Discovery! Merl’s South Philly Breakfast Spot

Welcome to Newbold. Bounded by Washington, Broad, West Passyunk and 18th Street, this formerly nameless hood was knighted Newbold by the SPTR peeps, so in theory, it owes its very existence to ale. Whether your beer of choice is an Ommegang Three Philosophers quad or 40 of Old E, you can drink well here (and get some awesome Indonesian), but as recent as a few months ago you had to cross Broad for bunch somewhere other than the Tap Room.

Now there’s a sweet new diner serving up soulful breakfast and lunch. Find Merle’s South Philly Breakfast Spot on the corner of 16th and Dickinson, a few blocks north of the new Station Bar & Grill. Locals saddle up to the counter for mugs striped mugs of hot coffee, while families and hungry hipsters grab a table in the sunny, baby blue dining room decorated with homey knickknacks and potted plants. Natural light pours in through the picture windows taped with paper signs proclaiming, “Now featuring Belgian waffles”. What more do you need to know?

How about chicken with those waffles? Three peerlessly crisp, juicy Southern fried wings arrived alongside a fluffy Belgian bad boy with toasty edges and a soft center. After Friday night Ketel-and-clubbing, this syrup-drizzled, butter-drenched duo got our mind right. Other options: scrambled eggs with salmon cakes, crazy-good pancakes with crunchy, skillet-browned perimeters, turkey sausage. The grits were divine, served with or without cheese, topped with a generous pat of butter that looked like a lemon Starburst slowly melting in the sun.

Coupled with the homespun food and friendly service, Styrofoam plates, plastic utensils and paper napkins imparted a cozy charm. It’s like being at your grandmom’s house, if your grandmom was black and could cook her ass off. Please, adopt us.
Photo: blogalicious

1 comment:

Sharptooth said...

Chicken and waffles! Proof that South Philly becomes more like Echo Park every day.