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Old School Spotlight: Mancuso & Son Cheese Importers on Passyunk

NOTE: We at the Passyunk Post focus almost exclusively on what’s new in the neighborhood, but South Philly wouldn’t be such a great place if it weren’t for all that came before that. For that reason, we’ve decided to launch the Old School Spotlight, an occasional feature in which we demystify some of those places that have been around forever. Want to nominate a place for an Old School Spotlight? Email us at


Across the street from Adobe, Le Virtu, Fuel and Noir hides a little mom-and-pop store that most people don’t notice, despite that it’s been open for 70 years.

Lucio Mancuso & Son (1902 E. Passyunk) makes their own cheese (we got a delicious sampling of ricotta, mozzarella and baked mozzarella on our visit) and stocks a large array of imported items from Italy. The store is packed to the gills with coffee, biscotti, olives, bread, meats, olive oil and pasta. And the cheese is top quality.

Basically, we’re saying you don’t necessarily have to schlep up to DiBruno Bros. We got this.

The proprietor, who we assumed to be Mancuso, Jr., was happy to answer our questions. They are working on getting a website where customers can place orders online. If you want to reach out and talk cheese, you can call them at 215-389-1817. Their business card says they also make scamorze, which is similar to mozzarella. Their hours are 8-6:30 everyday, 8-3 on Sundays. Not too shabby!



The aforementioned scamorze.


This is how ricotta actually looks.


We don’t recognize a single item on this shelf. Which is exactly how it should be.

-  Rachel J. Cox

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4 Responses to Old School Spotlight: Mancuso & Son Cheese Importers on Passyunk

  1. Adam Z March 15, 2013 at 11:26 am #

    When I was a kid they used to serve homemmade water ice from the window – lemon with candied lemon peel and chocolate with chocolate chips. It was awesome.

  2. Byron Newport March 15, 2013 at 11:30 am #

    I went there once for some fresh mozzarella for a party. They said come back in 20 minutes. They made it fresh right then and there – even asking me what level of salt I like. It was really good, and the first time someone ever made cheese on the spot for me.

  3. Lexie March 15, 2013 at 12:52 pm #

    I agree with the Adam Z’s comment–their water ice is the best! My Pop Pop would take me there for treats when I was little.

    Mancuso’s homemade ricotta is phenomenal, Mr. Mancuso makes it fresh right there. It’s so good, I even take it to my friends in NYC.

    Something you might not know: the Mancusos also makes hoagies. They will slice the meat and cheese for you right in the store. I get intimidated by going into small, family-run shops, but Mr. (and presumably Mrs.) Mancuso have always been really helpful and kind to me.

  4. Joy March 15, 2013 at 8:48 pm #

    One of my absolute favorite spots on the avenue, especially for the wonderful ricotta. Thanks for giving them a little well-deserved love.

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