The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

French Toast from Sabrina's and a Burger from Monk's

This entry originally took place on March 1.

Like many foods deemed appropriate for breakfast, French toast (well, good French toast) is inherently indulgent. Take some thick slices of bread—preferably of the fluffy, eggy sort—soak in an egg-milk-sugar bath, pan-fry the saturated slices, and serve with maple syrup/butter/whipped cream/jelly beans/what have you.

stuffed caramelized challah french toast

But sometimes, you want more than that. Sabrina's Cafe fills the void in your French toast-loving heart with their Stuffed Caramelized Challah French Toast. It's like a gigantic sandwich...made of fluffy French toast bricks...cemented together with a thick layer of sweet cream cheese goo.


Unfortunately, the bread was a bit on the dry side and would've benefited from being allowed more time to bathe in a milky egg solution. But at least there was an excessive amount of cream cheese filling and maple syrup to provide some moisture. And sugar.

dig in! I nom
Alex and I race to finish. Kind of.

When Alex said we should split an order of the French toast, my first reaction was of skepticism. But damn—half an order is a lot (and considering a whole is $9.79, it's a great deal), more than one person needs to eat in one sitting. If you're eating by yourself you should be able to just order half (as a lone diner next to us did). If you're eating with a friend, I'd suggest splitting a half-order of the stuffed French toast along with something else between the two of you; you wouldn't want your taste buds to get sick of eggy bready cream cheesy goodness.

sweet potato fries

We supplemented our French toast bombs with deep fried sticks of sweet potato dusted with confectioners sugar. Because that's its natural pair. In the wild tundra of Breakfastland. They were quite good, as sweet potato fries tend to be—or as most deep fried starchy things tend to be. I must admit that I usually go for regular fries over sweet potato because sweet potato tend to be less crispy. These were probably mid-crispy; didn't provide much crunch, but they weren't limp.

Monk's Cafe
Monk's Cafe

AND THEN WE ATE wait, we took a break.

Broad Street
Broad Street.

...Which involved walking back to Alex's apartment and passing Broad Street...

building scar
That building looks like it needs a hug.

...And this scarred building...

little house
Little building, oh no!

...And this old, lovely looking wee building ominously taken over by a new huge-ass complex of some sort.

surfing the webs

When we got back to his apartment, we killed some time by doing what we do best: SURF THE INTERNET. (Ignore the unhinged closet doors.)

Ah, there it is.

And then we continued to eat beyond our bodies' needs by going to Monk's Cafe where I couldn't help but get a burger to follow up on the previous night's burger. I ordered the Antwerp topped with sottocenere truffle cheese and shitake mushroom. Medium rare, as always.


The juicy patty was a great improvement over the previous night's—it had flavor!, salt!, beefiness!—but the bun was terrible. Where a regular squishy burger bun should've been was a rather dense and dry ciabatta roll that did nothing to complement the meat, but did everything to obscure it. My first tactic to defeat the bun was to remove the top and eat my burger open-faced, but after a while I ended up removing the bottom as well and just eating the meat for an unintentionally Atkins-style meal. Meat = good! Bun = makes boppy cry.


The skinny fries were good—not especially great or bad. I am a lover of most deep fried things, after all.

one of the beer menus

Something worth noting, as Monk's has about a bagillion beers (because that's their, yeah), is that they had a beer that I didn't find entirely unpalatable! (For any new readers, you should know that I don't like the taste of alcohol. Really don't like it. And I've tried many an alcoholic beverage.) After taking a sip of Alex's Flemish sour ale, my first impression was of lemon-flavored soda...mixed with beer. Would I crave it? Hell no. But if I had to order a beer at gunpoint, I'd be alright with it.

After writing about Monk's burger on AHT, I have an arsenal of burger recs to check out on my next visit to Philly. The marriage of awesome patty-to-bun will be found.

Shortly after burgering, I sadly left the city of Alex and Brotherly Love and returned to New York. Methinks I didn't eat much for dinner that night.

