Res Ipsa is a small cafe located at 22nd and Walnut, just past the coveted area of Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia. I had heard rumblings of a new cafe open in that area and found myself needing lunch on a Saturday after work. I took a walk on a brisk Philly afternoon to find respite at the neon red triangle.

Res Ipsa
2218 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
(267) 519-0329

  • Cafe au lait
  • Italian Breakfast
  • Root Cake
Since I was freezing I immediately ordered a cafe au lait to start warming myself up and waiting for a table. It happened to be packed and every little marble table was occupied. Then after about 5-10 minutes there were only a few tables left that were full. There was one table camped out doing work on their laptops, but there is no WiFi, so I’m not quite sure how they attracted that type of clientele.
I started with the Italian breakfast, which included two eggs, fennel sausage, broccoli rabe, cannellini beans and a house-made english muffin. Whenever I order anything with beans I automatically ask for them to be left off the dish. I.hate.beans. For some reason, I didn’t do that this time and I’m so thankful that I did. Those beans in combination with that broccoli rabe (a personal fave) was seriously some of the best I’ve ever had. I would say I could become a bean eater because of that dish. The eggs were simplistic and cooked perfectly and topped with cheese. The fennel sausage was delicious. It wasn’t too overpowering on the fennel flavor and paired really nicely with the beans and rabe. The english muffin is also a standout. Made in house, it’s perfectly airy and light. You can choose to get it with jam or butter, but I had it plain and dipped it into my eggs and threw the sausage on top of it.
I wanted something sweet and saw on the menu a root cake. They were currently in the process of baking them and I would be getting one fresh out of the oven when it was ready. Yes! It’s the most adorable carrot cake you could imagine. I loved the flavor of the cake, which was full of a good amount of carrot chunks, fill and topped with cream cheese frosting and pepita seeds. I honestly didn’t really care for the cream cheese frosting, but everything else was perfect.
The ambience of the space is clean lines and simplistic. Right up my alley. I loved the succulents on the wall to the marble tables. Their signature logo is a red triangle, which is lit up in neon over the entrance. During the day it’s a cafe and then it switches to a more sophisticated dinner service after 5pm. I can’t wait to get back to try it!
Res Ipsa means “the thing that speaks for itself” and that is exactly what this new cafe is accomplishing.

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