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I love what's happened to Phoenixville over the last few years (except the parking situation). At first, I was only aware of the Colonial Theatre, someone told be about Black Lab (I still haven't gone). Then it was Majolica (one of my absolute favorites in the area) and Cheese! Now the Creperie...

I've only seen passing references to Phoenixville on Pennsylvania Chowhounds, when people are asking about Montco, or "near King of Prussia". I would like to start a discussion of Phoenixville specifically.

Has anyone been to the Creperie? Please tell us about it.

Majolica is obvious (to me, anyway) and probably deserves its own discussion board.

Black Lab Bistro. I hear it's nice, but simpler food. What are people's strategies for going there and maximizing the value of the place. Same question for Columbia B&G (I hear that one less often). Iron Hill is not a personal favorite for food anyway (I know the one in West Chester), but I may be wrong. What about the steak house by the old train station? I drive by it, and can't even tell if it's really still open.

I live only 15 min away, but only get there regularly for the Colonial (as close to weekly as I can manage), Cheese!, the Texas BBQ stand when it's there, and for Majolica (once every 3-4 months). I would love to hear more from locals and CH who get there more often.

And does anyone have a workable parking strategy?



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  1. What Texas BBQ place- where exactly? Iron Hill is a good place to take kids IMO- nice what they've done to the kids menu & can enjoy a good beer. I used to enjoy Black Lab but not as much anymore, I'd go for lunch over dinner. They seemed to care more about weekend quality I noticed. The owner was actually not accommodating & quite rude regarding kids friendly food anymore. They do have good desserts. I've mentioned before, love Los Mariachis. Have had good experiences at Twin Bays as well. What is where Turnaround Cafe was? Molly Maguires was a nice addition, Irish is always a fun scene. I wish some good stuff would come to the Acme center.

    12 Replies
    1. re: pamd

      gacamole, thanks for your advice. Could you expand on the Creperie and the Steak House please. As to parking, some evenings this last fall there have been no spaces at the municipal lot. Around dinner / movie time. I attribute that to the larger number of restaurants on Bridge St.

      Pamd, the Texas BBQ is actually a trailer that parks in the Barto's Pool and Spa lot for a weekend a month (that may not include some winter months). It's usually there Fri / Sat / Sun from lunch until she runs out of food. It's worth checking out. Here's the website with a calendar of where they'll be.



      1. re: pamd

        Just saw the Texas BBQ in Royersford today...
        I totally agree with everyting you wrote, Pamd. While Iron Hill isn't gourmet by any stretch we do get decent food there. I find it a bit overpriced, though, and generally like the menu at Epicurean a bit better (where they also have very affordable kids meals that come with a sundae).
        Black Lab always gets such applause on these boards and I have to admit that we haven't been there in ages. The last time we were there was after they switched menus and decor. We were quite underimpressed that night and have never cared to try it again. And like you said, they aren't family friendly any longer which definitely cramps our style;)
        We also LOVE Mariachis. Best tacqueria outside of Norristown for sure!
        We haven't tried Molly Maguires yet primarily because we had heard that service was horrible. Did you find that to be the case??

        1. re: isadorasmama

          We ate there recently. Our service was fine. We overheard the diners next to us had their order given to another table by mistake and had to be re-ordered for them. Looked like the manager came over and apologized. I wasn't nosy enough to get all the dirt though. Burger, breakfast, bangers and mash, boxty with chicken, tomato, cheese were all fine, not knock our socks off great but fine. However, the Irish pub decor is very nice and cozy, outdoor seating on a patio and upper porch. I'd say a very pleasant place to enjoy a beer and a bite.

          1. re: RC51Mike

            i'll ditto the negatve remarks on molly's although i've only been there once the food wasn't good and my wife who's been there three times has yet to have good service. Maybe we'll give it one more shot. You can't leave out Nudy's though, they have some of the best food and friendliest staff of any breakfast place i've been too. I'll put my vote in for Epicurean too, one of the best menu's i've seen along with a great beer selection and good friendly atmosphere.

            1. re: rigs21k

              We only went to Molly's once & actally had great service. However, we did have young ones with us (babies seem to attract staff). One of the waitresses there left Nudy's to work at Mollys. The food was nothing great but we really enjoy the armosphere. They also have changing specials & live music.
              I've had some good meals & some really bad meals at Epicurean (they don't do well with larger groups IMO), so I find it's hit or miss.

              Also, (I've mentioned before on here) further up Thai L'Elephant is great. Joeys makes a nice cheesesteak (near rita's)

              Interesting is how many pizza places there are in Phoenixville- and so different! Any thoughts?

              1. re: pamd

                I found Thai L'Elephant to be mediocre. I much prefer Thai Spice in Limerick to be significantly better.

                The one good thing about Mollys is that it is smokefree.

                1. re: mitchh

                  Sorry, I have to disagree. Thai L'Elephant is far superior and much closer to the food I had in Thailand. You do have to encourage them to turn up the spice level if you like it hot.

                  Unfortunately my experience at the Creperie, a few weeks after their opening was quite disappointing. Not only did it take close to 1.5 hrs for breakfast, they messed up orders, and the tarte tatin was a soggy mess. Will give them some time to work out the kinks before I return.

                  1. re: percyn

                    Thai Place in the shopping center with the Giant on Nutt Rd is far superior to Thai L'Elephant. We've eaten at Thai L'Elephant a handful of times, only because it was Monday & Thai Place was closed & we were jonesin' for some Thai. We were always disappointed.
                    I'm embarrassed to admit that we eat at Thai Place once a week. The Gang Garee curry is to die for. I promise you won't be disappointed.

                    1. re: Metasequoia

                      Actually, I have had the opposite experience between Thai L'Elephant and Thai Place (i.e. prefer Thai L'Elephant), but am willing to give it another shot.

                      Have you tried Thai L'Elephant on a day other than Monday (usually a day when Chefs are off)? I encourage you to try it on a Fri or Sat.


              2. re: rigs21k

                Ditto on Molly's. HORRIBLE food!

                1. re: rigs21k

                  Oh my - how fantastic is Nudy's!!!! Just don't eat for two days. Here's a secret... The Polish American club has an open breakfast ever sunday... They make great bloody marys. Now the food is regular breakfast fare but if you ask for a special omlette they will make it for you. The menu is only 5-6 items but they give you alot for little $. To get there - go over the bridge to the red light hang a left and up about a block or so on your left you'll see a nondescript red brick bldg. with a parking lot to its side...

                2. re: RC51Mike

                  Iwas just there tonight. Food was good and the sevice was good. I should rephrase that the food was exeptional and the sevice was grand. The live music (happend every first sunday of the month) was just an added bonus. I'm a bit of a musician in my free time and the group was one of the best I've heard. The leader did her rounds during one of the breaks and gave me her card. www.kaneandbeatty.com is her website. Anyway, good food, good drink, great atmasphere, and a smashing good band. Oh I've been to Ireland before and this was just like.

            2. I definitely looked forward to going to the Creperie, but have to say I was disappointed. The food was acceptable but it was WAY overpriced for what was served. It's basically just a pancake and some sauteed meats and vegetables for crying out loud. The beverage selection was slim and also overpriced.

              With respect to the parking situation. I love Phoenixville because, unlike, for example, Manayunk and West Chester, there is generally parking right near the target destination. This is going to change shortly, however, I imagine . . . .

              2 Replies
              1. re: CChaz

                I'm glad to have found this thread. Friends of ours were discussing Majolica just this evening and we are planning to try it in March (if not before).

                1. re: idia

                  Well, we went to the Creperie again. Someone HAS to tell them that their service is WAY too slow. The crepes are quite good actually, but we became aggravated by the wait. No WONDER there are always tables available on the weekends when their competition always has a line to get in.

              2. Francis
                Thanks for the thread. I think Phoenixville has definitely upgraded its image in the past few years and there are lots of dining options now. I am not familiar with Epicurean or Los Mariachis-any address for them? A post on Phoenixville would not be complete without
                mentioning the wonderful Farmers Market held in the lot behind the Dollar Store on Saturdays. They even have winter hours every other Saturday from 10-11 AM-the next is January 12th. Once you get on their email list you can place advance orders with the vendors, which include bison, pork, pastries, vegetables, chicken, cheese and lamb, all produced locally and sustainably.

                3 Replies
                1. re: barbjack

                  Epicurian is in the Village at Eland on Rte. 113.

                  Los Mariachis is at 201 Gay St. Does not look like much from the outside, but you have seen how many here have raved about it.

                  Thanks for letting us know about the winter hours. I had just assumed the market closed down from November to May like most others.


                  1. re: FrancisdeR

                    Maybe I'm crazy. Maybe I'm too picky. Maybe I'm just a jerk....but I've been to the Epicurian three times over about five years......and have been horribly disappointed each time. I keep hearing how great it is. The owners also run the American Bar and Grill locations....those places have always left me happy, but the Ep always manages to give me the right combination of bad food and bad service.
                    Oh well, just my two cents.

                    1. re: Major504

                      Unfortunately, the owner seems to spend most of his time at the American Bar and Grill. His original spot, which used to be the PREMIER spot around Phoenixville, is no longer his focus. It's still good! But not as great as it once was. I miss (but my arteries don't) the Locatelli sauce that was so think you could feel your arteries hardening. Oh, it's still on the menu, but it's not quite the same.

                2. I've had good service at Molly's but only average food, I think it's more of a place to enjoy the beer than food. The Thai Place by Giant is surprisingly good for being located in a strip mall. Majolica is delicious. I enjoy brunch at the Columbia Hotel, especially the Columbia Benedict. The Epicurean makes a fantastic grilled cheese, if that's your thing. I've been to the Creperie once, the kitchen must be understaffed or unexperienced, because it took about 30-35 minutes for our crepes to come out. I love Cheese!, can't stop spending money on brie and the horseradish parsely cheddar. I still can't find decent pizza though...

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: pedroski

                    Hello fellow Phoenix - Villans So where is the best pizza? I've been tasting for three years, still can't find it. The best I found is pizza express, but I can't rave about that either. I notice that Likki has not been mentioned. My husband and I love the sushi there, expecially their special rolls. They are a great size, and very tasty. I think the Black Lab is overpriced, I liked it much more when they had resonably priced meals and a great variety. Now, we go for appetizers and dessert. The Birchrunville Store Cafe is by far our favorite and in our opinion worth the 2+ month wait for a Saturday night. There's a new spot called the Station Bistro (BYO) in Kimberton. The ribs are fantastic, but the service is horrible. We go to the Epicurean for drinks and to hear a great local band. Where does everyone go for great chineese?

