Nov 2006

Naked Chocolate Cafe – Philadelphia

The dessert offerings at Audrey Claire were a bit lacking, so the Marathoner and I went to the Naked Chocolate Cafe to satisfy our sweet tooth. I ordered the Peanut Butter Nudo ($2), while the Marathoner had a petite bittersweet hot chocolate ($3.50). Both treats were delightful!

The nudo, which is unique to Naked Chocolate according to the woman behind the counter, had a soft and chewy texture. Although the nudo is described as brownie-like, I would say that the two desserts are very different. The nudo’s texture is definitely special. The pyramid shape was cute and enhanced the dessert’s presentation.


My only complaint was that the nudo was made with Jif, which is not a real peanut butter (N.A.R.P.B) that contains hydrogenated oils. Sigh. I have a weakness for peanut butter desserts, so I let this tremedous flaw slide on my visit. But in the future, I’ll probably have to stick to the non PB treats due to my fear of trans fats.

The hot chocolate was pure wonderfulness – so thick it was like drinking chocolate sauce. The Marathoner wished the hot chocolate was more bitter, but still found it quite delicious. Since I am not a huge fan of super-dark chocolate (65% or greater), I found the hot chocolate to be just the right amount of bitter. I also really enjoyed dipping my nudo into the cocoa and swiping some of the whipped cream. Even though the Marathoner ordered a petit, he had a hard time finishing it because the chocolate was so rich.

I’ll definitely be returning to Naked Chocolate for their cupcake offerings. The Marathoner will be returning to scope out the extremely attractive staff and clientele.

Naked Chocolate Cafe
1317 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
Phone: 215-735-7310

Naked Chocolate Cafe on Urbanspoon

Nov 2006

Audrey Claire – Philadelphia

After a disastrous Thanksgiving holiday, I had a relaxing dinner with James Golden (who from here on out will be referred to as “the Marathoner”) at Audrey Claire. Although the Marathoner grew up in the ‘burbs of Philly, he has yet to take full advantage of the city’s tasty offerings. Audrey Claire was a great start…


Since I had been to Audrey Claire once before with the Astronomer, I knew we had to start our meal with a flat bread course. The Marathoner initially leaned toward the hummus, mesclun, and smoked salmon combination, but chose the short ribs because I had already had the hummus combo during my last visit. The short rib flatbread was phenomenal. The meat was crisp, yet moist and was shredded atop the flat bread. The meat was deliciously smokey and fatty in flavor. The cheese was mild and foiled the meat nicely. The crust was soft and quite pita-like. Needless to say, we loved it.


Our next course was a crabcake/cornbread dish. The Marathoner loves crab and the Gastronomer loves cornbread, so this was definitely up our alley. Mmm. The crabcake was seasoned in a fashion so that the crab’s natural flavors took center stage. The cornbread’s light flavor complemented the crab beautifully in taste and texture. The aioli and greens provided a tartness that contrasted the crab and cornbread very well.


Our last course was one of the evening’s specials. Neither the Marathoner nor I had ever tasted ostrich so we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try. Although we predicted that the meat would be bird-like (i.e. chicken), ostrich meat ended up surprisingly similar to beef. One difference being ostrich is much leaner than beef. The red wine reduction was a perfect accompaniment to the naturally flavorful meat — like A1, but way better. The hericot verts and potatoes were lovely sides, but not spectacular.

The dessert offerings didn’t pique our interests so we went elsewhere for treats. I enjoyed my second visit to Audrey Claire even more than my first. Well done, Professor Caskey, well done…

Audrey Claire
276 S 20th Street, Philadelphia 19103
Between Rittenhouse Square & Spruce Street
Phone: 215-731-1222

Audrey Claire on Urbanspoon

Nov 2006

The Coventry Deli – Philadelphia

November 16, 2006
Cuisine: American (Traditional), Delis, Sandwiches

2000 Market St
Philadelphia, PA 19103

Phone: 215-972-8310

THE BASKET LUNCH – In a wicker basket you have a choice of a salad or a deli sandwich (with two deli salads and a pickle), a piece of fresh fruit, our own baked goodie, gum, hard candy, chips, condiments, paper goods and a wet-nap ($11.75)

The office always orders lunch when we have meetings. Today we ordered from the deli located on the first floor of our building. I’ve eaten there a couple of times for breakfast because they have excellent oatmeal.

I had a ham and cheese sandwich on some sort of grainy bread with Dijon mustard, a tomato slice, and lettuce. The sandwich was pretty good, but sadly the cheese was American. Not a real cheese (N.A.R.C). To make up for it, the meat was piled on high.

The two deli salads were a macaroni salad and a coleslaw. The macaroni salad was decent enough. Even though it tasted like a prepared salad from the grocery store. The coleslaw tasted like it came from KFC. Pass.

The baked goodie was a giant cookie from an outside manufacturer. The cookie was extremely large because it contained two servings and 520 calories. I ate 2/3 and saved the rest for later.

I gave my co-worker my chips (Herr’s original) and candy. I saved the piece of fruit, a green apple, for later.

The Coventry Deli makes a great oatmeal, but only a so-so basket lunch.

Coventry Deli on Urbanspoon