Good eats during weekend getaway to Philly?
Hello Philly Chowhounds!
I will be visiting Philly for the first time ever at the end of the month (Friday night through Sunday morning) and was hoping to get more suggestions on nummy treats I should try. For reference, I'll be staying at the Hyatt Regency at Penn's Landing and will have access to a car (so I won't mind driving out a bit).
I've read through a good number of posts already and have come up with a tentative itinerary of breakfast at Reading Terminal Market on Saturday morning and dinner at Morimoto's later in the evening. (I'm not the biggest fan of Japanese cuisine, but my gf is a major Iron Chef nut.)
That leaves me with Friday late dinner (probably won't get in until 8 or 9 p.m.), Saturday lunch and Sunday breakfast to plan -- and any snacks/treats along the way.
Thanks a bunch!!!
I'd head back to Reading Terminal Market on Saturday for a roast pork sandwich at DiNic's myself.
For nights you aren't in the mood to travel much there is a lot not terribly far from you in the Old City/Northern Liberties/South Street area. Of those I would reccomend:
Amada - upscale spanish tapas
Eulogy - 300 beers, focus on belgian
Chloe - romantic BYOB, no reservations
Honey's - jewish/southern cuisine, great breakfast
Standard Tap - a must for visitors, great selection of only local beers, pub food
Ansill - exotic small plates
Beau Monde - delicious crepes
Reading Terminal is great for lunch, but on the whole I would skip it for breakfast/brunch. Go to Morning Glory or Sabrina's for breakfast. Warning: get there early or expect to wait. I also agree with the Honey's suggestion for breakfast. I can take or leave Ansill. Chloe is one of my favorite restaurants, and it will be an interesting foil to your Morimoto experience--both financially and "culinarily".
try a late table at Osteria. A very good spot. Tough reservation, but usually available later in the evening.
what are you guys ordering at honey's that you like?? i keep trying to find some good in that place, and each visit leaves me scratching my head at the constant weekend brunch lines.
so these would be my picks for your meals:
friday late dinner - at the standard tap in northern liberties you can get good eats and local beers as mentioned. this neighborhood has a ton of late-night places... you could also try bar ferdinand for spanish tapas and sangria, the abbaye for good beers and pub food, more pub food at north third, or, if you're up for it after your travels, go to north bowl (a couple doors up from the standard tap) and go bowling and have some awesome snacks at your lane! they have good comfort snack food, like tater tots (yes, tater tots), nachos, and pretty yummy hummus & pitas. or if you can't pick just one, just bar-hop around the neighborhood (many kitchens are open til 1am here) getting small morsels along your way!
saturday lunch - i totally agree with saturninus that you should go to eulogy in old city! it is THE perfect lunch spot in an area seemingly void of lunch places (old city and northern liberties really come alive at night!). sit upstairs, where you can relax and listen to what's on the jukebox (seemingly always nirvana?). i really like their fish n chips, and i LOVE most beers i've had there. i just wish i could remember the names of them for later. you can walk here from the hyatt, and then burn off lunch by walking around old city / shopping / seeing art galleries and historic sites.
another lunch idea is chinatown - just walk around, have a bubble tea, and menu-shop til you see something that grabs you. i could rattle off places i've been to recently, but i've been to probably 25 places in chinatown, and only 2 of them i would not return to. your odds are pretty spectacular, i think!
sunday breakfast - i don't know what your hours are, but my weekend hours are late... if you can hold off, north third in northern liberties opens for brunch at 11am and if you get there between 11 - 11:45 you can beat the lines, and if the weather's nice, grab a table outside. they are my favorite brunch in town (though i have not been to morning glory or sabrina's yet).
the hyatt is a great place to stay because old city is a very walkable area and has a bunch of historical sites, a great art scene, and a ton of bars... and you are also near the market-frankford el (subway) at 2nd and market. i would leave your car parked at the hotel (parking in multiple places in philly can cost more than dinner!!!) and rely on foot, el, and taxis. all the places i suggested are within a 25-min walk of your hotel, or 1 stop north on the el (to spring garden station for northern liberties recs) or a $6 cab ride. have fun!
p.s. re: snacks / treats along the way... they may be a bit out of your way, but two places must be mentioned:
tria at 18th and sansom for wine, beer, cheese, snacky plates (and a new location on the east side of town, closer to you, maybe someone can help with that address?)
capogiro - one location at 13th and sansom, other ?20th? and sansom for AMAzing gelato - worth the trip, even in the cold months!!
I have to mention an experience I had at Chick's. I went with friends to check out this wine bar/ restaurant. Food was good, not great. The cheese selection was just OK. What bothered me is when I was chosing a wine I went with the Sauvignon Blanc. When the server brought it over and I tasted it, he asked me what I thought. I said it was good. He laughed and said that the bartender and him have a joke, they think the wine tastes like kitty litter. I was so disgusted that he served it to me, had me tasted and said that. He also didn't at that point decide to get me something else. I felt stupid for ordering it and saying it tasted good.
Positano Coast has great wine and gnocchi and shortribs to die for, it's within walking distance of your hotel too.
note from a former Starr employee (Starr owes Morimoto and some other themed restaurants that you should avoid on your visit)--stick with the sushi at Morimoto. The other items on their menu are overpriced and not so great.