                    1. re: cybil

                      Without question, the best Chinese in the area is at one of Margaret Kuo's places. Margaret Kuo's Mandarin listed as "Malvern" is the closest to Phoenixville, though her Wayne address is also nearby. For both of them, if you learn the back roads, they're not as far as if you only know the state routes. One note: Margaret Kuo's places use MSG unless you specifically ask them NOT to. Trust me, though. Try Margaret Kuo's Mandarin if you live in Phoenixville and you happen to be near Frazer / Great Valley (which is where they really are vs. Malvern, which is where they aren't).

                      1. re: cybil

                        Best Pizza by far is Liberty Pizza - 'tho I hear good things about Valley Forge Pizza as well.

                    2. Thought I would just update this thread to say that the Vale Rio diner closed on Sunday after almost 60 years of business. To be replaced by (ugh) a Walgreens.

                      1. There was a good article about the state of dining in Phoenixville, concentrating on Bridge Street, in today's Inquirer, with a list of the restaurants at the end:


                        1 Reply
                        1. re: modbetty

                          cybil, try Han Dynasty in Exton (McDonald shopping center) for great authentic Chinese. We used to go down to Berwyn to Wabi Sabi also.

                          Another great place for fish dinners (cheap too) is Kim's Seafood (in Eland center). Creperie is ok for something different. Birchrunville Cafe (right down the street from me) is very good but we left there hungry and for the prices, that should never happen. Majolica is very good but we had a bad service experience on our first visit and haven't been back.

                        2. I'm loving the changes to the area too, I was a bit disappointed when we moved here a few years ago from the city, but now my only problem is that I never want to go to the city anymore. The options along bridge st are great, and I usually just head out a bit early and park in the municipal lot at the beginning of Bridge St. It's not usually full and the stroll is nice.
                          On a separate topic, does anyone know what is going in across the street from the parking lot? Someone mentioned to my wife that it was another restaurant, but it has been undergoing renovations since I can remember and is still empty.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: winemedineme

                            Not sure....but I think the building is gonna be a Baxter's. Just a rumor I heard from a somewhat unreliable source.

                            1. re: Major504

                              It states that in the Inquirer article (it was posted above)- I guess that is a bit more reliable.

                              I've never been to a Baxters- is it any good?

                              1. re: pamd

                                PAMD - No. Think independently-owned Houlihan's.

                                1. re: pamd

                                  Baxters is a bar/resturant in Great Valley - he opened the resturant on Bridge and it did not do well - too pricey and regular Baxter's food

                                  1. re: xpopeye

                                    The original one is still going strong in Paoli, still doing a great bar crowd and still popular among people who apparently hate food.

                            2. My family and I are thinking of trying the Phoenixville area for a fun dinner out on Saturday night. We are six adults (age ranging from 32 to a young 60) and we would like a cocktail or two with our dinner. Which restaurant would you suggest besides Molly Maguires (it will be packed for St Pattys)?

                              5 Replies
                              1. re: murano

                                I think you should go to Twin Bays (BYO) based on your party. I's not in downtown Phoenixville though (where Molly's is). It is a lovely setting, nice staff, & good food. They also take reservations. If you enjoy Thai, Thai L'Elephant off 23 is another good option.

                                Personally, I have been repeatedly disappointed at Epicurean with anything other than salad and would not return again, and have found some staff to be rude. Not to mention, we were there with 4 adults, ordered 4 meals, but 2 people decided to share their 2 meals. The waitress heard that when ordering, so she took it upon herself to have the kitchen split the 2 meals on 4 plates, then charged for sharing- and refused to take it off the bill!

                                1. re: pamd

                                  Take out a second mortgage if you go to Twin Bays. While it's good, it's is extremely overpriced. $9 for a bowl of soup and there is not a single entree under $21. That's going to be a pricy tab for a party fo 6.

                                  1. re: mitchh

                                    Twin Bays is now Becca's.
                                    Focus on seasonal and organic. Chef is Robert Bahm from Taquet and Bryce’s Catering.
                                    Prices are out of control expensive. $24 for a pan seared chicken breast is insane, in this economy or any other.

                                    1. re: isadorasmama

                                      looked at the brunch menu- $20 seems a bit high to get much business in this area for a breakfast entree. $5 for a bagel & cream cheese on the side, really??!

                                      1. re: isadorasmama

                                        For anyone who'd like to try Becca's and have it priced a bit more reasonably, there are usually $25 certificates available for $2 on Restaurant.com. I've been to Becca's twice and enjoyed it both times. But I'll agree that they're a bit overpriced.

                                2. Molly Maguires may be packed for St Pats Day, I'm sure it will be loud. The Epicurean has a nice menu and crowd on Saturday nights. I think they have live music every Friday and Saturday night.

                                  Back to the question about the best pizza in town, personally I think it's Villa Pizza. It's next to the Bowling Alley on Rt 23. Very fresh and consistent. If you like Greek style pizza, you may want to try Liberty Square.

                                  Has anyone tried the new mexican restaurant in the La Taverna building? It looks like it just opened...

                                  5 Replies
                                  1. re: obx_nancy

                                    Also wondering about Crazy Cactus in the Bull Tavern. I'm a Colorado native, and am constantly on the lookout for "New Mexico-style" Mexican food. Green chile, real tamales, etc. So far, I haven't found anything that comes close. Does anyone know of such a place anywhere in the Delaware Valley? Green chile (pork stew) is a must!

                                    1. re: jooleepadoolie

                                      Hey - we are from Colorado too and miss the heck out of Mexican food. We have to make our own green chile, carne adovada, guac, etc... If you try the Crazy Cactus, please post your opinion. Nothing more disappointing than bad Mexican food! We tried Los Mariachis - it was so-so but could be alright I guess if you know what to order (hard for small kids to really appreciate). The Mesa Grill is also alright but I think its more of a chain than we like.

                                      1. re: JenBecker

                                        Go to Los Mariachis on Gay St. in Phoenixville or Taqueria La Michoacana in Norristown (301 E Main St, Norristown - (610) 292-1971). I'm also from Colorado and this is the best that I've found without having to drive down to the Kennett Square area.

                                        1. re: Fitzy31

                                          Taqueria La Michoacana used to be the best in the area; then Main Line Magazine gave them rave reviews. Then they renovated and redid the menus. They're still good, but you no longer see them filled mostly with local Mexican Americans. At this point, I'd recommend Los Mariachies in Phoenixville. They're BYOB too. Note: food-wise, they're more El Salvadorian than Mexican, but that's a bonus. Anyway, tell me where else around here you can get a Tongue Taco.

                                      2. re: jooleepadoolie

                                        There is an authentic Mexican place in Norristown which might have it..the name escapes me right now...search the thread.

                                    2. A great Mexican Place but not in P-Ville is Los Aztecas in Pottstown. It's on Rt 100 in the Wal Mart shopping center. It's BYOB and the prices and food are great! I love the Carne Asada!

                                      1. First, don't bother going to Molly Maguires - the food is mediocre at best and the entire staff needs to be retrained. When I complained to one of the owners (Declan?) about the poor service he actually said that "there are other places in town that you can go to," I just about lost it. He was drunk when he responded...although he's always drunk.
                                        Iron Hill has good food, but their beer is pedestrian.
                                        Sly Fox has spectacular beer but so-so food.
                                        Majolica is THE best spot in town, but you'll pay for it.
                                        Black Lab has improved greatly over the years.
                                        Columbia Bar & Grill is quite good, but nothing eye-opening.
                                        Creperie is worth trying but their hours are in need of adjustment.
                                        Tex's BBQ is spectacular.
                                        Los Mariachis on Gay St. is delicious. Get it to go if you feel "eyes" on you...you'll know what I mean.
                                        The Bookend Cafe on Rt. 23 near Whitehorse Rd. (sandwiches, soup, coffee, etc.) is very, very, very good.
                                        Twin Bays is very good and very expensive.
                                        Kimberton Inn is affordable and always worth a visit...try to get the Cellar Room!
                                        Yellow Springs Inn is old-school good. Somewhat pricey & romantic.
                                        Soon, we'll also be getting Baxter's Restaurant in the old Superintendant's Building (across street from Iron Hill) and a Ryan's Pub (from West Chester).

                                        When in "Downtown Phoenixville," park in The Foundry lot (across from Molly's) or in the lot down past The Dollar Store on Bridge St. where the Farmer's Mkt. is held (this is where the future parking garage is supposed to be built).

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: Fitzy31

                                          BTW, the guy that opened Bookend Cafe (replaced the other cafe) is really nice too, which I like. I hope he gets more business & stays open. A great place to relax or chat with a friend for a quiet breakfast or lunch.

                                          non food- but a cute little store just opened near Black Lab- something Cat in the name- nice handmade items & jewelry.

                                          Also, I was recently told (by a restaurant owner) that with all the new restaurants, they have a meeting soon to discuss having meters put up along Bridge hoping it will help their business.

                                          1. re: Fitzy31

                                            I hear that The Inn at Yellow Springs is no longer open, and hasn't been for a while. Loved their bar!

                                            1. re: Fitzy31

                                              Check out the new Pickering Creek Inn where the Mansion House used to be. Great beer selections. I tried it Satureday nite and was very pleasantly surprised. Great beer selection (ask for the beer menu), terrific food, good service, and very good prices. This is a place to watch.

                                            2. I've lived in Phoenixville for about three years now....and like most, I like the efforts made to help enhance the town's dining scene. I am, however, disappointed with the quality of some of the newer places. In some ways it almost feels like the town was desperate...and we got what the desperate get. This is not say that there aren't great places around....I love some of the choices around here...but to hear my people say things like "wow...Phoenixville is hoppin' now...you guys got an Iron Hill!"...Yipee. Actually, I like Iron Hill....but it doesn't exactly get my chowhound goin'. Molly Maguires??? I spent some time working with Kildares....This place feels like a ripoff....and I wouldn't even want a Kildares in this town. Now we get to look forward to a Baxters?!?!? How disappointing. This place has an excitement level of -2. Here, we'll be able to enjoy mediocre food and above average prices, and yet another place to get our happy hour on. And then the cherry on top...Ryan's Pub. Great...yet another bar. People say "yeah...like the one in West Chester" Great...So now I can fight with the college crowd to get my Miller Lite draft. This place is not to be confused with a restaurant.

