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Jun 4, 2007 09:28 PM

Fine Dining: Where?

I'm in Philly for this Friday night. I'm a passionate, sophisticated 'foodie' from Seattle. Where to eat in Philly? Please Help!

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  1. You may have difficulty getting reservations, but:
    Vetri (or try Osteria)
    Matyson (BYO)
    .... or a hundred other places

    2 Replies
      1. re: idia

        Bliss - on Broad Street
        If you can not get in at Le Bec Fin - go to the downstairs ... first come first serve basis.
        Davio's or Barclay Prime (Rittenhouse Square Area) both steak places, Davio's has Italian also.

    1. If you're by yourself, and it sounds like you are, I'd head to Osteria and sit at the bar. It's tough to get a table there but there are usually a couple seats at the bar.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Buckethead

        Amada definitely, and then you can walk around the old city neighborhood. I also second Osteria.

      2. If you are a fan of the Iron Chef, Morimoto is expensive, but fun.

        1. Maybe I'm too picky, but I'd quibble with some of the recommendations below. In particular, I think Davio's, Barclay Prime, and Morimoto may be too scene-y and not "foodie" enough for the poster. I really enjoy the food at Barclay and Morimoto (Davio's is nothing to write home about), but neither really screams "sophistication" to me. Both restaurants can be very loud, and I find their menus (while delicious) to be very show-offy.

          At the other end of the spectrum, Le Bec Fin (again, no complaints about the food) is very formal and not really conducive to "passion," in my opinion. It's like the restaurant equivalent of a museum. Also, like Morimoto and Barclay, it's a bit self-referential. To a lesser degree, the same criticism might apply to Lacroix, though frankly I think the food at Lacroix is better.

          I think that if you're coming to Philly from out of town, you should try a restaurant that is uniquely Philadelphian, where the focus is purely on the FOOD, rather than on chic decor, name recognition, status, etc. Of the options listed already, I think Vetri (if you can get in), Osteria and Matyson are all good choices; I haven't yet been to James, Bliss or Gayle. I might also suggest Marigold Kitchen, Lolita, Xochitl, Ansill, Tinto (though the space is a little cramped) or Amada (thought it also tends to get very noisy).

          Let us know where you end up!

          2 Replies
          1. re: nns

            I agree with you, but the food is very overpriced at Lacroix and nothing to write home about.

            1. re: nns

              If you search for my notes on Le Bec Fin, for the level that they hold themselves at their food doesn't even come close to rising to that level, nor does the service in my experience.

            2. I'm not as good with dinner places in Philly, but if you have time for breakfast on Saturday morning, I'd recommend Sabrina's down near Little Italy. I'd also try to work ina trip to DiBruno Bros. in the Rittenhouse Square area (I think on Chestnut between 16th and 17th - somewhere around there). The cheese case alone is worth a trip for any self-described foodie! Enjoy.