A Day of Pork and Beef from DiNic's and Royal Tavern
Sweets in Philadelphia: Capogiro and Miel
Philly Day 3: Brunch at The Pink Rose, and a Good Dog Burger
Philly, Day 2: Breakfast Pizza, a Most Awesome Brunch Sandwich from Morning Glory Diner


Sabrina's Cafe
910 Christian St
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Monk's Cafe
264 S 16th St
Philadelphia, PA 19102


Marvo / March 22, 2009 1:23 AM

Holy bread! Those are some thick slices of French toast. It looks like a tall piece of cake and it takes half a bottle of syrup to cover than dang thing.

But it does make me want French toast right now.

I don't care if it's 7:22 pm. I'm an adult and I can do whatever I want.

French toast here I come.

Mikey / March 22, 2009 7:27 AM

Whoa. On the first pic the French Toast Monster doesn't look very big, but when i saw the pics with you and Alex in it, i had to step away from the monitor. Seriously, it looks like the toast will have YOU for breakfast.

piccola / March 22, 2009 8:21 AM

That's half a loaf of bread in French toast form. What I don't get is how you can have sugar-covered sweet potato fries with that. Too much sugar. I'd think you would have gone with the bacon.

Laura [What I Like] / March 22, 2009 12:22 PM

I do like Sabrina's, but my god that wait is just's eggs for god's sake! I do enjoy the over the topness of that french toast though. As for Monk's, I've always thought the best thing about that place is the beer!

LaserLiza / March 22, 2009 1:06 PM

I now have to share my experience of the official most awesome French toast EVER. I got it at a restaurant in Maine while I was on vacation. Okay. First, you take a kind of light lemony bread, sandwich in some cream cheese, and serve it with a TON of wild blueberries. It's good. Like o-my-gosh-I-am-so-full-but-I -must-keep-eating good. Best. French. Toast. Ever. Period.

noble pig / March 22, 2009 3:19 PM

Oh my word that is French Toast for me...holy, holy, holy cow. I am absolutely in love.

What a beautiful site you have!

Edd / March 22, 2009 6:22 PM

holy shit!!! that french toast is where can i get myself some? That shot of broad street is excellent by the way

roboppy / March 22, 2009 7:45 PM

Marvo: French toast is totally acceptable to eat at 7:22 pm. DEFY CONVENTION! BE YOUR OWN FRENCH TOAST-LOVING MAN!!

Mikey: I forgot how large it was until I saw the human scale...heh. I can't remember if I finished mine. Doh.

piccola: Oh noo, I don't really like bacon. I should write a post about that and BLOW PEOPLES' MINDS!

Justin: It totally does. I feel like it would cost way more in NYC though. saaad.

Laura: I think we went just early enough to not have to wait, WOOHOO! (Like 10 am?) There was a bit of a crowd when we left. Too bad I'm not more into beer or else Monk's would be awesomer.

LaserLiza: Crap, that sounds really good. Someone needs to make that here...hmm..

noble pig: I wish all french toast came stuffed with cream cheese.

Edd: Maybe you can try to make something like it yourself? I suppose it wouldn't be too hard, but I'm pretty lazyy...

Thanks! Sometimes I take photos of NON FOOD, YAY!

Jasmine / March 22, 2009 8:37 PM

Damn. I didn't know the french toast was that huge. It looks really sweet and rich. I wish I could indulge like that. The burger looks really cute, and I'm sorry to hear that the bread was bad. So I guess it was kind of like eating a mini steak with stuff on top. Which isn't bad.

ruth / March 23, 2009 12:09 AM

next time you're in philly, try the french toast at Rx on 45th(ish?) and spruce. they dip it in cornflakes or something and it's so awesome. i tried to make it myself since i'm in ny now but i failed miserably. =(

jesi / March 23, 2009 1:05 AM

when i first saw the french toast, i made a sound... oh, kind of like weeping. like UGHHHH I WANT FRENCH TOAST, and i want to cry about my current french-toastless state.
also, belgian-style beer is a great non-beer-drinkers beer. thats what i started drinking [blue moon, chimais etc] and what got me into beer in the first place. who can argue with a beer you put a slice of orange into?

anna / March 23, 2009 9:26 AM

That French toast is terrifying, and I've eaten some scary French toast in my day. And I love the shot of the little old building next to the big mean-looking new complex.

jetgirl / March 23, 2009 10:55 AM

dude, that burger ain't cooked... >_< DONT GET SICK!

