DOUBLE FEATURE: Unruly forms of ground meat

Dishes 178-180: Brisket Hash and Smoked wagyu Panini at Café Estelle, 444 N. 4th St

Pork Dumplings at Meritage, 20th and Lombard

So THIS is Scrapple!

Having heard many scary stories about Scrapple’s gruesome ingredients and harboring an inexplicable compulsion to “do” all things Philly, I have for a long time felt Scrapple calling me, but been too tentative to try it. I had just worked up the nerve to order it at Estelle the other day when Tim beat me to it.

And you know what, not half scary! It was spicy and meaty, deep fried, all excellent qualities, a nice crispy exterior and a gooey meaty interior. What’s not to like? It wasn’t grisly in the least. I’m a fan.

A notable matter of business—I have called Estelle on multiple occasions, weekday and weekend, and now this was my second visit—and the dishes on the list have not been available any of those occasions. So we decided to sample some other goodies and call it a day.

I opted for the autumn scramble, a messy conglomerate of swiss chard, eggs, potatoes, and cheddar cheese—the sophisticated interpretation of my usual, two eggs, scrambled. Tim chose the apple cinnamon pancakes, aromatic manhole-sized fluffy confections doused in syrup. Oh. Glorious.

But the highlight of this event was the Scrapple, a dish that asks as many questions as it answers. Meat? Yes. Beef? Maybe? Pork? Possibly? Delicious? Clearly! 


And on the subject of PORK DUMPLINGS…

There are no pictures of this one cause I ate it. Sorry. I feel like one of those guilty-faced lolz cats.

courtesy of

Good news: this is an excellent reason to go back and glom them down a second time. Tender, crispy, chewy little bits of fried heaven, in manageable three-dumpling portions. Dumplings for all the masses!


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