Philadelphia's Tastiest Tour
An Inside Look at Chew Philly
Sink your teeth into Philadelphia’s best foods with Chew Philly food tours. With the Authentic Philly Food Tour, guests will experience not only great food but the charming, community feel of the neighborhoods themselves.
After working for tours in Chicago and Baltimore, founder of Chew Philly Elyse Castillo was looking to create a job for herself that worked around her children’s schedule soon after moving to her husband’s hometown of Philadelphia. Her husband suggested food tours. Castillo agreed that cultural food of Philly was a great idea, especially since their neighborhood was filled with small businesses.
Don’t expect just to eat a few cheesesteaks and call it a day. “A lot of tours feature the same foods such as a cheesesteak tour or a chocolate tour. Our tour is focused on the community and the neighborhood itself. I did a lot of research on the area and there are hundreds of years of history here,” says Castillo. “We focus on the businesses themselves.”
One of the most popular stops on a Chew Philly food tour, is Marchiano’s, a third generation restaurant that features a delicious Philadelphia staple: tomato pie. It starts with a mouth-watering focaccia crust, topped with homemade tomato sauce and a light dusting of cheese. While it may sound similar to a pizza, minus the cheese, tomato pie is served at room temperature or slightly chilled.
It’s no secret Philly is known for its cheesesteaks and one of Castillo’s favorite places to get one is Sorrentino's. “They’ve been open for 32 years and it’s all in the family. They don’t follow trends of cheesesteaks, they make old school cheesesteaks. It’s such a warm and inviting atmosphere with an old-school Philly feeling to it. They know people by name, and by their order,” she says.
Beyond cheesesteaks, Philly is home to many other scrumptious sandwiches. One sandwich, which Castillo describes as one of the favorites of those on her tour, is the Schmitter, developed by McNally’s, a restaurant that opened in 1921. This iconic sandwich has layers of roast beef, cooked salami, grilled tomatoes and fried onions, completed with a signature sauce on a Kaiser roll. (Are you drooling yet??!)
Castillo is passionate about supporting small businesses in the area and loves providing these restaurants with returning guests. “When I’m giving tours, I see people in the restaurants who have been on my tour before. It’s great to see them bringing other people into these locations,” she says.
Let Castillo show you the delicious neighborhoods and delicacies of Philly when you book a tour with Chew Philly. Tours are 2.5 hours long and cover 1.7 miles and the neighborhood is hilly and has flights of outdoor stairs, so plan accordingly.
- By Ettractions Digital Content Editor PAULA MARINO
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