After four rounds of voting on an intensely competitive field that started with 32 fantastic sandwiches across the area, here’s what we learned: Philly’s gonna Philly.
Because even though we stocked the original deck with as much variety as possible, the two going head-to-head in our final round are about as classic as it gets.
Final Four voting was fast and furious, both online and in person at our tasting last Friday at the Shops at Liberty Place. In case you didn’t make it, we had adorable miniature versions of Federal Donuts fried chicken sandwiches, petite pita pockets with Mama’s falafel, hearty slices of Italian hoagies from Ricci’s and pint-sized roast porks from John’s. More than 250 people stopped by our tables in the Rotunda, and the samples were gone in just over an hour — everything was delicious.
Fried chicken sandwiches are super hot right now, and so is vegetarian eating, but those two are both relative newcomers on the Philadelphia sandwich scene. And tradition won out. By overwhelming margins, the finalists in the Billy Penn Ultimate Philly Sandwich Bracket are John’s Roast Pork and Ricci’s old fashioned Italian.
Now it gets serious. Which sandwich best represents our city? Hoagie or roast pork?
Correction: An earlier version of this story included an event; due to logistical concerns, we’ve had to cancel it. Make sure to follow us on Meetup to stay up to date on our next one.