Hey loves! Happy Wednesday! I’m recapping our quick weekend in Philly. Nate and I flew there last Friday to celebrate a friend’s wedding. We had the best 48 hours!
I should start off by saying this: we both had a good LOL when we were standing in line at the car rental counter at the Philadelphia Airport and we glanced up to the lobby tv to watch the news…and the news anchor was going on and on about the massive heat wave that was hitting Philadelphia.
“We’ve been warning you about this for weeks, and it has arrived.”
“Don’t go outside.”
So I see all of this, and then double check my weather app for the high? Yep, 98 degrees! Nate and I were laughing sooo hard because it was 2 degrees cooler than the Austin Texas temps we had left behind.
(We were also laughing because how we felt about Philly is probably how the rest of the country views Texas when we have a “snow day” because there’s a 10% chance of anything white falling from the sky…)
Anyway, it was a hot weekend in Philadelphia, and normally I don’t spend long afternoons outside when it’s a scorcher. But when I’m visiting a new city, I don’t want to miss out on anything! So we spent the entire weekend bopping around the city.
We got to the airport on Friday around lunch time! We got there early enough to grab a quick lunch before our flight (which is why Nate’s mouth is full in this picture…).
We both grabbed sandwiches at Flyrite Chicken at the Austin airport before hopping on our flight to Philadelphia. I love that ABIA has so many great food options now!
I must say: I’ve shifted from the mindset of “I’m going to get to the airport at the last possible moment so I don’t waste any time,” to my current mindset of “I’m going to leave some extra time so I’m not stressed at all, and I’ll enjoy a glass of wine or a quick dinner at the airport.” Ah, age.
The Philadelphia airport is south of the city, so we stopped at Brewery ARS on our way into the city. One of the owners of this little South Philly brewery is a designer, so he does all the artwork on the cans. ARS is a teeny brewery, so they set up tables in the actual brewery (right by the fermentors) so guests can sit there in addition to the tap room. We chose to sit in the brewery space!
*Quick note about all the breweries we visited on this trip: Nate and I both LOVE craft beer and think it’s a fun way to experience the culture of a new city! I’m pregnant right now, so I wasn’t able to indulge in beer in the way I normally would on vacation. I smelled all the samples, and had small sips of the low ABV beers that were most appealing.
We stayed at the Kimpton Palomar, and it was fantastic! I love the Kimpton hotels (we stayed in one in 2016 San Francisco during the weekend we got engaged, so they’ll always have a special place in my heart.)
Our room was on the 23rd floor and had a sweet view of the city! Hellooooo Philadelphia! We’re so excited to get to know you!
Off to dinner! We went to meet up with Lauren, one of my college friends who was also in town for the wedding. Lauren is getting married this fall, and I (sadly) can’t make it to her wedding because I’ll be too close to my due date, so it was fun to get to chat with her about all of her upcoming wedding plans.
Our Friday night dinner was at Pizzeria Vetri. I got Nate Marc Vetri’s pizza book for Christmas, and he’s been making recipes from it for the past 7 months, so Nate was really excited to check out his restaurant. (And I’m never one to turn down Neapolitan pizza!)
The restaurant was good! I’m not going to list it as one of my favorite restaurants in the country, but the brick-oven pizza had a nice char and creative toppings, and the ambiance was very casual. It was a fun and easy place to hang out with friends!
After dinner, we walked over to Monk’s Café with Lauren and her fiancé. Monk’s is a remarkable Belgium beer bar in downtown Philly and I wished so badly I could have more than a sip or two of beer because…..do you see all those Russian River beers on tap?!
We had a fun, late evening with friends before calling it a night and walking back to the hotel.
Good morning! We slept in a bit on Saturday morning and then ventured out for breakfast and coffee. Note: it was already 90 degrees at 9 am, so my hair is back, sunscreen is on, and all of my makeup is about to melt off my face..
First stop: Federal Donuts for some hot, fresh, fried-to-order donuts. SO YUMMY! I got strawberry lavender and Nate tried the cinnamon and sugar.
I could eat a hot, fresh donut for breakfast every day.