                                              Now....don't get me wrong, I work in the restaurant biz, and am not too far removed from my binge drinking days, so I can appreciate another good bar....but seriously...we're saying that the Phoenixville dining scene is moving forward...but to what? Some have even compared it's growth to that of Manayunk. Well..to me....barring the whole bar scene in Manayunk, there are actually a lot of good, independent restaurants there. Call me when Phoenixville gets a place like Jake's. You know what I want...a wine list. A good wine list. This town doesn't have one. Yes...I know all about how being a BYOB is so great for my wallet, and how it helps a startup restaurant, and gee-whiz isn't it just so cool!! Sometimes I want a cocktail...then a glass of wine. Maybe even an after dinner drink. I say this because I believe that Majolica and the Black Lab are pretty much the only real dining experiences in town. They are the only places I those drinks would go with the meals they serve.

                                              Majolica: Yes...the prices are a bit high. Yes...the menu/time allotment on the weekends/substitution issues are all topics of discussion. However, to me...this is the only real creative, unique, adventurous restaurant in town. It's the anchor. It the only real serious dining experience in Phoenixville.

                                              Black Lab Bistro: I love this place. No, it's not cheap, but I've never felt that I didn't get what I paid for. I like the atmosphere, and the service has always been good. The outdoor tables (weather permitting) are also great for my dog. I find the menu creative without pretense, and it's execution admirable.
                                              Columbia Bar&Grill: old school...good food...good for family gatherings, nothing here will offend anyone.
                                              Twin Bays: Don't understand this place...mediocre food....high prices (for their food) Funky hours.
                                              Los mariachis: eat there...it's good.
                                              Sly Fox: totally agree with Fitzy...great beer, crappy food.
                                              Iron Hill: I only go for the pizzas and beer...which are both fairly good.
                                              Epicurian: Skip it....mediocre food, atrocious service.

                                              4 Replies
                                              1. re: Major504

                                                I can't argue with anything you're saying only try to be patient and look at the long view. I assume a lot of folks are thrilled that things are happening in Phoenixville because for so long nothing was. I do not live in the area at present but I was born there, grew up near there, shopped there with my parents as a child. My father, uncle and cousin worked at Phoenix Steel. So, I've seen the town go from a successful working town to its worst. While a few somewhat mediocre enterprises may be there or may be coming, as it gains a new and improved reputation things will shake out and Phoenixville will see more of the business that can serve that market. That may mean more chains and bars or it may mean more better restaurants and shops. I can live with a so-so Molly Maguires for a while longer or a Baxters knowing that Phoenixville may have turned an important corner. ...Speaking not so much as a foodie but pleasantly surprised urban planner.

                                                1. re: RC51Mike

                                                  The plans for the new library were released & it looks like they are putting a cafe with outdoor seating at it- sounds like a great idea, just not sure what it will include. Anyone know more details?

                                                  Also, know anything about Tyler James? They are expanding & changing it I heard.

                                                  1. re: pamd

                                                    RC51Mike......I agree...I just wanted to vent. I do believe that the progress will prove worthwhile (in the chowhound sense). It is great to see what the town has done recently.

                                                    I feel better now.

                                                    1. re: Major504

                                                      Hey All -- Wanted to join the fun. I love P-Ville. I think we have a great town and the possibilities are endless. Planning a bar crawl in the next couple of weeks. My favorite food place of the week is the Philly Pretzle Factory. They made pretzles in the shape of dog bones for my son's first birthday (Puppy Party theme). And, I am looking forward to the Dogwood Parade ... so, it isn't the Macy's Day parade,but good entertainment.

                                              2. Does anyone know about the new Catus Cafe on route 23? Anyone tried it yet?

                                                13 Replies
                                                1. re: esm5678

                                                  We are Texas folks and are anxiously awaiting the opening of Cactus Cafe..However, we have heard that it is owned and operated by La Taverna, same kitchen etc so we are not expecting much but....hopefully will be pleasantly surprised. We like Molly's as it gives us an option to walk to and have a drink without having to find parking. Food is okay, but pricey. Haven't been to Los Mariachis(didn't know it had a name) as it never quite looks open, but after reviews, will try it. It's walking distance also and that gives it a thumbs up so far! The Black Lab has undergone changes over the past few years that have been confusing, it started with okay food, non-atmosphere. Now the prices have gone up and the atmosphere is better, but the food quality hasn't kept up...May try once more this spring. Some small cafes would be a welcome addition.

                                                  1. re: trish41

                                                    I would love it if a good sushi place opened in Phoenixville as I have been very disappointed with my recent experiences at Bon Jung.

                                                    1. re: mitchh

                                                      Really- I haven't been to BonJung in a really long time but did enjoy it then. Have you had a chance to try Liki in Phoenixville? I have only tried the hibachi, but there were a ton of people eating sushi & it looked very good.

                                                      1. re: pamd


                                                        Thanks for the rec on Liki. I haven't tried it and may give it a shot. My dinner at Bon Jung on Friday really has me turned off to sushi and it may be a while until I go anywhere (and, when I do, the first place I will go is Misso downtown).

                                                        1. re: mitchh

                                                          Please report back if you try the sushi there. Also incase you missed my general posting & can make it to the city then....check this out

                                                          1. re: pamd


                                                            Thanks for the post, but if I am venturing downtown I'm headed right for Misso.

                                                          2. re: mitchh

                                                            Liki's sushi is pretty good....try the oyster roll.

                                                            1. re: Major504

                                                              Major, with all due respect, when I go out for sushi "pretty good" isn't acceptable to me. In general if I am spending $100 for a night out I'm not looking for something to be "pretty good".

                                                              1. re: mitchh

                                                                Wow....kinda snippy, huh?

                                                                If "pretty good" is not acceptable....don't go. Perhaps I should have elaborated:

                                                                Service: B
                                                                Decor: C (very plain...but nothing especially obtrusive)
                                                                Food: B (non-Sushi)...Teriyaki dishes are good, as are the soups
                                                                Sushi: B...Fresh fish, good quality, rolled well. Rice is good, yet could stand a bit more mirin. perfectly fine nori. They have specific sushi chefs (good sign). Prices are acceptable. Selection is fine. The oyster roll is a favorite of mine (crispy-fried oyster, maybe not traditional...but still yummy....comes with a sweet/spicy sauce and an outer layer of avocado.) Excellent knife skills.
                                                                Bathrooms: A... Stocked, clean and tidy
                                                                Take out: A... food has always arrived at correct temperatures, and in a timely fashion.

                                                                A question was asked...and I gave my best answer. I don't recall saying..."It's pretty good....so you should go there now"

                                                                $100 night out?? This from the one who felt Twin Bays required a a "second mortgage".

                                                                1. re: Major504

                                                                  I will preface this by saying that I don't have any problem spending $100 on dinner and your snippy "second mortgage" reply has nothing to do with how much money I am willing to spend at a restaurant.

                                                                  With that in mind, I am more than happy to spend $100+ for excellent food/service. That said for the prices that Twin Bays is charging I don't feel that the end result is even close to excellent.

                                                                  As for Liki and your sushi recommendation, your exact words were "Liki's sushi is pretty good", which IMO, is hardly a glowing recommendation.

                                                                  With this in mind, I appreciate your "detailed" review and I am sorry if you took my post personally.

                                                        2. re: mitchh

                                                          I love sushi so I am a sucker for trying different sushi restaurants. Of the sushi restaurants in the immediate area, my favorite is Liki. The sushi is quite fresh. The Love Scallop is delicious (when they have scallops), as is the Pepper Tuna (both appetizers are my two favorites). I agree with you about Bon Jung. I ate there when it first opened and wasn't too impressed. I went there several months ago and was quite disappointed. I don't plan on going back to Bon Jung.

                                                          1. re: mitchh

                                                            Try Vicko's (sp?) in Royersford

                                                        3. re: esm5678

                                                          We did finally make it in. We had a wonderful experience. It has unique flavors, someone has gone to a lot of trouble to create some very wonderful sauces, etc... It is much more authentic than most mexican restaurants. I know that they have some kinks to work out. They have not even officially had their "grand opening" yet. I loved everything I tried. I look forward to going back and trying more things.

                                                        4. Speaking from personal Phoenixville experience -I too love what has been happening in my "just down the road" community for eateries --- dining at several of the "newer" Phoenixville hot spots - I am not so impressed!!! The food at Iron Hill the 2 times I've been = has been is overpriced and prefabbed. As for the Creperie - I tried once - way too over priced for what you get. The one time I experienced Majolica I thought the food is way over rated and way over priced but I would be willing to give it another try. I have been to the Black Lab Bistro - when it used to be the "less formal", but now that it is more upscale BYOB - we go every couple of months. Not overpriced for what you get. I am very impressed by the food - creative menus and food is very nicely presented. Although at first I was surprised by the wait time - the convenience of a state store a block away - the dining experience is well worth it. I recommended the Black Lab to other dining friends - they loved it - so will you!!!

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: Tory1963

                                                            You'll have to go some to find a dining experience as fulfilling and delicious as Majolica.
                                                            What a charming little town Phoenixville is.
                                                            Very highly recommended.

                                                          2. Has anybody tried the Spiedie Bistro that just opened? Coming from upstate NY and the home of spiedies, I'm hoping for great things....

                                                            5 Replies
                                                            1. re: trish41

                                                              I was there last week and left disappointed by the time it took to serve a salad and sandwich (over 20 min) and the prices for relatively small portions.

                                                              1. re: percyn

                                                                I went there and it took forever to get served as well. Plus, their location down the "alley" and not right on Bridge probably didn't serve them too well. Too bad; I know about Spiedies (the food type) from a friend who is from Binghamton NY (from whence Spiedies originate) and enjoyed having them here in Phoenixville. RIP.

                                                              2. re: trish41

                                                                I think Spiede is spectacular. I can understand if Percyn didn't like it as they had just opened and were getting out the kinks. Try anything with the pork and you'll be happy. They also added a bunch of bison burgers that are delicious. Go over and try 'em out!

                                                                1. re: Fitzy31

                                                                  I went to Spiedie's and it took us forever to get served. It was embarrassing because I recommended it but apparently our party (~10 people) was too big for them. The guy even whined that I should've called ahead next time. Dude, don't you even want our business? That was confusing.

                                                                  1. re: petey_boy

                                                                    10 person party: Call ahead.


                                                              3. I've been meaning to post this but wanted to wait until I had a card.

                                                                My family lives in Phoenixville and we have fallen in love with a restaurant just a few minutes away.

                                                                New Asian Bistro is in Limerick, and has the kindest staff, most reasonably priced menu and very good Chinese Fare. They definitely pander to an un-saavy crowd, as they now serve a lot of inauthentic dishes, but everything is very fresh and delicious.

