yourself a nice little dinner. 

Were they the best meatballs we've ever had? No. Did we enjoy a perfectly fine dinner with the parents for, like, $60? Yes. And they haven't stopped talking about it since! We tried a bunch of different meatballs and sauces, all were good but our favorite was that night's special, a fontina-stuffed chicken meatball in white wine sauce.  Me n' Mo Meatballs, 2nd & South Streets.

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