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It’s Just (Quick and Cheap) Lunch

February 1, 2010

Like many of you, I work in Center City.  And as most young lawyers in the city will likely concur, the majority of my lunch meals are either back at my office or are picked up and eaten quickly.  The occasions for going out and sitting down at a food establishment are limited.  Unfortunately, we just don’t have a lot of time for it.

Nevertheless, in my years of working in Center City, I’ve found some good gems.  Places you can get a tasty meal quickly that you can either bring back to your office or chow down while on the go.  And, because the  price point for what people in Philly are willing to pay for lunch is somewhat limited, you can get lunch at these places for about $8 or less.

Everyone already knows about chains (Subway, Potbelly, Five Guys, etc.) and the respective food courts at Liberty Place, Comcast Center and the Bellevue, so here’s some other favorites:

  • DiBruno Bros .(18th and Chestnut as well as at Comcast Center) – It’s much more than a cheese and meat shop.  There are some very good sandwiches, paninis, flatbread pizza and other goodies to be had.  Yeah, it’s a little on the pricier side (closer to $8) but it’s generally worth it.
  • Shank’s Original Uptown (15th and Sansom) – This place originated in the heart of South Philly in an establishment called Shank’s and Evelyn’s.  After nearly 50 years in its original location, Shank’s moved to Center City just last year.  It has phenomenal cheesesteaks, chicken cutlets and other great sandwiches.  Plus, the folks are all relatively friendly and unintimidating.
  • Joe’s Pizza (16th and Sansom) – Still serves some good pizza with a significant selection.  Of course, the menu is pointless; you just have to pretty much see what they have that day and point to it.  But the “specialty” pizzas like chicken barbecue, white ricotta and 4 cheese are quite tasty.
  • Primo Hoagies (21st and Chestnut) – It’s right on the edge of where lawyers in Center City work, but the hoagie is worth the walk.  Very filling, and the bread is outstanding.  You can order and take the hoagie back with you.
  • Slice (18th and Sansom) – A relative newcomer to the area, Slice opened up its Center City location within the past year.  Its specialty is thin crust pizza, and it features some good choices of gourmet toppings.

Everyone has their own personal favorites and preferences.  I’m more than open to some other good suggestions.

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