1301 S 11th St, Philadelphia, PA | Directions 1914739.933335 -75.162014
Neighborhoods: Bella Vista/ Southwark, South Philadelphia
No, no, no – Very small and uncomfortable space. The few tables in the restaurant can seat only two people comfortably.
Prefixed menu is very limited, and the cook does not make any alterations to the menu. Not vegan or vegetarian friendly. Food is average at best.
Definitely not a place to go with more than two people, not kid friendly, not dog friendly, not people friendly.
I wish there was a 0-star option.
Over hyped and over priced – The place is cute and "homey"and the staff is attentive and friendly but there were only 4 choices on the board all bkfst type no lunch just some pancakes, waffles and one choice of an omlet w turtle! I'm not really a pancaake/waffle eater and I was hesitant to try turtle... I had the meatloaf which was ok. Portions are good but the food is decent not grt. So 2 bkfst w 2 coffees ran abt 35 dollars for a mediocore meal. Its trendy but not grt
Not just a Novelty! – This is my first post, I was there a good 6 months or so ago but I recall a very pleasant experience. I've lived in the city for a couple of years now and wanted something different from my usual sunday Midtown Continental Brunch. After reading about Carmen's on Citysearch, my girlfriend and I decided to venture to check out the excitement. We loved the whole experience and have been meaning to make another trip back. Don't be deterred by the lack of choices because every option on the board sounded delicious. We both Loved our meals. It's not your typical brunch spot and I can see how the atmosphere would not be for everyone but everyone should at least try it out once. The Coffee was great, The place is very small but has very home-ish feel to it. Big Portions. When it comes right down to it, the food makes it all worth the visit. Might not want to bring your kids because their are some profane souvenirs scattered around the place. When I was there, a group was eating on the pickup truck parked out front and it briefly started to rain while they were out there and they continued to eat right through the rain, it was quite a sight they seemed to enjoy the experience.
The recent reviews are nuts! Carman's is amazing (and I'm picky!) – After seeing the most recent reviews, I just HAD to write something. I have been going to Carman's since I moved to the area (about 2 years ago) and have always had a great experience. The wait staff is always very professional and friendly and the food is always fantastic! (and you get a lot of it!).
As for cleanliness, I have never had dirty dishes or experienced any of the issues cited by the other reviews and I have been seated at both the counter (as a party of 2) and at tables (as a party of 3 or 4). Carman's is not the place for prudish people (maybe that was the previous reviewer's issue?) as her decor tends towards the phallic, but if you like a nice, neighborhood place and are an accommodating, friendly person looking for a great meal, Carman's is your place!! Whiners can go wait an hour in line for the mediocre food at Sabrina's.
Condemned! – I happen to live a few houses away from Carman's and I've eaten there only once when she first opened, swearing to never go back again. The food there is not particularly great, but it is filling, as you receive large portions, and some of her dishes are "unique". However, there are several things that has thrown me off with this place...
1) Her restaurant isn't very clean. Yes, she does have a sinkload of dirty dishes which she frequently goes back and forth to wash, in between cooking her customer's meals.
2) Occasionally she keeps her dog inside to roam around the dining area freely to interact with customers while they're eating.
3) Her business card says, 'She put the c*** back in country cooking'. I don't know about you, but I don't want her c*** anywhere near my food. Even the suggestion is enough to make me hurl! :-o
4) You're able to dine al fresco... In the back of her pick-up truck on a picnic bench, complete with an umbrella for those ultra-sunny days. A far cry from a hilltop in the countryside, sitting on a blanket under a shady tree, with a picnic basket. Instead you get the load noises and distinctive smells of the city streets, complete with litter wafting by on a windy day.
5) B.Y.O.B.??? Are you kidding me? This place is closed by 2pm. Who the heck is drinking alcohol before then? Maybe it's the people who want champagne with their Sunday brunch. Conveniently enough, there's a liquor store right across the street, so if you didn't bring any booze, it's a hop, skip, and a jump away. You'll be back before your eggs are done cooking. I don't know.
This may be just my opinion, but this place is an absolute "dive"! I really don't know what all the rave is about this place. Maybe it's the lure of country cooking in a big city, or the small diner atmosphere the place tends to exude. As for me, I've still never gone back to eat there and I have no intention to do so, anytime in the near or distant future.
Are you joking? – I am an absolute breakfast fanatic and can and will travel quite a ways for a new or interesting breakfast spot. I went here for breakfast with two friends having read all the great reviews. Was a little surprised when we walked in and all the tables were set for couples and covered in dirty dishes. We were told parties of three or more had to sit at the counter, which seemed a bit odd. The menu sounded good, but once we ordered, Carman spent more than 10 minutes talking to some friends before beginning to cook our order.(it's a one woman show) The food (a half hour later) looked appealing but both the potatoes and toast were so stale and dry as to be inedible. The rest of the food was okay, though each dish had a fairly serious flaw in it's cooking. My omelette for example was made with veggies that had not been drained, so it was served on a plate floating in a 1/4" of water. Carman does dishes in the middle of the dining room while the customers eat, and goes from scraping dishes to handling food and back again. All through the meal, Carman would call out questions to us relating to the conversation we were having, which was more than a bit distracting.
I'm not quite sure what the appeal of this place is, maybe we caught it on a VERY bad day. The fact that we were there for over an hour without any of the dirty dishes being cleared away tells me this is likely just the way it is. This place has some die hard fans, but it makes me wonder if they are all locals that just eat there for the convenience, as I cannot fathom any other attraction.
Fabulous - Best Brunch/Breakfast in Philadelphia – WOW. Carman, I miss your brunch, South Philly, Gay Philly, and the comraderie of your establishment. I moved to Boston two years ago from South Philly. I just recommended your breakfast to my buddies from Boston. Glad to see you are doing well.
Thanks! Phone is 267-934-2488!
Hans C. Steuber
Best brunch for this baltimore boy – fantastic brunch. invited my parents up from baltimore, a little nervous at first, about the "type" of place and introducing my new girlfriend. however things went better than expected. not only is the food exceptional, waiter outstanding, but Carmans is the type of place you not only want to frequent, but you want to be a regular.
kick butt breakfast! – This place makes a fantastic breakfast. It's worth the wait which there usually is. The atmosphere is funky and retro and warm.
amazing brunch – Perfect for breakfast any day. Comfortable and friendly with great french toast! This is my favorite brunch spot...worth the wait
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