If you know me, Toronto is probably my favorite city on earth outside of Philly. If it wasn’t so damn cold, I’d consider spending a few years up there. On my various jaunts up North, I’ve eaten a drunken serving or two of poutine. It’s a Canadian national dish that consists of fries, gravy, cheese curds, and other toppings that range from peas to bacon. My time in Western PA at Indiana University of PA primed me for poutine, as everyone in the cafeteria seemed to eat their fries with gravy instead of ketchup. Once you go gravy, it’s hard to go back.
I was skeptical when I heard of a poutinerie showing up on South Street. Do us Yankees know how to make proper poutine? No need to worry. Smoke’s Poutinerie, albeit a chain, at 411 South Street is of Canadian origins.
Let me tell you this, they do poutine right. I have to confess that I only sampled the vegetarian version, but it was damn fine poutine at a reasonable price. I think mine was $7.
The fries were slathered in a thick, tasty gravy and they weren’t too mushy. The cheese curds were fresh and full of flavor.
Poutine is a fantastic comfort food snack. It’s an even better late-night drunken food.
Smoke’s did a nice job converting the old Auntie Ann’s pretzel joint on South Street. The place is bright and clean.
They are definitely proud of their Canadian history with red and Canadian Flags all around the joint. I guess it’s a reminder of their Canadian origin. Sorry about the gross Yankees hat in the photo.
They also have a chalkboard that you can write messages on while waiting for your order. How about a jawnville.com posting, peeps?
As the board indicates, this is also a fantastic, greasy, fat-filled hangover cure!
The place also has a “TRUST THE PROCESS” sign permanent fixed on their walls.
If you’ve had poutine, I think you’ll be satisfied. If you haven’t, this could change the way you see fries forever.
Give this place a try next time you’re wandering drunk around South Street.
411 South Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147