I am such a fattie. At least I can say now I’m a 20-year-old fattie, since Monday was my birthday (I wish I was allowed to use exclamation points).
My celebration started last Tuesday, when I went to scope out some sweet spots in Philly. Of course, no one was available to join me. You better believe I went by myself and had a fabulous time.
Dinner was an early, boring event. Tuesday was all about the dessert. My first stop was Maron Chocolates and Scoop de Ville. The fat kid that I am, I instantly went for the miniature cake section, bypassing the shelves of gift items, packaged candies, collector’s items and ice cream toppings.
I ordered their caramel gianduja dome. Gianduja is a smooth, hazelnut-flavored chocolate, by the way. The dome had regular chocolate and gianduja mousse with jaconde (basically a regular cake with extra almond flour and eggs) soaked in bourbon syrup.
The whole cake was covered in chocolate ganache, praline and caramel syrups. I think this is where I began fading into a sugar coma.
The Scoop de Ville section of the store features ice cream, frozen yogurt and sugar-free flavors that you can blend. You pick a flavor and mix in any of the extensive list of toppings that range from Rice Krispies to Oreo Cookies to wheat germ. Yummy.
They also have special flavors to choose from, like the popular Capt. Ethan’s Erotica, with chocolate yogurt or ice cream, bananas, wet walnuts and Cap’n Crunch cereal.
I was reluctant to ask what a ‘wet walnut’ was, so if you find out, drop me a line. Their slogan said it best, “Life is short, eat dessert first.”
I poked my head out of Scoop de Ville looking for someone to roll me over to Penn’s Landing for my final sugar intake. I actually considered walking the 17 odd blocks to help begin digestion. Thanks to SEPTA, I was able to retain all those fat calories and ride in style.
Franklin Fountain sits on a dark street corner, not far from the Old City action of Tangerine and Anjou. Stepping inside took me back to a day right out of It’s a Wonderful Life.
Although only open about a year, the antique lamps, stools, floor and signs reflected something right out of an old soda fountain. They, according to the staff, own the oldest operating soda fountain in the country.
How about that? Look up at the fans, down at the restored tile floor and over to the old-fashioned cash register.
Twenty-two flavors of ice cream and 25 soda flavors make the choices endless. They are developing a hot soda menu (interesting, right?) to attract more people during the colder months, although they close during January and February.
Most of their recipes are around 100 years old, found in old cookbooks. Try a phosphate – a hand-mixed soda with an extra zing of citric acid for more bubbles.
Their sundaes and banana splits have cute names, like Mt. Vesuvius and the Stock Market Crunch, and are definitely meant for two people. I ordered the Franklin Mint, which showed off their exclusive mint chocolate chip ice cream recipe, only made for their store.
Atop the nearly five scoops was marshmallow crème, hot fudge, creme de menthe, whipped cream and a minty cordial cherry. The friendly woman who waited upon me asked if I was waiting for someone to share it with.
She didn’t know of my Overeaters Anonymous member card. The sundae was, in fact, too big but was clearly my favorite stop that evening.
My sloth-like self and I really enjoyed this shake-inducing birthday evening. Alone wasn’t half bad; there were less people to share with.
Most everything you can order for a single serving is under $10 and usually under $7 with tax. So, let one (or both, if you’re a pig like me) of these dessert stops give you a sugar rush next time you head downtown.
Brianna Barry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.