Then we walked 15 minutes or so to a coffee shop that Emily suggested to me: Greenstreet Coffee Roasters. It was good! Nate tried a pour over and a capp, and I got an iced latte (I couldn’t fathom getting anything other than an iced drink…), so we collectively got a pretty good taste of their coffee.
We spent some time wandering around inside Reading Terminal Market, a daily market that’s been in Philadelphia since 1893. It’s a little bit like Pike Place Market, minus the flowers and flying fish. There are a bunch of booths selling meat, produce, artisanal products, and such.
We started with some Beiler’s Donuts! (Yep, more donuts…hehe.)
The line was long and wrapped around the booth, but it moved quickly and we had our donuts in about 5 minutes.
Oh my soul….they are sickly sweet! Haha! If you’re an Austinite, think Gourdough’s Doughnuts (but about 1/2 the size). I tried the Fruity Pebbles yeast donut and the Caramel Apple filled donut.
More wandering, more shopping… Lunch was another booth in Reading Terminal market: DiNic’s for their famous roast pork sandwich. This sandwich has been featured on the Travel Channel in 2012; they called called it the “best sandwich in the U.S. in 2012.”
Reading Terminal Market is fairly close to Old City, so we walked that way next to see a few historical sites, like Ben Franklin’s resting place.
And the Betsy Ross House…
Haha, and we are DRIPPING wet in sweat by this point in the afternoon! I’m pretty sure my poor sausage fingers were so swollen I couldn’t have pulled my wedding ring off my finger if you paid me to do it. #pregnancy.
We walked down Elfreth’s Alley, a historic street in Philly that dates back to 1702.
I was surprised to learn that most of these houses are still privately owned! (One even had a For Sale sign on it…I looked it up on Trulia to see what a historic home in Philly is going for, but I couldn’t find it. 😉 )
Air conditioning break! We went into 2nd Story Brewing, this great little brewery in Old City that’s built on the second story (as the name suggests.)
It’s a really cool space! The upstairs bar was closed, but we were allowed to wander around up there to check out the brewery from a distance.
After the brewery, I wanted something that I could fully indulge in: ice cream! The Franklin Fountain was just around the corner from 2nd Story Brewing, so we ended up there.
Here are my thoughts on The Franklin Fountain: it’s inside an old soda fountain, and while the ice cream was good (see those GIANT chunks of chocolate in my chocolate chip ice cream? Delicious!) but you have to pay for the “charm” factor. A small scoop of ice cream was $5.80 (medium $8, and large $10) and it just wasn’t quite worth that steep price point!
Unless, of course, you just love the charming nature of soda fountains that much….
The second half of Saturday was spent driving up to Phoenixville to celebrate Jubilee’s wedding day!! Such a fun, festive ceremony!!
Psst: if you’re reading this and looking for more dinner restaurant suggestions, Zahav is hands down the restaurant we would have tried! (Just be sure to book reservations in advance – it gets pretty crowded.)
Good morning, Sunday! Ok, by the time we got back to downtown Philly from the wedding on Saturday night, it was late. I slept in on Sunday morning…and we hardly made it to the Independence Hall tour reservation that I had made for 10:20 am!
So…forgive the grungy mess you’re about to see in the following photo. 😉
The Independence Hall tour was really cool! The tours are free, but you can reserve a spot online for a $1 processing fee (just be sure to go to the Visitors Center before the tour to pick up the paper copy of your tickets – they won’t accept digital tickets).
Tours are 30 minutes long and are fun for both kids and adults. They walked us through the actual room where the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution were both signed. So cool!
Thankfully, there was a La Colombe across the street from Independence Hall where we dashed for some caffeine + breakfast.
I know that cheesesteaks are pretty touristy, but I wanted to eat at least ONE before catching our afternoon flight! We stopped by Jimmy G’s for some cheesesteaks, and friends: they were delicious.
And then one more beer stop at Yards Brewing Company for a quick flight before heading to the airport to catch out flight back home to Austin.
Philly was so fun! This was really quick trip, so I have a lot of museums and restaurants I’d love to check off my list if I’m able to visit again. But this was a fun intro to Philly for me!