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PASTA PASTA PASTA! where should we go?

pamd Jun 26, 2007 01:18 PM

My husband runs long distances weekly, so the night before the run he likes to eat pasta. So, I take this as an opportunity to try out many great places (as well as cooking up new & exciting dishes). Looking for suggestions in both the city & the burbs. Not looking for all expensive places, as weekly it could get out of hand- so a variety of price ranges. I eat anything, not just pasta. TIA

went to From the Boot last week, and have been to Fellini in Berwyn (mediocre IMO, but did fit the pasta criteria for him for sure)

  1. joluvscards Jun 26, 2007 01:30 PM

    For my pasta fixes I like:
    La Laconda - eat outside if possible, poor ventilation

    2 Replies
    1. re: joluvscards
      leavethegun Jun 26, 2007 03:01 PM

      I'll add Cucina Forte on 8th street to that list. Not inspiring, but solid. Very good gnocchi, and cheese ravioli. Go with the red sauce. Friendly.

      1. re: joluvscards
        pamd Jul 8, 2007 07:44 PM

        Went to Tre Scalini & had a wonderful meal! And it was a great place to have young kids along, they were so friendly & accommodating (probably since the owners have a 15 month old). We had a great (special) appetizer- calamari & white bean bruchetta with mussels. Entrees were the black pasta with shrimp & crab, and veal with mushrooms, and spaghetti bolognese for my son.

      2. p
        Philly Ray Jun 26, 2007 06:01 PM

        The pastas at Paradiso are very good. The pappardelle with wild mushroom ragout is my favorite.


        1 Reply
        1. re: Philly Ray
          idia Jun 26, 2007 06:05 PM

          The Saloon is a Philadelphia institution. (personally, I expect Signor Soprano to come along any second!)

        2. Den Jun 27, 2007 06:52 AM

          The pasta at San Marco in Springhouse is excellent.

          1. p
            pamd Jun 28, 2007 12:54 PM

            this is a great start- but I know there must be more places for us to try!

            7 Replies
            1. re: pamd
              saturninus Jun 29, 2007 05:41 AM

              That's 9 places....

              1. re: saturninus
                pamd Jun 29, 2007 08:21 AM

                I know, but he's running the marathon late fall, so that leaves a lot more than 9 pasta nights!
                Also, was hoping for a few more non city suggestions, but I guess there really isn't that much in the burbs. I'll have to leave those nights for cooking.

                1. re: pamd
                  saturninus Jun 29, 2007 08:23 AM

                  sadly, from the boot and fellini in berwyn are the best pastas i have had in the suburbs.

                  also HEARD good things about modo mio in fishtown. pasta and bread are homemade (not bought fresh but made in restaurant). haven't tried them yet.

                  1. re: saturninus
                    Mawrter Jul 9, 2007 09:15 PM

                    I think San Nicola, like two doors down, is a xillion times better than San Nicola.

                    Also - try Pesto in South Philly (it's in town, I know, sorry!). Fresh homemade pasta, great service, reasonable, BYOB, loved the food. I just went there for the first time and the cavatelli, stuffed pasta, and I-forget-what-else are all handmade on the premises. The chef/owner, John, is from Italy and is a cleanliness zealot (in a good way!), and has just about the most *sincere* restaurant, menu and staff you could possibly find. They also make their own prosciutto, braesola, and bread. And ice cream. Can you tell I liked this place?

                    Ristorante Pesto
                    1915 South Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19148
                    (215) 336-8380

                    1. re: Mawrter
                      pamd Jul 16, 2007 07:28 PM

                      Mawrter- help me out with the typo of your 1st sentence...unless of course the 2 places have the same name:) what is the better place?

                      1. re: pamd
                        Mawrter Jul 17, 2007 09:17 AM

                        Hoooboy. Posting while sleep-deprived and all that - thanks, PAMD.

                        What I meant to say was "I think San Nicola, like two doors down, is a xillion times better than _Fellini's_."

                  2. re: pamd
                    coolgeek Jul 1, 2007 07:35 PM

                    Lombardi's in Horsham


                    BYOB and ridiculously cheap prices

              2. l
                lillotis Jun 29, 2007 06:23 AM

                The Lobster Ravioli and homemade gnocchi at L'Angolo are amazing. Ask to get the gnocchi with bolognese- unbelievable. Also, they run daily homemade ravioli and past specials.

