We dropped by the grand opening day of La Copine, a new food cart serving up brunch foods on the weekend in the corner patio lot of 2nd and Poplar Streets. La Copine is run by Nikki Hill (former sous chef at Barbuzzo) and Claire Wadsworth.
This corner lot and former spot of the shuttered Arbol Cafe is now home to Garden Variety, an open air market featuring food carts (weekend brunch by La Copine, dinner by a yet to be named chef, and late night snacks by Dapper Dog), a monthly supper club by La Copine, artists' flea markets, concerts, and commissioned public art projects. Sounds exciting!
La Copine was running out of Dapper Dog's cart on opening day, but they hope to shortly be in their own cart, which was parked in the back corner of the tree-shaded patio. Tables, chairs and tents were brought out to give the lot a feel of a pop-up cafe, and lend a little comfort to cart dining.
The small menu has a few of breakfasty items: breakfast sandwich, hash browns, and banana bread; and a few lunchy items: flatbread, arugula salad, and slaw. According to their menu, all produce is locally sourced and/or organic, and the cage free eggs and pork for sausage comes from Meadow Run Farm.
Iced coffee, French press coffee, iced herbal tea, hot tea, fresh orange juice and local soda are your beverage choices.The $5 Englich muffin breakfast sandwich comes with scrambled eggs, cheddar, and tomato jam, but for $7 can be upgraded with sausage or veggie sausage. I think you know which one we chose!
For $10 you can get the "special," which is a breakfast sandwich, hash browns, and iced beverage.
This is a pretty classic breakfast sandwich with just a little jazz from tomato jam. The veggie patty is made with a blend of various grains, mushrooms, and onions, and has a great, peppery sausage flavor.The $8 flatbread, which I was imagining as a grilled pizza, not 5 or 6 very thin, cracker-like chips we were served, comes with bleu cheese, figs, prosciutto, lavender honey gastrique, and mache. Obviously, we skipped the prosciutto!
The flat bread tastes great — you just can't go wrong with the combination of pungent bleu cheese, sweet figs, and tart vinegar reduction — but for $8 I expect something a bit more filling, or at least a price reduction for omitting the prosciutto.The $3 side of carrot and cabbage coleslaw is studded with golden raisins, and dressed with a curry spiced Greek yogurt. All of the ingredients combine for a very pleasant coleslaw without screaming curry, or yogurt, or sweet, or tart.
La Copine is a great addition to the growing food cart scene, and in a great outdoor location. Also in La Copine's repertoire are roving supper clubs, catering service and a prepared-foods line.
209 Poplar St., Philadelphia, PA 19123
Saturday and Sunday brunch