That french toast looked astounding, save the inch thick slab of creme in the middle. Sweet potato fries are definitely good with powdered sugar.

and now im hungry >_<

Betty / March 23, 2009 8:18 PM

wow nice pic
i havent eaten french toast at a cafe/restaurant before

and the ones i tried making - arent that nice lol

Morten / March 24, 2009 5:57 AM

The French toast must be one of the most American foods I've ever seen a photo of. Btw: is French toast an American invention, or is it like French fries?

SuperChomp / March 24, 2009 8:16 AM

The enormity of that french toast monster is only clear when in context of being in front of the two of you. It's like a breeze block (cinder block)!

The little house with the new complex attached reminds me of the end of Batteries Not Included...

Heavenly Housewife / March 24, 2009 8:30 AM

just wanted to tell you I really like reading your website, so I am giving you the Sisterhood Award. Check it out on my latest blog entry.

roboppy / March 24, 2009 9:14 AM

Jasmine: Mini steak with stuff..ya, not so bad. I would've wanted rice to go with it...mmm rice.

ruth: Whoaa that sounds awesome. Thanks for the rec!

jesi: Take this hanky: [hanky]

anna: Now I want to make a blog dedicated to scary French toast. What a vast world it is.

jetgirl: Sure it is..just medium rare. bwaha. I always order medium rare. Anything cooked past that tends to taste bad to be, although there are exceptions. Actually, only Shopsins is the

Betty: The ones I've tried to make aren't so great lookin either. :(

Morten: Apparently it was invented in Rome? But with cream cheese. Har har.

SuperChomp: I haven't seen Batteries Not Included. Although now I am looking it up..

Heavenly Housewife: Thanks! As for how I fit through my front door..I don't know..I expect my metabolism to stop working at some point.

KT / March 24, 2009 10:16 AM

The pictures of both look amazing, and made me instantly crave french toast and burgers. It was only when I started reading did I realize they weren't nearly as good "in real life" as in the pictures! BTW, I think I'm giving up on ciabatta rolls. They are always a bit dry, and they tend to obscure whatever is on the inside.

foodzings / March 27, 2009 8:42 AM

that french toast definitely had me beat. there's no way a regular human being can win over those freakish portions. for amazing sweet potato fries in philly, try ants pants cafe!

Morgan / March 27, 2009 3:31 PM

Holy holy @ the French Toast cake! I love your blog! Every time my boyfriend and I travel somewhere we always like to try out the happening restaurants of the area and avoid the blatant chains. I will have to investigate your blog a little bit more for the next time we travel!

All the best!

roboppy / March 28, 2009 11:35 AM

KT: Ciabatta rolls don't have to suck..but I feel like they usually don't work with burgers. There are burger buns specifically made for burgers! I wish they were used more often.

reddoorread: YAY DROOLIES! That almost sounds like a disease. "I gave you the droolies."

foodzings: Thanks for the rec!

QuinTazz / March 31, 2009 10:58 PM

Robyn, just found your blog and am really enjoying it - thanks for all the great pictures! However, this post compels me to comment - you went to Monk's and didn't have mussels?!? You MUST go back next time you're in Philly! Oh, and if by chance you ever do have to order a beer at gunpoint - go for a Lindemann's Framboise, it's full of raspberry goodness, but not too sweet..... mmm!

roboppy / April 2, 2009 11:01 PM

QuinTazz: Thanks for visiting! I'm afraid I'm not a big fan of mussels. Or any shellfish in particular, unfortunately. :[ I do like Lindemann's Framboise! :)

Generic Viagra / October 15, 2010 4:43 PM

I don't like to visit some restaurants because sometimes those are so fatty and unclean but I love this place for that because it is great and the food is delicious of course I can't avoid the banana's cake because it is great.

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