                                                                I have now been about 6 times and have been very happy each time. They are more than happy to accomidate specific needs.

                                                                New Asian Bistro
                                                                70 Buckwalter Road
                                                                Limerick PA 19468

                                                                1. Has the Crazy Cactus opened yet? Anyone tried it yet?

                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                  1. re: FoodGuy12345

                                                                    Thanks for the review. I'm a big fan of Los Aztecas in Pottstown. I'll have to try Los Mariachis sometime. I knew the Crazy Cactus was too good to be true!

                                                                    1. re: obx_nancy

                                                                      i thought the crazy cactus was good actually. Their food isnt like hardcore spicy mexican but its very good
                                                                      Its real mexican food not like taco bell food so dont expect something from taco bell to be on your plate the owner actually cooked in a four star resruraunte in arizona i believe so its real maxican food
                                                                      but i have ot admit service was a little slow but they are just opening and running two resturaunts is a little overwhelming but they have great drinks i suggest your try it out

                                                                      1. re: yaymexico

                                                                        Went to the Crazy Cactus last night..........terrible. Everything was wrong. Guacamole had no seasoning, and not even a hint of cilantro or lime....just smashed avocados. Salsa looked good and was made fresh, but also lacked any basic seasoning. A papaya margarita tasted like red kool-aid with a float of tequila. A tostada appetizer came out with cold beef (and not much of it) on a soggy shell. A burrito filled with "carnitas" turned out to be about 80% fat and gristle. Chorizo enchiladas were served in a pool of shining grease. When I asked the server about this she said "that's how you know it's good". One app, two entrees, one magarita....$43+tip. Unacceptable food, service was ok (minus that comment) but hampered by the long walk they have to make. When sitting outside, you actually have to go through the other restaurant occupying the same building.

                                                                        It called "Crazy Cactus". It has a sign with a screaming cactus on it. Margaritas come in cactus shaped glasses. All over the menu you see words like: "hacienda, fiesta, and ole!".

                                                                        I should know better.

                                                                        1. re: yaymexico

                                                                          I dined at Crazy Cactus on Sunday and I thought the food was ok. It is authentic Mexican food (not processed) and I feel for the location it was ok and I would probably go again. The salsa was fresh. I like the options for tequila tasting and to be honest that is one of the main reasons that I would go back... I had the "flight" of Patron which you get 3 different 3/4 samples of Patron tequila ranging from blanco to gold for $10... anyone that has had Patron out in the restaurants/bars knows that Patron is usually $10 a shot! so to have 3 different shots for $10 I was truly excited... the waitress was really generous with the shots... I would give it another try because it is a new place and in my opinion there is not much more that you can do with Mexican food

                                                                      2. thought I'd give a quick mention to being addicted to the prime rib sub/zep? at Waskos on Gay street. They make it with BBQ sauce, provolone and onions - a combo that I never would ask for on my own, but it is totally delish!

                                                                        Also saw that there is supposed to be a new breakfast/lunch place opening in the old Moose building at 119 Main, which was for a short time the Destiny brewing Co. The South Main Cafe.

                                                                        1. Haven't tried the prime sub/zep from Waskos (yet), but their Roast Pork rocks !!

                                                                          Also, did I mention that Las Mariachis, located a few blocks away, has Menudo on their menu occasionally?

                                                                          There seems to be another restaurant coming near Iron Hill (can't remember its name). Anyone have any details?

                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                          1. re: percyn

                                                                            There are a couple of places opening up near Iron Hill, Marly's, That Italian Place and Baxters.

                                                                            Here is a link to info about them from aroundphoenixville.com


                                                                            Hope that helps!

                                                                            1. re: percyn

                                                                              One new restaurant near Iron Hill - across the street in the old superintendent building - is called 101 Bridge. It's apparently owned by Baxters or somehow otherwise involved; I've never been to a Baxters but given what I've heard of the place 101 Bridge is nothing like it. My hubby & I stopped in on a whim this past Thursday and were tremendously impressed. The menu is heavy on seafood & steaks with entrees in the $20-30 range. They also have a "bar menu" with burgers and sandwiches in the $10 range.
                                                                              We went all out and had a full meal & drinks. The ratatouille starter is to die for!! Lots of creative sides are paired with mostly standard mains in the entrees; I had the filet which came with grilled black truffle gnocchi & roasted garlic spinach, hubby had applewood bacon wrapped pork loin with sweet potato puree and roasted pepper marmalade. It was easily one of the best meals either of us have ever eaten.
                                                                              Fans of the Black Lab should adore this new place; IMO it blows Black Lab out of the water in terms of taste and creativity and the prices are comparable. Full bar, decent wine list, and the atmosphere is lovely.

                                                                              1. re: Lynn13

                                                                                Great to hear !! Do you know if they serve Brunch?

                                                                                1. re: percyn

                                                                                  They're only open for dinner now but there was a note in the menu that they'll be opening for lunch sometime in July. No mention of brunch but I'd love to see what they'd do with a brunch menu!

                                                                                2. re: Lynn13

                                                                                  Word on the street is that 101 Bridge is closed and will open in two weeks as Baxters.

                                                                                  1. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                    Great, Pville needs another bar with lousy food.

                                                                              2. went to marly's byo in on bridge st saturday night and had an awesome time the atmosphere was hip and casual and the food was amazing we started with the Ahi Tuna salad it was an explosion of textures and tastes next i had the shrimp and salmon in a spicy sweet coconut sauce that was great. there is outside seating on the back terrace that we cant wait to try when the weather breaks. fantastic night

                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                1. re: finnlizzy

                                                                                  I do not live in Phoenixville but go there every Saturday for cocktails and we usually are looking for somewhere different to eat. Nothing fancy or expensive just good. One of our favorites is Canulli's on Kimberton Road. Small place, nothing fancy at all but good Italian food and won't break the bank. Service is a little slow because everything is made to order but they have wonderful sauce. This is a BYOB. This is off the beatin path but parking is never the problem

                                                                                  1. re: LouieLou

                                                                                    Canulli's is on West Bridge Street/ Charlestown Road. From Rt 23 West, make a right at the traffic light where the Val-Rio Diner used to be on to West Bridge St. It's up about a mile on the right. Parking is in the back.

                                                                                  2. re: finnlizzy

                                                                                    Read a lot of good things about this place so I decided to give it a try but I'm not easily pleased, so I didn't expect much.
                                                                                    Had dinner there last week, it was muggy and gross outside so we nixed the idea of sitting outside and sat on the enclosed porch instead.
                                                                                    We wanted to start with something light as we brought both red and white wine and wanted to enjoy them both (I know, I drink too much wine)
                                                                                    Had the shrinp salad and a caeser, both were great, and I consider myself a caeser expert.
                                                                                    For dinner we split the gnocchi and the shrimp with torn pasta, not only were they both great, I loved going back and forth between the spicy gnocchi and the savory shrimp dish.
                                                                                    Warning- 2 bottles of wine and a belly full of pasta makes you sleepy
                                                                                    We couldn't even think of dessert, but the list sounded good.
                                                                                    The only thing I did not enjoy was the bread. I'm not big on bread, so it didn't matter much to me, but it was lacking,
                                                                                    Prices were good, like 15-30 for entrees? Portions were a little above average, but the quality was there.
                                                                                    All in all I left happily surprised that I still had money left in my wallet and a great new BYO down the street.

                                                                                    1. re: finnlizzy

                                                                                      we went to Marly's on Friday night. Overall I'd give it four stars out of five. Service was very attentive and the food was decent but they got our entrees mixed up (two of us got the filet mignon but one was medium and the other medium well. Also the coffee was very weak. Other than that the atmosphere was good and we'll go back again when we're looking for a high-end meal that's close by.

                                                                                    2. Has anyone been to Franco Ristorante lately? I've been taking my family there for several years. It's not the epitome of cuisine, but it's been a great place to have an affordable, tasty meal out with the kids.

                                                                                      My wife and I took the kids there recently and my jaw nearly hit the table when I saw their "new and improved" menu; the prices have gone up by nearly 50%!! I should've gone with my gut and left when I saw that, but the kids were hungry and I thought perhaps they'd jazzed up the food some. Nope. Same food we'd eaten a week before and smaller portions. I didn't mind that the seafood was obviously frozen or the veal not the best quality before the new menu, but at these prices it's a culinary crime.

                                                                                      To make it worse, when we were leaving we saw the owner (we've known him as long as we've been going there, so no mistaking who I saw) standing plain as day in the kitchen, smoking a cigarette while stirring a pot on the stove. I was, and still am, disgusted.

                                                                                      I'm really hoping That Italian Place opens their dining room soon. We got carryout there after the "Franco Fiasco" and found the food enjoyable and affordable, but unfortunately they've only got a couple tables right now and all were full when we visited.

                                                                                      If anyone has any suggestions for an affordable, kid-friendly restaurant in town ($10 range for entrees), I'd really appreciate your suggestions! The kids love spaghetti, but as far as I know Franco's and That Italian Place are the only real options for Italian food, right?

                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: Mike6863

                                                                                        Try Valley Forge Pizza on Route 23 across from La Taverna. Also, Villa Pizza by the bowling alley on Rt 724 has great pizza and platters.

                                                                                        1. re: Mike6863

                                                                                          There's always O'Gradys Family Resturaunt... reasonable and good for kids.

                                                                                        2. Just ate at the new Pickering Creek Inn. It used to be the Mansion House. I wasn't sure what to expect, we used to enjoy the Mansion House and were sorry when it closed.

                                                                                          However, the new place is great. Still the same layout, although it looks cleaner & brighter and the big screen TV is an added bonus.

                                                                                          The menu has completely changed and has a variety of items, from appetizers to sandwiches to entrees. Prices are very reasonable, around $7 for sandwiches, $18 to $21 for entrees. They are also serving Sunday brunch, which we will have to try. Their beer selection is amazing. Good microbrews on tap and an unbelievable selection overall.

                                                                                          We'll definitely go back. I would recommend trying it, not near as pricey as some of the other new places in town and well worth it.

                                                                                          14 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: Sidney6270

                                                                                            We had drinks and appetizers at the Pickering Creek Inn last night and really enjoyed the food. Had mussels, homemade tortilla chips with guacamole and shrimp tomato salsa (excellent) and caesar salad. I'm pretty picky about my caesar salad dressing (tried 12 versions at home before I found the best one) and liked this one. The menu looks great, prices are reasonable. We'll definitely be back, thanks Sidney6270 for the recommendation.

