A Visit Back to Paesano's Philadelphia

It has been a good two+ years since my last visit to Paesano's in the Italian Market section of Philadelphia. While the company has another location in Northern Liberties, I just never seem to find myself in these areas, but I do remember craving the Gustaio, a roasted lamb sausage with sun dried cherry mostarda and gorgonzola with roasted fennel, for days after my last encounter with this little piece of heaven.

With my youngest sister and her boyfriend visiting, we decided to partake in a Free Walking Tour of Philadelphia. I highly recommend this tour! It was an amazing opportunity to learn about the area and to just get out of the house, get moving and meet new people! Anyhow, enough promoting the walking tour, onto the real reason we are all reading this blog...the food.

We ended up stopping in the Italian Market area for lunch. With just shy of 45-minutes, needing something gluten free and at a minimum vegetarian, if not vegan, options are limited in this area. I quickly dragged the group to Paesano's and opted for the Giardina sandwich, a roasted eggplant, fennel, peppers and fresh mozzarella with basil pesto. There was an up-charge of $2.00 for the gluten free bread. Once ordered we quickly waited for a couple of seats to open and then dove in like vultures - but hey, a girls gotta go what a girls gotta do to get a seat in this place!

With just a short wait, my gluten free sub came out clearly labeled. While I am sure there are some cross-contamination issues here, I did see the chef stop what he was doing, wash his hands, change gloves, and move to what appeared to be a designated gluten free area to make my sandwich.

Time to dig in! The sandwich was okay, but not as 'awesome' as I remember it. The bread, supplied by Taffets, was not as soft as I recalled and there was definitely not enough pesto for my liking. More hopes for next time! :)

My sister went with the Daddy Wad - which was HUGE! It was a roll stuffed with Sweet and Hot peppers, provolone, tomato, hot copa and arugula. My sister requested no onions and no pickles). This sandwich looked and smelled amazing!

Peter went with the Paesano - which may have smelled like my favorite of the group. It's the company's signature dish (obviously). It is a classic Italian roll with beef brisket, horseradish mayo, roasted tomatoes, pepperoncino, provolone, and....get this...a fried egg!


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