Sister Cities Park
18th St. & The Parkway
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Open since mid-May, Sister Cities Park is the resulting transformation of that (what used to be useless) section of green that sits in front of the immaculate cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul.
Once the home to many a man without a home, this triangular section of Logan Square was recently given a face-lift. Enter a new visitor's center / Milk & Honey Cafe.
The architecture of this small building is fantastic. It's bright, rustic and modern all at the same time.
With 3 of four sides made out of floor-to-ceiling glass panels, the views are pretty amazing.
Atmosphere = 5 cheesesteaks. But let's get down to what we're really here for, the eats.
All of the sandwiches are pre-made and housed in a typical open shelved refrigerator, with salads and drinks nearby. You have the option of either eating your selection cold, or they offer to heat any one of them up on their panini press. The employee recommended heating up any/all of them and I agreed, feeling how solid and cold the bundles were upon handling.
In an attempt to purge myself of the weekend's indulgences, I've adopted Meatless Mondays - well, on an every-other-Monday basis. (Let's face it, forcing myself to a weekly eating regimen of vegetarian only items will go nowhere, fast.) So, I went with what was labeled as The Franklin: house made red pepper pesto, mild Gouda cheese, tomatoes & fresh arugula.
The whole grain bread was fresh and full of fiber, and the combination of pesto and tomatoes kept it from being too dry. I'm sure the whole pre-made, sitting around all day thing helped too.
The Gouda was, shall I say, gouda. All in all, not a bad veggie panini, if you're trying to take in healthy ingredients.
The old dining mate forgot about Meatless Mondays and ordered The Italian Market Hoagie with Prosciutto di Parma, Genoa salami, Green Meadow Farm ham, provolone, & fresh arugula. Notice how they don't mention any condiments?
Well, they over pressed it AND it was dry. Luckily they had Hellmann's mayonnaise packets to add the much-needed lubrication.
The cured meats were okay, but a bit lacking for an $8.50 sandwich. The bread would have been decent, had it not been burnt to a crisp. Couldn't really taste the provolone, a nice sharp variety would help kick it up a notch.
Good thing we grabbed a bag of salt & vinegar Joe Chips to hold us over.
All in all, Milk & Honey is a great destination – but I recommend it only if what you seek is coffee, some internets and maybe a bagel or other AM pastry.