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<< back to foods in Philadelphia

Roast pork sandwich

A roast pork sandwich with broccoli rabe from DiNic's in Philadelphia.

What: Locals will tell you that this is the real Philadelphia sandwich: thin-sliced, juicy slow-roasted pork piled onto a hoagie roll with (preferably) sharp provolone cheese and garlicky greens (broccoli rabe or spinach). It’s a deceptively simple but genius combination of Italian ingredients that may just have you saying, “Cheese what?”

Where: In Reading Terminal Market (45 N. 12th St., map), DiNic’s is famed for its roast pork sandwich, as its long lines attest, and rightfully so: The meat’s tender, the bread holds up well to the juices, the rabe is generously portioned. And you can add a bright and beautiful shock of roasted red peppers to the mix.

When: Sun-Mon, 9am-4pm; Tues-Sat, 9am-6pm. Try to arrive at least a few hours before they close, especially on weekends, as they sometimes run out of ingredients.

Order: The roast pork sandwich ($8.25) with sharp provolone, roasted peppers, and broccoli rabe ($1 per topping). The broccoli rabe has a nice, tart bite; it’s a bit more flavorful than spinach, which is also available here. If you like spice, make good use of the hot peppers on the counter.

Alternatively: If you have access to a car, you can try two other contenders for best roast pork, both in South Philly: Tony Luke’s (multiple locations including 39 East Oregon Ave., map) peppery “Italian roast pork” and John’s Roast Pork (14 East Snyder Ave., map), where spinach is your only greens options (order your sandwich large, as the small comes on an inferior kaiser roll).


 

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