If you've read my blog consistently - which admittedly is probably pretty difficult lately given my ass-clown posting frequency - you probably realize I have no real love lost for Philadelphia. Most of my memories about the city are pretty shitty. Philly drivers are entirely assholes towards cyclists, and while the riding is absolutely sick - I had more than a few close encounters with cars, the 'subway' system smells like cat pee and weird handsoap, and the city all-in-all shuts down at 10 pm unless you plan on getting hammered as if you were stuck in colonial times. Freakin' Quakers. That said, to be entirely fair - it's also home to a dope-ass Korean-Japanese food truck that pimps a bulgogi cheesesteak (with the nicest old couple running shit ever) and a couple of the best burgers I've eaten in my short cholesterol-laden life (which is actually serious praise considering how many burgers I put away thus far)... but most of it is shitty. That said, one area that Philly absolutely killed at was sandwiches. Maybe it's all the old-fashioned Italian delis... or maybe it's all fo the old-fashioned Italian bakeries churning out some seriously sensual bread fumes... but mash those two components together and you have something absolutely magical. One of the few things I legitimately miss about Philadelphia: Italian roast pork sandwiches.
Look at that rod of hot Italian pork. Not unlike Gary Oak - this is a sandwich where you "can't ignore its girth." Don't be deceived by the generic deli look here - the amount of meat packed inside the core of the baguette is unbelievable - it's almost as if someone hollowed out the bread beforehand to violate the center pocket with an additional quantity of pork. I don't remember how much it was (it has been over a year since I've eaten one of thes fuckers), but I would most certainly pay a bounty of gold to taste that sweet porcine folded meat right now. Goddamn.
There's something distinctly indescribable about the flavor combination in these sandwiches. Roast pork au jus, a very distinctively sharp provolone, garlicy olive-oil laden broccoli rabe, and a seeded hoagie - there's absolutely no complexity in the construction, but the depth of flavor it brings is like getting punched in the face while wearing braces. Except in a good way. Less painful, more delicious. Taylor's Gourmet manages to deliver on nostalgia like a boss. Their roast pork is as moist as my pants just thinking about it, the bread softer and fluffier than Jigglypuff. Shit... that's soft. Despite the their location in Washington DC, they've forgotten absolutely nothing about the OG roots that make this sandwich the crown tit's of Philadelphia (honestly, it deserves to be held in higher regard than the cheesesteak). Good on ya' bros.
tl;dr - writing this post reminded me of how much I think Philadelphia sucks. Except for the food, they got that shit locked down. In spite of how much their subway system smells like a delightfully pungent combination of homeless pee and cheap handsoap, I think they're really good at making roast pork sandwiches. Taylor Gourmet makes them pretty good.
485 K St NW Washington, DC 20001