                                                                                            1. re: Sidney6270

                                                                                              Where is the Pickering Creek Inn exactly? Sounds interesting.

                                                                                              1. re: elayne5

                                                                                                It's where the Mansion House used to be.

                                                                                                1. re: Georgest

                                                                                                  I have been there several times now and I can agree that the food is very good for the prices. I heard that the chef came from the Gen. Lafayette, or similar. The beer selection is good...many Belgian & Belgian-style brew. The service should improve with time, as they are "still getting the kinks out" before the grand opening (it's been under a soft-opening status for the last couple of weeks). I also had their brunch yesterday, which was good but there wasn't anyone else in the place so the food wasn't restocked and things got over-cooked in the warmers, etc. Brunch is also a bit pricey at $16pp, so I'm hoping that will improve as well. All in all, I can say that I'll be back and that I encourage anyone to check "The Pick" for yourself.

                                                                                                  1. re: Fitzy31

                                                                                                    We had dinner last night at Pickering Creek Inn and it was very good. Husband had the roasted squash soup and pot roast that melted in your mouth and the gravy was exceptional. I had the crabcakes, they were so big I had to take the second one home. The vegetables were outstanding, cooked just right. Watched the Phillies win the World Series on one of the best picture tv's I've ever seen in a bar. One of the owners, Jeff, and his wife are great folks, they make you feel welcome. Great food, great prices, hope they continue to build their business. We go out to dinner every Wednesday and it is getting harder to find a place with great food worth the price. Please check this place out, you won't be disappointed.

                                                                                                    1. re: katesprings

                                                                                                      I ate at Pickering Creek on monday and watched the Phillies game. additionally, I had the pot roast and thought it was extremly bland. Pot roast is supposed to be slow food and the prep was all wrong. The vegi's were not cooked in the "gravy", they were added at the end. The meat was tender enough and was cooked slowly, but yeilded little flavor. Their servers don't understand anything about the food or the draft beer at the bar, but it's Phoenixville and good help is hard to find. Burger was ok the previous week, but served on a cold roll. Why wouldn't you toast the thing before serving it up?
                                                                                                      I live in this town and the only place worth the effort is Majolica. All the talk of the "restaurant scene" is a joke. They are nothing more than a collection of bars that serve average food (and no so cheap prices). Even Black Lab is serving up expensive meals. You used to be able to get something decent for under $20 an entree. For a few bucks more you can eat at Majolica, Birchrunville, Blackfish or Alba - all are winners.
                                                                                                      as far as a good deal on food in Pville area - go to Kimberton Station (located right accross from kimberton Inn). That's good food at a decect price and it's byob

                                                                                                      1. re: Piko

                                                                                                        As far as I'm concerned....the best hing in Phoenixville is when the Texas BBQ trunk rolls into town. There's good stuff here....but it needs time to mature. I don't have much hope for Marley's or 101 Bridge. Their menus look like they came out of the same "new-american" cookie cutter.

                                                                                                        Anyone else hear a rumor about Majolica closing or moving?

                                                                                                        Always toast the roll.

                                                                                                        1. re: Major504

                                                                                                          Piko, I've been cooking pot roast for over 30 years and I have to disagree. Besides, the vegetables added at the end makes them crisp and not overcooked. I agree the servers need some experience but then again we're not looking at high end restaurants like Majolica (had a bad server experience there) or Birchrunville (I can walk from my house there) and was so hungry when we left I would not bother going again.

                                                                                                          My recommendation is for the diner that wants a good meal for their hard-earned money. You just can't get that at many places these days.

                                                                                                          1. re: katesprings

                                                                                                            Hey Kate,
                                                                                                            I understand where you are coming from and it's simply a matter of taste. We prepare our pot roast a bit differently:) Have you been to Kimberton Station? When you talk about value, I think there's no comparison between the two places. Although, to be fair KS is BYOB. I've heard others say they leave Bville hungry (some very good friends). I have not, Some of the sides they put out on the entrees are kind of a joke. I'm on my third set of owners there and to me it's always been a place to really relax and drink and eat and yak...you know what I mean.

                                                                                                          2. re: Major504

                                                                                                            Major, I heard from a Majolica-regular buddy that they're looking to move into the old bank bldg. on the corner of Main & Church (across from Wachovia).

                                                                                                            First weekend of the month....Tex is back in town!!!

                                                                                                            1. re: Fitzy31

                                                                                                              That's what I heard......I gotta hold onto the rumor I heard about what's taking it's place...but it is gonna be a restaurant.

                                                                                                            2. re: Major504

                                                                                                              Oh wow, I've been eyeing that BBQ deal for months now but have never been able to coordinate eating their stuff - thanks for the review!

                                                                                                      2. re: Georgest

                                                                                                        We went to to the Pickering Creek Inn on 12/30 for dinner and it was a forgettable experience. The staff was friendly but the food was average and they charged $2 on the children's menu for a glass of milk! My son ordered a personal pizza and it clearly was a Red Baron job that they probably bought from the local Acme a few blocks up on Starr St.. I had a BBQ brisket sandwich which was OK but the onion rings that I ordered as a side were "frizzled" and were better suited to be put into a sandwich than as a side.

                                                                                                        Overall, it wasn't a disaster but there are certainly some better options along Bridge Street for a family of four, starting with Iron Hill, which is not exciting but is at least dependable.

                                                                                                    2. re: Sidney6270

                                                                                                      Pickering Creek Inn is definitely an upgrade from it's former Mansion House existence. The menu and beer selection are both better. Is it Majolica or Black Lab? Of course not. But that's not what it's there fore. Plus, they have great live music.

                                                                                                      Biggest complaint is not gastronomic; it's geographic. The so-called Pickering Creek Inn is -- get this -- on the French Creek. In fact, it's in the FLOOD PLAIN of the French Creek. I have pictures on my website to prove it. The Pickering Creek is past the south side of Phoenixville and nowhere near this place. http://www.olivers.us/gallery/phoenix...

                                                                                                      But if you're not a stickler for geography and naming, and just want good food or good beer in a relaxed bar with live music on some nights, I recommend it.

                                                                                                    3. Are you serious?! Black Lab is the back bone of Phoenixville. They were the first to go to the "new Phoenixville". A simpler fare to Majolica? From my experience at Majolica... lets put it this way we left hungry after they asked us to relinquish our table to the next guest. Majolica has a lot to learn.

                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: PCAB23

                                                                                                        has anyone been to Cannuli's in Pville? I can't find any info online.

                                                                                                        1. re: Piko

                                                                                                          I have been a few times--it is a good homey family run place, decorated like someone's comfy living room from the 70s. The food is good homestyle Italian and quite reasonably priced. I've had the mussels with garlic and white wine--and the gnocchi--both good. Desserts are mostly homemade by the daughter of the owner who is also the primary waitress.

                                                                                                          If you are looking for gourmet, this is not the place, but it is good comfort Italian food.

                                                                                                          1. re: Lola2007

                                                                                                            Thanks Lola. Was thinking about going there this past Saturday, but opted for Italian in Paoli (the second san Marco location). It was alright. The place was packed at 6pm and they were turning people away at the door. Lots of families and retirees. It ended up about $100, but half of that was wine. there is no cheap Italian places anymore. Anyway, I'll stop in Canullis on a weeknight and give it a try.

                                                                                                            1. re: Piko

                                                                                                              Hi Piko. If you go to Cannuli's, just know that it is a quirky sort of place. I get where Lola2007 is coming from when she says it is decorated like someone's living room in the 70s, but I might change that a bit to say that it is more like someone's comfy basement. Panelled walls, poor lighting, plasticy seating. But that said, it is a return to just a neighborhood kind of red gravy place that I love. Go for it and check it out!

                                                                                                          2. re: Piko

                                                                                                            Cannuoli's has been operating continuously in Phoenixville probably longer than any other restaurant. That says something.

                                                                                                        2. So...
                                                                                                          Is 101 Bridge worth a shot? I'm interested in hearing some reviews now that they've been opened a few months and have hopefully gotten rid of any new restaurant kinks.

                                                                                                          5 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                            Well, I actually stopped in a couple of weeks ago as we were thinking of going there. A couple of comments. First, it's much more upscale than the typical P'ville restaurant. Not a bad thing...just letting you know. I'd be uncomforable unless I was dressy-casual (slacks and a button up shirt for a man). I wasn't dressed for it on that night so took a menu for the road. Prices are VERY expensive. Again, I cannot comment to say whether it is worth it but compared to Marley's, Majolica or Columbia which seem to be the more upscale places in town, it seemed the most expensive of all of them. Now the food could be phenominal for all I know. I believe the owners are the same owners of the Baxter's places in Great Valley and Paoli. I have always found them okay but nothing special.

                                                                                                            Anyone been to Marley's? Am going tonight for the first time and have heard good things.

                                                                                                            1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                              we went to marley's right when they opened and had a great meal. :) the place is beautiful as well.
                                                                                                              have fun tonight and be sure to report back!

                                                                                                              1. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                                Went on Friday night. Not bad....Menu was nice. Bento box that night was very good. I got the Hangar Steak and was not thrilled with the portion size. Mind you, I am not one who thinks bigger is better and often laugh because people equate quantity to quality. However, it was a very small portion of meat...then again it was $21 which for a cut of that quality is inexpensive. I would up it to $26 and give a decent size. My wife had the special which was pork medalions stuffed with broccoli rabe and it was great!

