Potato Week Q&A: Philly’s Best French Fry Dipping Sauces

So remember yesterday when we put out our official Potato Week list of the best french fry dipping sauces in Philly? Yeah, that was fun. But, apparently, it also stirred a little bit of debate among Philadelphia’s fry-dipping cognoscenti. So we thought it might be nice if we took a moment to answer some of the questions posed in the comments section about our methods, taste, math skills and general level of awesomeness.

Question, by Salas:

Nothing from European Republic? They’ve got 30-40 dipping sauces, many of which are really good.

Answer, by Foobooz

Okay, so not the most ringing endorsement. But that’s cool. To answer your question, Salas, no. It was a near thing, but European Republic narrowly missed out final cut of ten restaurants. In fact, I believe it got bumped by 500 Degrees at the last minute. And considering that the dipping sauce we picked up from 500 Degrees ended up tasting like a rejected experiment in crab cake sauce by someone WAY too much in love with their Robot Coupe, it might be that we made the wrong choice.

That’s how these things go sometimes. But we’ll keep it in mind next time we feel like spending a whole day essentially eating mayonnaise right out of the jar.

Question, by Erin

Oh c’mon. The Royal Tavern has been doing malt vin mayo for so long. Curious if it was even a contender.

Answer, by Foobooz:

Yup, it was. The Royal Tavern was part of the final 10, but failed to make the cut. Not that we don’t like the place (because we really, really do), but the malt vinegar mayo at Underdogs was more…moving. The malt vinegar flavor was much more powerful, and barely balanced by the mayo. When stacked up head-to-head, the Royal’s version just came off a little flat.

Question, by DiParma

How do you not include the Curry Ketchup Mayo from Resurrection Ale House? Bogus!

Answer, by Foobooz

Again, we did. And all of us, having had it before, totally expected it to come out in the top 5. But then we tasted it going straight up against all these other sauces and… Well, you can see what happened. In comparison to some of the other sauces in front of us, Resurrection’s curry ketchup just came off flat and forgettable.

Question, by No

I’d still like to know who else was in the competition.

Answer, by Foobooz

Our final 10 were:

American Sardine Bar
Perch Pub
Royal Tavern
500 Degrees
Hot Diggity
Resurrection Ale House
Village Whiskey
South Philly Tap Room
Monk’s Cafe

Question, by Jay

I’m confused, Jason, and would like you to clear this up. In number 5, you say it was your favorite from Underdogs. So how come number 4 is also from Underdogs? Isn’t that, by definition, your favorite?

Answer, by Foobooz

Because I’m really bad at math, Jay. Counting to 5? Sometimes that’s too much for me. Especially when I turned part of my dipping-sauce-collecting walk around the neighborhood into a bar crawl. In any event, the order stands, but let it be said that we loved both of those Underdogs sauces, that I was maybe a little bit over-excited by the spicy peanut variety, but when the final tally was made, the malt vinegar mayo was just a smidge better.

That clear everything up for everybody? Cool. Have a happy Potato Week.