1000 Herr Street
Harrisburg, PA 17103
So, as I was saying, I was in Harrisburg for the day and hit a few local spots for lunch and dinner and in between.
The final stop in my culinary adventure was a little corner spot in the heart of the city, just a few blocks from the capital complex.
It is truly on the wrong side of the tracks, but I did not let that deter me. I mean, just look at those awnings and sweet neon signage! What an awesomely retro building. There was no way I wasn't going inside this time machine.
It's a really small mom-and-pop style Italian joint, with a bar that seats around 6 and a dining room with about 12 tables. There's a tiny window between the kitchen and dining room where you see little hands reaching up and placing plates full of hot, steamy foods. The special drink was the "oral fixation" and I had to skip it, but I couldn't help appreciating the artistic flair (see below).
Instead, I partook in their famous "fishbowl" of beer.
It's an enormous 32 oz. goblet of ice cold domestic for only $4.25 - yes, I said $4.25 - that's not a typo. Amazing.
With that deal, the Subway Cafe could only get better from there.
And it did. The side salad was pretty much your usual mix of iceberg and Romaine, but I want to note that the tomatoes were exceptionally ripe, considering these kinds of salads usually show up with pink-to-white tomatoes that are completely inedible. I could feel the love coming out of the kitchen.
The pepperoni pizza with extra cheese came out moments after and I had to put down my fork. Mouthwatering.
All of the pies are personal size, about 11 inches each, and it looks like they're cooked in something like a 10 inch pie pan. The edges sort of sit up, but it's not even close to a deep dish pie. In fact, it's the opposite.
The crust is cracker-style, thin and crispy. The cheese goes right on the dough, so it melds together in a chewy crunch, and is topped with a swirl of sweet and tangy sauce. I had to add the thin pepperoni slices, at everyone's recommendation. I mean, this stuff is heavenly.
Did I mention they run $6.50 a piece with toppings coming in at $1.40? I mean, it eats like a meal, but I eat for 2. Obviously, I was due for another menu item. The daily special board advertised lasagne with meat sauce or meatballs and I chose the former.
My god, this was some of the best lasagne I've ever had. The noodles were fresh and cooked just al dente. They were stacked together so the heavily-meated sauce actually sandwiched the noodles. There was very little ricotta, if any, and I realized how much I like an abundance of sweet, tangy sauce taking over.
It also came with a couple of slices of fresh baked Italian bread. When buttered, it made the perfect mop for any leftover meat sauce. Now, I have to let you know that the lasagne isn't officially on the menu, so I'll pray that when you go, it's up on the board so you can enjoy your own little pile of heaven.
Well, second pile of heaven, because any of the pizza pies will be your first. Buon appetito!
EDITOR'S NOTE: Two days after Philly Phoodie's visit, Subway Cafe was named PennLive's Pizza Party winner for 2013. The idea was to "crown a champion pizza that was a cut above those perfectly fine pies found at neighborhood pizzerias." Couldn't be happier about their title. READ MORE ABOUT IT HERE!