                                                                                                            2. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                              We had dinner there last Friday (2/27/09). After both agreeing that it was the worst $100 meal we'd ever had, we then it agreed we'd never had such a horrible meal for $50. Maybe for $25. Every single thing about our entrees was AWFUL. For appetizers, I had the lobster bread pudding, because the waitress recommended it as a "signature" dish. It was good, but I sincerely doubt there was any actual lobster in it. My husband had some type of beef carpacio that he liked, but said it needed a little more salt. We were fine with the appetizers. Then our entrees arrived. Mine was allegedly chilean sea bass over a cabernet risotto, with some type of sauce (spring pea, maybe) and asparagus. The chilean sea bass may have been haddock, for all the flavor it had. It had a panko breading, and the fish appeared to be undercooked, because the breading was mostly beige, only browned in a few places. However, the fish actually had the consistency of mashed potatoes. The only way I can figure the fish was mushy but the outside was uncooked is that they defrosted frozen fish by microwaving it. It had absolutely NO texture, besides mush. No flakiness at all. It would have been easier to eat with a spoon than a fork, and chewing was definitely not necessary! However, the risotto made up for the mushiness of the fish - it was so undercooked that it was almost crunchy. It had no creaminess at all - it had to have been undercooked by at least 10 minutes. The sauce may have been okay - too hard to tell through my disgust at the fish & risotto. There were pieces of white asparagus on top of the fish. They looked like they were peeled from the base of the asparagus (the part you would peel off and throw away because it is too tough), and that's exactly what it tasted like. The asparagus was undercooked, fibrous, woody, and so bitter that I had to eat a piece of bread afterwards to get the taste out of my mouth. (Speaking of bread, the bread came with a trio of butters - one plain, two flavored. All 3 of them had obviously been sitting uncovered in the fridge for so long that they had a "freezer-burned" taste, like ice cubes that have been in the freezer too long.) On to my husband's meal - he was really excited about it. It was a veal chop with a wild mushroom mac & cheese. The veal chop was absolutely charred on the outside. He was hoping it was just seared and still rare-ish on the inside (BTW, the waitress did not ask how he wanted it prepared). No such luck - it was overcooked all the way through, and very tough. The macaroni and cheese had obviously been baked in a large pan, then cut into individual servings, which must have then been reheated. His mac & cheese was a perfect rectangular shape, with dark spots from being burned, I assume during reheating. It was so burned that I could hear the pasta crunching like raw pasta as he chewed it. My husband always cleans his plate, and he left a good portion of his meal on the plate. The food was so bad that we didn't even bother complaining, because we didn't want to try anything else on the menu. We had a gift certificate, and figured that we'd better use it, because we will NEVER go back again. The meal, before drinks, was about $95 for the two appetizers and two entrees. When we eat out, we like to go high end (Majolica, Morton's, Flemings, Nectar etc.), so the prices weren't the issue. The fact that the food was disgusting, improperly cooked, and inedible was the issue. I don't know how a cook with even basic diner training could in good conscience send out two entrees where there was something wrong (more like nothing right) about every single component on the plate. Stay far away!

                                                                                                              1. re: justdunnit

                                                                                                                I haven't been there but my wife has been and pretty much echoes your opinion. Very pricey and wasn't totally blown away by the food.

                                                                                                                On another note, we finally got a chance to check out The Crazy Cactus sharing the Bull Tavern building with La Taverna. It's about what I expected. My wife thought it was terrible. Said her margarita didn't have any tequila in it. I thought the Fundido Cheese w/ Chorizo was ok, though a bit small for the price. We were going to order guacamole before we saw another table get theirs and it was the same size as the salsa we were given and I think they wanted 6 bucks for that. I got the chicken enchilladas. I thought they were decent. I liked the mole sauce they came with. The rice served with them was completely cold. My wife got the chicken burrito, which she wasn't happy with at all. She said that it was bland, didn't have any cheese, or sauce on the inside, as advertised. She also said that her rice was just rice-a-roni boxed rice. Sloppy. We were confused a few times when a runner/busser would come over a minute after the waitress would leave and would ask us if we were doing ok, or needed anything. Huh? Weird. The other strange part is that they wouldn't take our empty plates unless we actually handed the plates to them. I dunno. It was just a strange experience. I wasn't as disgusted as my wife but I've eaten in dives before with decent results. When all was said and done...
                                                                                                                1 - margarita (didn't like)
                                                                                                                2 - dos equis drafts
                                                                                                                1 - Fundido & Chorizo dip (ok - & had for free with coupon)
                                                                                                                1 - kids quesadilla
                                                                                                                1 - enchilladas entre (ok)
                                                                                                                1 - chicken burrito (didn't like)
                                                                                                                $41 + tip

                                                                                                                Maybe give 'em another shot but I think I could be flying solo.

                                                                                                            3. I'm new to Phoenixville. I only tried most reviewed restaurant once. So my impression maybe not reflex the true quality of any restaurant.

                                                                                                              Iron Hill Brewery: good dependable food. I'd go there again.

                                                                                                              Majolica: Can't understand the buzz. The lamp two way was OK. The grilled lamp chop was tender and juicy. The roasted/stewed lamp was bland. The sea food dish was awful: the mussel wasn't fresh. The monk fish was wooden. For the price, I can find many much better restaurant in Philly.

                                                                                                              Black Lamp: Only had lunch. The price and food was OK. The swordfish was over cooked.

                                                                                                              Liki Japanese: Twice, I liked them. I'd go back frequently.

                                                                                                              Molly: Irish pub. What do you expect? OK food, large portion. I'd go back for a beer.

                                                                                                              Thai Place in Giant Plaza: Good food though not authentic Thai. I'd go back frequently.

                                                                                                              Epicurean: OK food, I have mix feeling about it.

                                                                                                              Sly Fox: Good beer. Food not exciting. But the turkey breast on the pretzel roll is a killer. That's the only thing I order there plus the beer.

                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: hydrogen

                                                                                                                Majolica closing on Saturday....sad.

                                                                                                                1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                  I am so upset that Majolica closed on Saturday. Does anyone know if maybe they are just moving? I thought they had the best food in town and it just shocks me that they have closed.

                                                                                                                  On another note, we had dinner at the Birchrunville Store Cafe on Wed. The fact that Saturday reservations are booked through June should give you a hint of how the food is. WOW, what a great meal. About 10 minutes from downtown P'Ville in lovely Birchrunville for any who are interested.

                                                                                                                  1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                    I read that Majolica is reopening with a more inexpensive concept.

                                                                                                              2. I may be confused but I just read that a Creole BYOB is going where That's Italian and Panini's used to be. Didn't That's Italian just open? I thought they had a little market area where they were selling fresh mozzarella.


                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: obx_nancy

                                                                                                                  Ok, so apparently Philly.com messed up. I asked & That Italian Place said they have no plans to change names & had no clue what I was talking about- the article misprinted by writing 150 Bridge St. (address of That Italian place- Panini's was 154)

                                                                                                                  1. re: pamd

                                                                                                                    wondering now if the girl on the phone was just clueless about her place of employment!

                                                                                                                2. Just returned from an awful experience at Los Mariachis in Phoenixville. I went with someone who is from Mexico & we ordered Al pastor for the kids (pork tacos) which they get at every taqueria we go to. We were surprised to see that the pork was shockingly red & the kids asked why. When we asked the server, she said it was red food coloring. So we didn't eat the 7 tacos & ordered 7 tacos with plain pork (carnitas) which were tasty.
                                                                                                                  However, the owner didn't take the 7 bright red tacos off of the bill even though they were untouched & he said we should have known not to order them. This is the first time either of us has *ever* seen Al pastor colored with artificial red food coloring.

                                                                                                                  9 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: Metasequoia

                                                                                                                    While I can understand the surprise of seeing something so familiar to you looking so different....I have to ask...why didn't you try the taco? Sure, the red coloring isn't the most attractive or necessary, but maybe they we're really good. I've been the Los Mariachi's many times....though I've never had the Al Pastor. Everything else I've tried there has been very good. I have had Al Pastor in other places and have seen some red colored versions. I think it originally comes from using achiote and/or red vinegar in the marinade. Achiote has some flavor, but for all intensive purposes....it's a food coloring. I bet some places are either using this, or using artificial color to fake the effect.

                                                                                                                    In response to their charging you for the tacos.....I gotta agree with them on this one....you ordered their taco, and that's what you got. Untouched is of no consequence....it's not like they're gonna reuse them...........I hope.

                                                                                                                    1. re: GreaseFire

                                                                                                                      You've never returned food you didn't like to be reimbursed?

                                                                                                                      1. re: saturninus

                                                                                                                        Not unless I felt that something was prepared improperly. I would certainly try the food before returning it. If something appears wrong on the plate....I'll ask the server. If it's over/undercooked, swimming in grease, burnt, tastes sour, or has foreign objects in it....then we have a problem. If I ask the server why it's brown, and she says "that's how we make it" then I'm SOL. At that point I taste it. If it stinks....well then now I know better. I've eaten a lotta weird stuff....I can't imagine asking for my money back because I don't agree with their recipe.

                                                                                                                        Also, please know that my comments are not intended to praise Los Maricahis or change any opinions. If you don't wanna eat pork dyed red....don't. Neither do I. I'm glad Metasequoia posted this fact.

                                                                                                                        I think I tend to fall on the side of the restaurant in most cases because I believe that there should be a great amount of trust involved when dining out. I believe in ordering off a menu without asking the kitchen to change anything. I think the best meals are found when a diner puts their trust in a good chef. Sure, there are more places than not out there breaking that trust everyday....but that's no reason to change. While I believe that a restaurant owes a customer a debt just for them walking in the door....I also feel that the customer did choose this restaurant, and did make a choice off the menu on their own.

                                                                                                                        Blah, blah, blah....

                                                                                                                        1. re: GreaseFire

                                                                                                                          Exactly GreaseFire. I've never expected a reimbursement simply because I didn't like something, especially something I didn't even taste. But then I hear of folks trying to return perfectly good wine they didn't happen to like.

                                                                                                                          1. re: GreaseFire

                                                                                                                            I understand your point, but if felt I was walking through the door of an authentic mexican restaurant and was told my meat was red because of food coloring, I too would have returned the dish.

                                                                                                                            1. re: saturninus

                                                                                                                              If you walked through the door of a Chi-Chi's and got red meat what would you do?

                                                                                                                              .....and yeah, I'm pretty sure Chi-Chi's is dead.

                                                                                                                            2. re: GreaseFire

                                                                                                                              I've had that Al Pastor, and I'm pretty sure it's red from Achiote/Annatto, which is sometimes called a food coloring, so that might have been all they were saying. Take a look around, recipes for Al Pastor often include achiote paste or annato, and Al Pastor is often reddish from the marinade. But even if they juiced it with a little red food coloring, I don't think I understand the revulsion. The Red Dye #2 scare was decades ago. Is there evidence of toxicity of currently available FDA approved food colorings?

                                                                                                                              If you prefer not to have it, that's your right, but if your Tandoori Chicken comes out bright red, do you send it back? How about your Chinese Roast Pork (especially those delicious pork buns at dim sum)? Birthday cake? Do you refuse all cakes with colorful frosting? Do you refuse a Manhattan if your bartender put a marascino cherry in it?

                                                                                                                              There are artificial colorings in a lot of food that we don't even pay attention to, and I don't think there's any proof that they're harmful, so it just seems like an overreaction to post (in two threads) what an "awful experience" you had because your pork was reddish.

                                                                                                                        2. re: Metasequoia

                                                                                                                          Maybe the first mistake was taking someone from Mexico to a Mexican restaurant in the states :lol:

                                                                                                                          1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                            Or maybe taking someone to what is marketed as a "Mexican" restaurant because that's what American's understand, but it's really El Salvadorian?