                1. c
                  clairvaux Jun 29, 2007 01:21 PM

                  The gnocchi at the eponymous Gnocchi off of South Street. (5th? 6th?) Not for the low-carb set.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: clairvaux
                    idia Jun 30, 2007 08:44 AM

                    La Famiglia

                    1. re: clairvaux
                      zelbee Jul 17, 2007 10:34 AM

                      We had a wonderful meal at Gnocchi. For a party of 6, they offered to serve us family style and we had enough food for at least a few more people. All of the pastas we had were excellent.

                    2. s
                      sylviag Jun 30, 2007 08:55 AM

                      We just had incredible pastas at Melograno, at 22nd and Spruce. Informal, BYOB, I don't think they take reservations, wonderful food. Not expensive.

                      1. j
                        jessicheese Jun 30, 2007 11:12 AM

                        I love the pasta dishes at Fellini Cafe, in Media. Pesto, on Broad and Mifflin, is another great pasta option.

                        Does it have to be Italian pasta? Banana Leaf, in Chinatown, has some wonderful noodle dishes.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: jessicheese
                          rabidog Jun 30, 2007 11:44 PM

                          i can't dig fellini.

                          modo mio as mentioned is wonderful, but the plates aren't quite of marathon proportions. of course, the prices are cheap enough that you could probably just order 2 plates. the chef there is very friendly.

                          il cantuccio in northern liberties serves up massive tasty pasta dishes.

                          i should really stop reading this board when i am hungry at almost 3 in the morning.

                          1. re: rabidog
                            idia Jul 1, 2007 06:54 AM

                            I second Paradiso loud and clear

                        2. j
                          Jaie Jul 1, 2007 09:04 AM

                          I like the pasta at La Viola and its sister restaurant, located on 16th near Spruce in Philadelphia. They have standards and also have a pasta special daily.

                          I also like DiBruno for takeout or very casual fare. We had a great pasta dish with smoked gouda last week. I can't remember the name but it was definitely sit-down restaurant quality.

                          1. a
                            alia84 Jul 2, 2007 01:35 PM


                            3 Replies
                            1. re: alia84
                              Buckethead Jul 2, 2007 01:39 PM

                              Oh please.

                              1. re: Buckethead
                                pamd Jul 3, 2007 05:52 AM

                                Sorry, I hate Maggiano's. The only decent thing I've had there is a martini. But I do thank you for a suggestion.

                                1. re: pamd
                                  ChiliDude Jul 15, 2007 11:38 AM

                                  I second the motion on Maggiano's! As a guest at a birthday party with 10 tables each of which sat 10 people, family style platters arrived at our table with enough food for only 4 people. When I happened to request an additional bowl of 'gravy', stuff right out of a can, the waiter brought it, looked me in the eye and placed it 180 degrees across the table. I won't go there again, especially having to pay the bill myself for that arrogance.

                            2. AmblerGirl Jul 3, 2007 06:31 AM

                              For great homemade pasta, I love Ristorante Castello in North Wales. Their gnocci is amazing. It is a little price-y but very good.

                              For my fix of old school red gravy, not necessarily homemade pasta but good hearty food, the best by far is Momma D's in Pipersville. Try their spagetti and meatballs. They use fresh (not house made) tagietelle, meatballs the size of a tennis ball, garlick-y tomato sauce. And they also have homemade old school italian wine and this killer olive soup that I dream about (but that is a whole other topic). Prices very reasonable. I think the spagetti and meatballs is only $12.95 for a huge portion (take leftovers home for at least two lunches) and soup/salad.

                              1. s
                                severt0667 Jul 5, 2007 09:59 AM

                                Definatly recommend Lombardi's in Horsham - and then more burb's would be Annabella's in Bristol right off Mill Street. The best pasta in the burbs - great service and prices - it's BYOB

                                1. AmblerGirl Jul 9, 2007 08:12 AM

                                  I just had some AMAZING homemade gnocci at Mercato. I would absolutely recommend it.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: AmblerGirl
                                    EastCoastWineMan Jul 9, 2007 08:18 AM

                                    Vetri (small portion alert) for lobster spagetti or Dante and Luigi's....weird atmosphere, but good....it's right outta good fellas

                                  2. Jay F Jul 15, 2007 11:17 AM

                                    I've always liked the pasta dishes at Porcini, on Sansom in the 20s

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