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Jul 17, 2007 11:22 AM

Al fresco fine dining near art museum area

Hello. My husband, son (11 yrs.) and I are going to visit the King Tut exhibit this weekend.
We will be staying on Ben Fkln Pkwy and are looking for a nice restaurant for Friday night.
We'll have a car, but I was looking for a "walk-to" place in the area that is good. I've looked at the websites for Waterworks, Rembrandt's and Twentyone. Any feedback on any of those?
Or, are there others that are better? BTW, my son is well behaved and will eat different types of food.


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  1. All are good.
    Add Rae's near 30th Street

    1. Call for a reservation to sit outdoors at Waterworks. Those seats are in high demand. It's pleasant indoors too, but outside overlooking the river is the most popular.

      For a very casual place - BYOB - with good food and reasonable prices, walk to L'Oca, at 2025 Fairmount. Very child friendly.

      Rembrandt's is always nice; has a varied menu. It's a little farther.

      3 Replies
      1. re: sylviag

        I am not crazy about any restaurants in the Art Museum area and prefer going to Center City West. I found L'Oca to be overpriced, the portions were too small and the "fresh" pasta wasn't fresh.

        1. re: saturninus

          Wow, what a different experience you had! We thought the pasta was delicious, especially the pappardelle ragu, and not overpriced. I couldn't finish my portion of ravioli.
          We will be returning, since we live in the neighborhood, and hope it will be as good. We didn't try any of the fish or meat entrees yet. I'll report after our next visit.
          We actually are also not crazy about any of the restaurants around here, and usually go elsewhere. We do know many people who love Figs; we haven't been there in a while. And London - forget it!

          1. re: sylviag

            I agree about the other restaurants in the area. That's funny about our two experiences, but that happens all the time. I have only been their once.

      2. I first ate at Water Works just after they opened (and about three chefs ago) and thought that it had a lot of potential. However, my last (as in most recent and final) visit in May showed that the potential has not been fulfilled. Among the amateur goofs: (1) they forgot to put the dressing on my Caesar salad; (2) they forgot to take the scales off of my fish entree; and, (3) they forgot to offer us coffee. Add to that the fact that all of the dishes were cold and that the general manager, Ed Doherty (who I think recently left) spent the entire night gabbing with some friends at one table. Except for the wonderful view on a beautiful night, the meal was a total disaster. What a shame that they can't seem to do anything with the food.

        If, despite my warning, you decide to go, I don't think you can make a reservation for the outside. Since they don't seat on the deck in bad weather and they never know when the weather might be bad, I'm pretty sure that it's on a first come basis.

        With regard to Rae, while I like the place very much, they don't meet your criteria of al fresco dining. It's actually located in the lobby of the Cira Center.