                                                                                                                        3. Anyone been to Marley's recently? I am wondering if they have worked the kinks out. With Majolica's gone I was hoping this would take the place of the "eclectic" place downtown but last time we were there a few month's back it was just okay and seemed like they were still getting up to speed with some of the dishes.

                                                                                                                          8 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                            Actually, Majolica isnt gone - they recently made some changes and re-launced. Had dinner there the week of the launch and it was still as good as ever! The menu is more 'main-stream' - prices are a little lower too, but the food/ingrediants are just as good. The meal was excellent. Although the menu is new, Andrew is still offering the Farmhouse tasting menu. Hope they can make it under their new concept!!

                                                                                                                            1. re: EpicurBurbs

                                                                                                                              Does Majolica do lunch, or just dinner? Their website makes it look like no lunch.

                                                                                                                              1. re: bucksguy14

                                                                                                                                To be honest, I have no idea. We have only been for dinner. I would recommend calling them to ask. Regardless of what they did historically, they may have changed their policy with the re-launch. Good luck.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: bucksguy14

                                                                                                                                      Spoke to the lady at the art gallery today (the one underneath the Artists Upstairs). She told me that an Italian restaurant was opening up right beside Majolica. It will belong to the same people who own Black Lab. She was under the impression it would be very high quality.

                                                                                                                            2. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                              My husband and I goto Marly's all the time and we think its one of the best places around. We ate there last night to try there new spring menu and it was great. The Chef/owners name is Mike (I believe) I had some questions about how he did some of his dishes and you can see how much food means to him. Im not sure what dishes you might have had a problem with, but I think Chef Mike worked them out. If you still found some things wrong I think you should ask for him, he would probally want to hear it so he can fix it right away.

                                                                                                                              1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                                Had dinner at Marly's again a couple weeks ago and sat outside, I have to say, I LOVE this place. The food and service put it miles above the rest of phoenixville. The staff is super accommodating, and the food speaks for itself, IMHO.
                                                                                                                                Another place to try, the bookend cafe on rt 23. The sandwiches they have for lunch are BEYOND great. they are also beyond messy, but whatever, once you have one you'll see, and the prices are so cheap you feel like you're stealing from them.

                                                                                                                              2. Has anyone been to Thai Place recenly? Close friends went on Friday and both became ill shortly after leaving. Another problem was that the food was extremely salty and when he complained, the dish was taken and returned within seconds...result? They just watered it down.
                                                                                                                                Upon asking why the food was sub-par, they were told that the assistant/sous chef either had taken over or was taking over (they couldn't tell which). I hope that the owners fix the problems soon, as I absolutely love Thai Place.

                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                1. re: Fitzy31

                                                                                                                                  Not sure which you are referring to. There are two in the area. We eat at Thai L'Elephant frequently and never had an issue (other than their prices which are a bit on the expensive side)

                                                                                                                                  1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                                    Thai Place - near Giant & MickeyD's. The same couple went back this week and all was well.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Fitzy31

                                                                                                                                      That is definitely good to hear that it was a temporary snafu in food prep. I am a huge fan of Thai Place, and wouldn't want to see the quality go down!

                                                                                                                                2. We ate at the Crazy Cactus last night for the first time---and the last time. The food was mediocre at best, small portions, and way over-priced. The chicken enchiladas were swimming in mole sauce that was too sweet. The sauce tasted almost like apple butter. The side dish of rice was very small, and none of the food was served hot. For 3 entrees and 1 soda (no appetizers, no desserts, and no other drinks), our bill was $40. I also found the room to be noisy. It was less than half full but quite loud. The room was painted in bright colors, but there was no carpet or curtains to buffer the sound. This was an expensive, disappointing experience.

                                                                                                                                  1. Just found this post and found it irresistible to reply!

                                                                                                                                    I have lived in Phoenixville for most of my life. Moved there when I was 8 and I have seen this place have things come and go over the years, and most recently have witnessed a full revitalization of the small town. As far as food goes, I have been a vegetarian for the past 7 years, so I have very specific dining needs.

                                                                                                                                    Here is my list:

                                                                                                                                    1. Thai Place - Absolutely a must! And I say this as a half thai. The food _is_ authentic for Bangkok regional Thai food. My mother is from the Northeast region which is a different style. The Thai place food is delicious - they can prepare everything with Mock Duck or Mock Chicken if you are a vegetarian like me... however my absolute favorite dish there is the Pad Woon Sen (fried glass noodles). The owners are very Thai and they are great. I am a repeat customer because of them. Thai L'elephant I've been to twice, and they don't quite win me over like Thai place does.

                                                                                                                                    2. Iron Hill - When this location of Iron Hill opened in my backyard, I was thrilled! Iron Hill beer is palatable but there's a rotation of new things to keep it interesting. My problem with the restaurant is that the bar area is so small. We love to get pizza here since it is quite well made.

                                                                                                                                    3. Pickering Inn - This is the old Mansion House from when I was a kid. The place is haunted if you weren't aware of this. During Halloween there are walking tours that stop here to talk about the Underground Railroad that is still to this day a door in the basement of this building. They have fabulous beers on tap. I love the beers, but I find the bar a bit awkward to sit at (one side is shorter than the other). As far as food goes - some good vegetarian sandwich was on their menu when I was last there, and I enjoyed it with my beer.

                                                                                                                                    4. Palermo's - Makes amazing Falafels, babaganoush, and hummus. Also their calzones and pizza are to die for

                                                                                                                                    And others.....

                                                                                                                                    Majolica - I have not eaten here but I have heard that they reduced the cost of their menu. I went to high school with the owner's wife, so I know that the establishment is run by good people.

                                                                                                                                    101 Bridge - I ate here for my birthday last year (special occasion calls for more expensive dinner) The food was okay, but they put bacon on top of my dinner as a decoration... I'm still bewildered as to why they'd do that.

                                                                                                                                    Molly Maguires - I love the atmosphere, love the beer choices, hate the food

                                                                                                                                    Sly Fox - I hate the atmosphere, love love love the beer!!, hate the food

                                                                                                                                    Epicurean - Like the bartenders, and sitting at the bar watching fish swim while I drink a decent brew. I don't like eating here though.

                                                                                                                                    Sals Pizza Box - Makes an AMAZING cheesesteak. (before I was a vegetarian I always got them here)

                                                                                                                                    Liki Sushi - Not the best sushi that I've had. I prefer the drive to Bonjung up the road in Collegeville, because Bonjung is the best in the area!!

                                                                                                                                    16 Replies
                                                                                                                                    1. re: Lindarrr

                                                                                                                                      Palermo's is that good, huh? I'll have to try them out. Villa Pizza, near the the bowling alley, is spectacular! My only gripe is that they don't deliver.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Fitzy31

                                                                                                                                        I'm with you Fitzy...Villa Pizza is the best around.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: obx_nancy

                                                                                                                                          Tell me more. Why is it so good? What's the crust like? Is the sauce more spicy or sweet?

                                                                                                                                          1. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                                                            The sauce is neither sweet or spicy, I guess it just tastes like fresh tomatoes and herbs. Maybe a little sweet but not sugary. What I like most about their pizza is that they use real shredded cheese, not that plastic mozzarella so many places use now. The crust is thin but a little chewy at the same time. Their topping are also very good.

                                                                                                                                            We like to eat in or pick it up. The take competitors coupons, so if you get a flyer from TD's its worth it. I think the plain pies are 12 dollars w/o a coupon. My father orders from their alot and he orders his pizzas "well done" because he likes the crust really brown and crunchy.

                                                                                                                                            Either way, it's not a floppy, fake tasting pizza like most other places in town. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

                                                                                                                                        2. re: Fitzy31

                                                                                                                                          I'm a big fan of Palermo's too. Love the pizza & falafel on pita. Also, for those who like to eat healthier & don't care for pizza places, they have a great variety of delicious salads too.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: pamd

                                                                                                                                            Which Palermo's would you recommend in the Phoenixville area, the one on Nutt Rd or the one off the Royersford exit?

                                                                                                                                            1. re: percyn

                                                                                                                                              I have only been to the one on Nutt Road by the GIant shopping center.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Lindarrr

                                                                                                                                                love Palermo's, it's the closest to "boardwalk" pizza around! I think Royersford & Phoenixville are the same, Royersford a little nicer, they also have wifi.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: shellbellc

                                                                                                                                                  Went to Palermo's in Royersford and got pizza, pasta and falafel.

                                                                                                                                                  It was quite full for a weekday, but all I can say is either they were having an off night or I am missing what the hype is about. The food was just mediocre and I would much rather have the brick oven pizza from Roccos.

                                                                                                                                        3. re: Lindarrr

                                                                                                                                          Where in the world is the PICKERING INN? Do you mean the Kimberton Inn?

                                                                                                                                            1. re: bucksguy14

                                                                                                                                              Actually, a quick check on google gets you nothing for the Pickering Inn. The restaurant is called the Pickering CREEK Inn which I now know.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                                                au contraire - typing "pickering inn" in the google search bar will get you this -
                                                                                                                                                Welcome to The Pickering Creek Inn! - www.pickeringcreekinn.com -
                                                                                                                                                The Pickering Creek Inn - Where Fine Food and Drink Prevail!
                                                                                                                                                www.pickeringcreekinn.com/ - 2k - Cached - Similar pages -

                                                                                                                                                1. re: bucksguy14

                                                                                                                                                  Not the point. The post said "Pickering Inn". Without asking whether the poster meant "Pickering Creek Inn" or "Kimberton Inn", how was I to know which she was talking about? But thanks for policing the board for us. I didn't know I wasn't allowed to ask questions. It was directed to Lindarrr.

                                                                                                                                                  Sorry, I just hate when people say "check google". The board is here for a reason and I asked for a clarification.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                                                    Just don't look for the Pickering Creek In on the Pickering Creek (which is nearby), since it's on (and sometimes in) the French Creek. http://www.olivers.us/gallery/phoenix...

                                                                                                                                          1. re: Lindarrr

                                                                                                                                            Bonjung is the BEST! I took my hubby there - not a fan of sushi - but he really enjoyed it. I like Liberty Pizza yum... it reminds me of pizza from down in Delaware county - Eagle Pizza. Great crust. Never tried Villa so I don't know how they fare against Liberty.

                                                                                                                                          2. Just went to the Black Lab for dinner. Awful. What a wasted of money. Great service but the food was not good. Won't go back. I kept looking over at Majolica wishing they didn't have a private party that night.

