All of our Featured Properties have good breakfast fare, but if you want some local color, here’s some ideas; Sabrina’s Café in the Italian Market. Good choice for a Sunday, when you can stroll the Market after breakfast and take home some great food. Try “THE TOTS” Friend panko-encrusted tater tots. Topped with grilled hot sausage hash; Caramelized onions, bell peppers, and fennel seed. Topped with basil chimichurri, sour cream, and over easy eggs.
Reading Terminal, with all its food booths is an adventure and there are lots of choices from fresh fruit smoothies to just out of the oven cinnamon buns to unusual coffees.
It’s Talula’s Garden is a favorite for Sunday brunch. The food is delicious, the setting inside or out is intimate, the coffee is great and they serve a killer Bloody. Could spend the day here. Since 1981, Day By Day has offered a wonderful weekend brunch. Their potato pancakes are worth the visit alone. Harp & Crown is a very cool space in the Rittenhouse area with a fantastic weekend brunch. Harper’s Garden has a delightful outside garden, an excellent brunch menu and $20 bottomless mimosas.
Of our Featured Restaurants, Amada and Estia are open for lunch during the week, including Friday. Fork, on Market Street, has won all kinds of awards in the “Best of Philly” competition including “Best Lunch”. The food is delicious, I like the outdoor dining or the little nook facing the street and they have a wonderful wine list. Tria, is another favorite, small plates, wonderful cheeses, killer wine list and outdoor dining as well. If you are in South Philly (and even if you are not, it’s worth the trip), Paradiso is a delightful Italian with wonderful service, excellent food and a great, mostly Italian wine list. The place that I keep returning to, however, is Rouge,on Rittenhouse Square. This wonderful bistro overlooks the park, opens its doors and windows when the weather is nice, has a great wine list and the roast chicken with white truffled mashed potatoes and their mouth watering burger is to die for. When the weather forces you inside, Ristorante Panorama on Front and Market at the Penn’s View Hotel is a charming room with hand painted murals, featuring excellent Italian food and over 120 wines by the glass. Continental , on Market Street, is an edgy and unique spot with an Asian theme and wonderful food…and killer martinis. Want to try a little something different? Take a look at the creperie Beau Monde. Sweet and savory crepes, a warming fireplace and outdoor seating in nice weather.
The Oyster House in Center City has been serving up fresh oysters for 40 years. Buck-a-shuck weekdays 5-7pm and Saturdays 9-11pm. Good crab cakes too!/.
Panorama at the Penn’s View Hotel has 150 wines by the glass. just amazing. Delicious Italian apps. Tria Cafe has an excellent wine list and maybe the best cheese selection. Barcelona Wine Bar has a wonderful oval, marble bar, fantastic Spanish wines and tapas. Bloomsday Cafe features “natural” wines with a comfort food menu and lots of snacks.
Morimoto, namesake of the original “Iron Chef”, sets the standard for sushi and “dinner as theater” in Philadelphia. Fresh, creative and exciting. The dining room is spectacular. Sushi lovers will not be disappointed.
Di Bruno Brothers, in the Italian Market and at 1730 Chestnut Street in the Rittenhouse Square area is one of those great specialty markets with everything a foodie could want; wonderful cheeses, pates, fois gras, sandwiches, smoked fish, pizza, salads, pastas, coffees, oils and charcuterie. They have kitchenware, gifts, a snack bar and sponsor a “First Friday” beer and cheese tasting each month. Worth the trip even if you are not planning a picnic.
My mouth is watering just at the thought of the juicy, delicious burger at Rouge on Rittenhouse Square. Served on a soft and toasted brioche bun, covered with Gruyere cheese and smothered with caramelized onions. Second choice would be Five Guys on Chestnut. These burgers are so good you feel like you are doing something wrong when you eat them.
There are very good steakhouses in Philadelphia; Mortons, Capital Grille and Barclay Prime to name a few, but for the overall experience; food, ambiance and service my favorite is: Butcher & Singer , evokes thoughts of old time supper clubs. The new, 2019, 45 seat Alpen Rose is getting rave reviews for its “re-imagined” steakhouse. Creative menu (dry-aged duck). Any steakhouse that serves Beef Wellington has my vote.
This is a debate that could last for hours. My son and I spent an afternoon sampling all the “top” cheese steaks and our consensus was that Tony Luke’s, was the best. Lots may disagree, but who else has tasted them all?
Ice cream is serious stuff in Philly and there are two places I really like; Scoop Deville, is the favorite of the City’s college kids, probably because they deliver. But the homemade ice cream and related items are delicious. Another hot spot is Tubby Robot.
Shane’s Handcrafted Candies, claims to be the oldest candy store in America (founded in 1876) and given the city’s history it just may be. At any rate, the chocolates are delicious and the store itself is a step back in time.
Cocktails in a major city afford plenty of great choices. When the weather isn’t great, head indoors to local favorite Buddakan for unusual cocktails, sake and delicious appetizers. Make sure you get your picture taken next to the Buddha. Continental on Market Street has terrific martinis, XIX Café at the Park Hyatt has an excellent raw bar to go with an extensive wine list and nice views of the City, Southwark, 701 S. 4th Street makes all the old “highballs” like Manhattans, Old Fashioneds, Rob Roys, Martinis. Ask for something “frufru” and they’ll tell you to go down the street. The Franklin Mortgage & Insurance Co. is another wonderful “retro” cocktail bar. Near Rittenhouse Square. The bartenders here are true artists. They’ll ask you the kinds of things you like in a drink and then make you the best libation you’ve ever had. Outside, Rouge on Rittenhouse Square is one of my favorites, Moshulu, a “tall ship” anchored at Penn’s Landing has great views and outside bars. Here’s two rooftop bars that we like; the Bok Bar (seasonal) and Irwin’s (open year round) great views from both.
Bar Hygge has been called “Best First Date” Restaurant by Philadelphia Magazine for its coziness. Indoor and outdoor seating, couches and comfortable chairs. Brick walls, industrial ceilings. Excellent apps. Also a “Best of Philly” winner for Best Cocktail Bar is R&D Bar. Pretty amazing cocktail list.