Suggested Field Trip: Krakus Market

Who needs Jax when you can do Polski Flips? (That’s what she said.)

There is a stretch of promised land over in Port Richmond where it’s still permanently 1986. It’s a place where Bonk’s and Byrne’s serve up Maryland blue crab all year long, Port Richmond Books remains a towering wonder, and a corner store called Sam’s sells Christmas decorations for one half of the year and wooder-ice for the other. But Richmond Street is mostly known for what it’s been for about a century now: The epicenter of Philly’s Polish community. And though many swear allegiance to Syrenka (YES) or The New Wave Cafe (INDEED) or Czerw’s (HOLY MOTHER OF GOD) for their fix of keilbasa and the like, Krakus Market remains the area’s one-stop shopping destination for everything you might need to construct a proper Polish feast at home.

Boasting smoked-fresh-daily kielbasa, golabki, bigos and pierogi (all homemade), Krakus also has mustards, soup bases, Polish juices and junk food and is basically a trip into another place and time. On our recent trip there, we found the place a little picked over (it was Orthodox Christmas), but still slinging a mean wedding kielbasa (we’ll let you write your own joke there) and bangin’ ‘rogis. Consider putting a Krakus trip into your 2013 insane Sunday dinner shopping rotation. And do not, under any circumstances, admit it to your physician.

Krakus Market, 3150 Richmond Street. 215-426-4336

  • maria

    Krakus is definitely a gritty one-stop shop, though like the article says, there are far better shops right around the corner.

    I’m a bit surprised about the mention of Orthodox Christmas. I guess the Ukrainian or Russian communities must have descended, because Poles are almost uniformly Roman Catholic (I think the percentage is something ridiculous like 90%) and don’t celebrate Orthodox holidays.

    Either way, avoid the weekends, when things to be thoroughly picked over and supplies are slim. Mid-week is just right.

  • Dish

    Thanks for giving Krakus the props it deserves! Well worth the trip.

  • Ringy Dingy

    I am adventurous and I love Polish food. I went there once in search of pierogi and kielbasi and whatever else might tempt ‘ski. The staff is friendly (and beautiful!), the space is tired, and I saw a rat scurry across the aisle and hide under a freezer. I still had the pierogi and they were amazing. But, I have not returned.

  • Stacey

    The only place to go for Pierogies and Kielbasa. Their pierogies are made by old church ladies! Doesn’t get more authentic than that!

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