PROFILE: Philly Luncher “Jimmy”
As is customary at Philly Lunch, every Tuesday we turn over the site to a different lunch’er for his or her recommendations for the best lunch in Philadelphia. This week it’s Jimmy, a handsome Texas native who likes his tacos in the morning.
Name: Jimmy Pickles
Occupation: Student / Resident Caretaker of 4 grown ass men
Where in Philly do you Work?: 15th and Chestnut
Favorite Kind of Food: Mexican is my favorite kind of food, not only because it’s simple and delicious, and the focus is on fresh ingredients, but also because no matter what you get, it goes well with alcohol. It also reminds me of home (Austin, TX). There may be nothing in the world more perfect than fajitas and ritas in the sun. Oh, and breakfast tacos. I realize that no one reading this knows what I’m talking about, so ask a friend from the South- breakfast tacos change lives.
Beyond that, anything cooked by my mom, anything with too much fat, anything that costs nothing, and anything involving the elements of “pork” and “bun”.
Least Favorite Kind of Food: Ooo. Soup (yes I’m serious, and no, I won’t explain myself). Also, Indian food- I can’t stand overwhelmingly vegetarian fare and I’ve never met a curry chicken that wasn’t at least 80% dried out. Also, pears. Because they taste like sand.
Favorite Place(s) to Eat Lunch in Philly: This is Philly, so I feel the need to say that you can find the best cheesesteaks in this beautiful city at Dalessandro’s in Roxborough. Go try one and end the debate for yourself.
Jake’s Sandwich Board (12th and Sansom) is one of my favorites, basically anything you order is amazing. And the staff is knowledgeable and competent and there’s usually an owner around, which are big plusses for me. You can never go wrong at Reading Terminal, and if you go between Tuesday and Saturday, there’s a Dutch Amish diner place (I think it’s called Hatville Farms) that has a completley ridiculous turkey and gravy sandwich. And it kills me to say this, but I really do like the pizza at Zavino (13th and Sansom) even though it’s overpriced and the staff all graduated early because they were too cool for school.
“Go-To” Lunch Place You and Your Coworkers Eat at Too Often? On campus at Temple I really like Plaza Pizza (Broad and Oxford) because they have a serious buffalo chicken wrap. And the Jamaican Jerk Chicken truck on Broad and Montgomery because they always hook you up with a ton of food, their mac-n-cheese is habit forming, and the chicken patty is too cheap and easy ($1.50) to pass up. In center city, it’s Chris’ Jazz Café (Sansom b/t Broad and 15th) because it’s right around the block and almost every day’s lunch special is amazing and cheap (about $6)- try the pastrami wrap or the quartered patty melt.
Place you discovered thanks to Philly Lunch (if any) Empress Garden. I could eat those fried pork chops every single day and die a happy man in 2-3 weeks.
If you could work anywhere (just because of the lunch) where would it be and why? Hands down, no question, anywhere in Costa Rica. Standard Latin American staples (red meat, pork, rice, beans, etc), carne asada, heavy reliance on fruit (I love mangoes. A lot), fresh veggies, plantains, and most importantly, a siesta, which I’m going to argue counts as part of lunch and is correctly included in this list. A daily midday nap!? No-brainer.
Is there anything you’d like to ask the Philly Lunch readers? Can I get a good Mexican food rec?? Please? Like a taqueria? Or a cart? Or a place you have to order in Spanish?
What I wouldn’t give for siestas to be mandatory. Bring it up with Mayor Nutter and I’ll be the first to join you, cowboy.
As for Mexican, my favorite so far is Mexico on the Square on 15th and Pine. Don’t be fooled by the fact that the owner is Asian, the boys in the back are from Mexico.
If you would like to be next week’s Profiled Philly Lunch’er (or know somebody you’d like to nominate), email me at firstname.lastname@example.org