With its low self-esteem and high urban blight, Hartford is the ultimate underdog city. Sad City Hartford documents the joys, sorrows and eccentricities of New England's Rising Star.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Sad City Travels: Philly; Helen Ubinas Edition

Yes please!
A few weeks ago we visited Philadelphia. Just a few days later Sad City friend and former Hartford Courant  columnist Helen Ubinas announced that she had relocated and was working in Philadelphia. Over the weekend Helen announced that she was making her first visit to our favorite part of Philly, the Reading Street Terminal Market. In our experience this is hands down, the best food market we have ever visited.

We saw some other stuff in Philly. We saw that Love sign, and the world's largest television at the Comcast headquarters. We checked out a Flyers-Maple Leafs game in which we were once again reminded that ice hockey is the world's greatest live sport and where we were momentarily transported back to 1999 as ex-Whaler Chris Pronger took a stick to the face and legendary Czech winger and mullet wearer Jaromir Jagr scored two goals. No we didn't run up the stairs to the Rocky statute and we weren't in town long enough to check out any museums. Yet nothing we saw, and we doubt nothing we missed could have topped the awesomeness of the Reading Street Terminal Market.

When we were told we were going to a food market we weren't sure what to expect. Having lived next to Quincy Market for years, we are aware that some of these markets are little more than glorified food courts. The Reading Street Terminal Market is better described as a glorious food court. There are so many options, it would take weeks, if not months to sample everything. We ended up with an awesome roast pork sandwich with some incredible sharp provolone. We followed that up with some fresh squeezed lemonade and a piece of baklava. It was one of those times when we wished we could just keep eating and eating. In addition to the plethora of places to grab lunch, there were areas to buy produce, meats, fish, groceries, and other household good. A resident could get almost anything they needed at the market and have dozens and dozens of great lunch options to choose from.

A market like this is an awesome addition to any city. The amount and variety of great food available at the Reading Street Terminal Market is simply mind blowing. Our favorite part of Philly. Good luck to our friend Helen Ubinas in her new city and we certainly hope she enjoys the market. Returning to it will be on top of our list next time we are in town.


  1. I was just there a few weeks ago myself and I most likely had the same roast pork sandwich (the place was called DiNick's). It was excellent I highly recommend that anyone going to philly anytime soon checks this place out.

    I also went to a place that according to some food show I saw has "the best cheese steak in philly" and it really sucked, especially in comparison to the roast pork sandwich at DiNick's in the Reading Terminal Market.

  2. That was the pork place. It was awesome. Yes, the pork place was highly recommended over the cheesesteak in the market. It's a no brainer to visit. There should be a market like this in every city. Just flat awesome.

  3. Wow those seafood prices are much higher than Hartford

  4. btw, it's not the reading street market. it's the reading terminal market. it's under reading terminal, of the reading railroad.

  5. Those cheeses look friggin incredible particularly the Roquefort. Where in Hartford can I get similar quantity/selection?

  6. Best cheese is at D&D Market on Franklin Ave. Best place to cut the cheese is Blue Back Sq.

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