Last Thursday, I attended the ever so crazy Philadelphia Night Market in Fairmount. Night Market is an event where dozens of vendors sell food on the streets to hungry locals and traveling patrons. This event is so huge that since their launch in 2010, hundreds of thousands of people have made it to seven other night markets all across Philadelphia. Food trucks, tamale carts, pina coladas in a carved out pineapple and pizza ice cream – the works. Night market is a great way for people to see the bustling and thriving food scene that Philly has to offer.
I snagged me some fantastic Coffee Toffee ice cream from Little Baby’s. But consider yourself warned, Little Baby’s is GREAT, but it’s not for those who don’t like food adventures. What do I mean by this? If Earl Grey Sriracha, Balsamic Banana and Chocolate Teriyaki don’t make your mouth water, then Baby’s might not be for you. I haven’t had a flavor I didn’t like, though. My suggestion is, definitely give it a try at least once and you’ll know why Philly loves Little Baby’s (and they’re right next door to the first ever Pizza Museum in the nation, Pizza Brain!).
Sadly, I wasn’t able to get as much food as I wanted (and I wanted A LOT) because the lines were so long and it was a little hard to tell where they all started and ended. Thankfully, I was able to snag some treats from Taco Mondo, Foo and Sweet Box when the lines were dying down. It was a lesson learned and it took me 3 Night Markets to absorb it all in. But to avoid doing what I did, here are some quick tips to get the most out of your Night Market experience:
1. GO EARLY – If the event starts at 5:30, be there by 5 or 5:15. That half an hour window to 6 o’ clock can be the difference of no line to 40 people in line.
2. CARRY CASH – Nothing’s worse than being in line forever only to find out that the vendor doesn’t accept cards.
3. KNOW WHAT TO ORDER – To keep the lines moving, figure out what you want to order prior to approaching the window. Night Markets are always very loud and crowded, so be sure you know exactly what you want and be clear about it.
4. GET A MAP – Most events like these hand out maps of where specific vendors are so you can easily find the ones you want to try. Avail of these so you’re not wasting time trying to navigate through the crowds.
5. AVOID DRIVING – The streets around Night Market are always packed and you could easily waste 30 minutes just trying to find parking. Utilize SEPTA or a cab and leave your car at home.
The next Night Market is on June 20th from 6-10pm in West Oak Lane. For more info and other food events in Philadelphia, visit The Food Trust! Oh, and yes. That’s a bacon cupcake.