                                                                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: neener41

                                                                                                                                              That stinks because I have been there in the past and thought it was very good. Wonder what's changed. Majolica is great. Have not been there since they "reinvented" themselves. Not even sure why they bothered to change but hey...something new to try.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                                                We were there two sundays ago. Still VG, not quite as expensive. We were hoping to try the much advertised smoked chicken, but they weren't doing it any more. We were told if we warned them in advance, he would smoke some for us.. We'll still do it, but like everyone else, our going out for dinner budget is down.

                                                                                                                                                Birchrunville is still our first love, and our monthly splurge is there. Then Majolica. And we still have some fidelity to Alba in Malvern. And that's before excursions to NY and Phila.


                                                                                                                                                1. re: FrancisdeR

                                                                                                                                                  I love Birchrunville as well. Great meals there! We have not tried Alba yet so we'll have to get there. I am a PHilly and NYC boy as well. What amazes me about the two cities is that, IMO, NYC beats philly in almost every area, with the exception of food. NY has more of almost everything and better of almost everything (again my opinion) but I'd stack Philly's restaurants against theirs any day of the week, with the exception of Steak Houses and Delis. I don't think Philly comes close to Ben Bensons, Peter Lugers, etc. nor places like the Carnegie or Stage or Katz's.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: fishacura

                                                                                                                                                    Not sure I quite agree with NYC restaurants vs Philadelphia. I would however say that Philly BYOs are unique and not found in NYC.

                                                                                                                                                    BTW, have you tried Allegria in Exton (http://www.allegria-pa.com/) or Kimberton Inn? Those would be my choices in the area after Birchrunville, Majolica and Alba.

                                                                                                                                                    Marly's in Phoenixville is a bit hit or miss but on a good day put out some decent food.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: percyn

                                                                                                                                                      Well what I'd say about NYC is that you can find the top restaurants in the world, but a lot of duds also. In Philly, my experience has been that there are very very few duds so perhaps my statement would be that percentage wise, I think it has better restaurants.

                                                                                                                                                      Allegria...yes. Thought it was okay but I am a bit of a snob when it comes to Italian food as my parents are "off the boat" and I have visited Italy many times

                                                                                                                                                      Kimberton Inn - My absolute favorite. Site of first date with wife, rehearsal dinner, baptism of child, etc. Jeff, the owner, is meticulous and it shows. I'd stack this against Dillworthtown or any other chester county inn any day of the week.

                                                                                                                                            2. Any good fish restaurants in P'ville area? I'm a big fan of Kim's Seafood on Route 113, but would love something a bit more upscale.

                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                              1. re: Liam I am

                                                                                                                                                Sadly, imo, no. I suppose Legal Seafood in K of P is your best bet. You'll pay for it but the food is good (upscale chain like a Mortons for seafood). Tough for seafood in this area...head to Maryland and you'll be tripping over good places...

                                                                                                                                              2. I keep driving down Main Street and notice a sign in the window of that new market in the historic building at the cross street of Church St. that says something about a Middle Eastern restaurant opening. Anyone know what's up?

                                                                                                                                                1. First a disclaimer... I didnt read all 175 replies so if I seem redundant to what others have written please excuse me. As an 11 year resident I have seen so many changes - some good - some not so good... One that is GREAT is Marley's. Marleys is the last resturaunt on the strip on Bridge street it has a wooden front with an enclosed porch - It's BYOB but the food and service were EXCELLENT! I would recommend it to anyone. The Black Lab is good if you catch them on a good day. I agree with some of the bloggers about Molly's - the food is just okay - wasn't all that I thought it would be. I agree if you ever catch up to the BBQ guy - pull over and order his smoked brisket... reminds me of BBQ from NC - fantastic. The last 2 times we went to the Epicurean we were very pleased - one was for sunday brunch which was very good. The iron hill is a chain so it's like every chain resturant out there - okay but not great...Cheese! is very good if you ae seeking out something special to serve at for your dinner party and you gotta love Irish Joes for that laid back diner feel for a good breakfast. Haven't been to Mimms yet but I love creole so I know I'll be finding my way there soon.My hubby & I went to La Creperie and were not impressed - service was extremely slow.Not on the strip but up Rt 23 is Liki - great sushi and habashi food - another BYOB. Last but certainly not least - not in the strip of Bridge street but Phxville non the less is 7-Stars - that is a gastronomic feast! Tonight we're trying Kim's Seafood. It's gotten some really good reviews from friends of mine - half seafood market/half resturant... it's gotta be fresh

                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: xpopeye

                                                                                                                                                    Just to quickly update this thread, Cheese closed in Phoenixville a while ago, and La Creperie has also just closed. Lots of neat places in town still though!

                                                                                                                                                    La Creperie Cafe
                                                                                                                                                    1722 Sansom St, Philadelphia, PA 19103

                                                                                                                                                  2. Has anyone ever been to the Fisherman's Friend out on 724 where 23 turns left? Is this a sleeper with an outdated front, serving great food? Curious...I mean, anyone announcing Chicken Croquettes on their sign out front has gotta be 'old-school'?


                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                      While you may be confusing the name of the place with a certain throat lozenge, The Fisherman Restaurant in Phoenixville is as old school as it gets, and I love it. Totally dig their croquettes and authentic old school vibe, and hope they never change it. I always preferred their diner type food to the Vale Rio, but be prepped, it's pretty plain American food, nothing fancy.
                                                                                                                                                      Here's a link to a piece I wrote about it for my website Retro Roadmap - I think the fact that I entitled it "My Fave Restaurant In Town" tells you something!


                                                                                                                                                      1. re: modbetty

                                                                                                                                                        Thanks so much. That's what I thought when I saw 'chicken croquettes' on the sign out front and now, for sure, I'm gonna head over there. Not interested in the scene, not interested in fancy, just interested in some good down-home cooking.

                                                                                                                                                        There is a place called Fisherman's Friend...it's in Stonington Maine...lol!

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: modbetty

                                                                                                                                                          Thanks modbetty! I'm embarrassed to say that I had grown up in the area and never once set foot in there even though over the years I'd been involved with commercial archeology. I think since an early age my parents dismissed it for one reason or another, it just never registered later in life to check it out.

                                                                                                                                                      2. Lots of new places popping up around town. Anyone know anything about any of these:

                                                                                                                                                        Middle Eastern/Hookah Bar on the corner of Main and Gay in the old bank building
                                                                                                                                                        Hot dogs and soft pretzels on 23 across from the new Walgreens
                                                                                                                                                        Antigua Guatemala on Main, south of Gay where the brewery was for a short time
                                                                                                                                                        Italian (?) place in the hotel on Bridge catty corner/across from the Fenix
                                                                                                                                                        Oven baked bread/cheese place near Iron Hill

                                                                                                                                                        10 Replies
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                                                                          and unfortunately I read (on Twitter via @PhxvilleDish ) that 101 Bridge has closed, and Bookend Cafe will be closing.

                                                                                                                                                          Good news is that Pepperoncini from Conshy is opening their 2nd loction in PXV and a juice bar called Strawberry Fields is opening in town too.

                                                                                                                                                          Loving Handcrafted Cookie, wondering if the other bread store in town is ever going to open?

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: modbetty

                                                                                                                                                            Wish we could get a cheese store back! And a good bakery that sells real bread! I want to buy these things in P'ville, not drive to Wegman's!

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                Brick Oven Bread and Cheese Shop is open. Just came home with a bag of wonderful breads. The cheese case has a nice selection and the owner Jerry said more unique cheeses are on the way. They also had pre made sandwiches. The coffee machinery was not up and running today, but should be tomorrow or the next. There are a couple of tables inside, none outside yet. Enjoy, support local.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: boscog

                                                                                                                                                                  Thai L'Elephant moving from 724 to the closed Crepe Restaurant. Bummer for me as that was closer, but I'll make the trek into town I guess.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                    Yes, and parking will be tougher. But the lady at Thai L'E was very enthusiastic about moving, and we like them enough we will follow them.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                      It's one of my husband's favorites and another reason to go to Bridge St. It's like restaurant row down there, but they have to get the parking worked out! I'm used to parking in the city but on the weekends Phoenixville is impossible.

                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: boscog

                                                                                                                                                                      And now it appears to have closed. Drove by it yesterday, and it looks pretty empty, no lights on (Saturday 11 am). Such a shame. We needed a place like that. The cheese person had been Michael Ramondo's helper when we did have the cheese store. Gerry made good bread. He tried selling upscale charcuterie, etc., but I gather that didn't go anywhere.

                                                                                                                                                                2. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                                                                                  Very good food & service. It's casual and spacious. Reasonably priced with large portions.
                                                                                                                                                                  NOTE: Guatemalan cuisine is in between Mexican and Venezuelan (i.e Sazon in Philly).

                                                                                                                                                                  Try any of the following:
                                                                                                                                                                  BEV ~ Horchata (Sweetened milk with cinnamon)
                                                                                                                                                                  BEV ~ Fruit Smoothie (Banana)
                                                                                                                                                                  APPT ~ Pupusas (both Cheese & Pork) w. Latin Sauerkraut.
                                                                                                                                                                  ENTREE ~ Any of the Special Caldos (Seasoned Beef Stew)
                                                                                                                                                                  DESSERT for (1) ~ Atol De Elote (Sweet corn soup w. Cinnamon)
                                                                                                                                                                  DESSERT for (sharing) ~ Sweet Plantains w. sour cream

                                                                                                                                                                3. Thai L'Elephant opened at the old Crepe Place and it's as wonderful as it was when it was at the Strip Mall on 23. Great lunch specials too! Let's make sure to support these folks!

                                                                                                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                    What type food is served? What specifically did you find "wonderful". Thanks for the tip!

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                      Has their service gotten any better in comparison to the old location? My wife and I ate there (or tried to) four times - the first was great, the second time we got up and got the menus ourselves after 5 minutes of waiting, had to ask for someone to take our drink order, and left another 10 minute later when we neither got the drinks or someone to take our order.

                                                                                                                                                                      It was a bit crowded that night, so we gave them another shot a couple of months later, with only slightly better results even though there was only one other table taken - it ended up being over 45 minutes before we got our food and it was nothing that should have taken long. For some reason, we stopped in once more, with pretty much the same "service" as experience #2 that had us walking out at 15 minutes without drinks being served.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: bsims76

                                                                                                                                                                        I have been there for weekday lunch at the new location, about 4-5 times. I always have the special and usually have the chicken coconut soup, the thai dumplings (very good) and have had varoius curries; Friday I had Evil Jungle Princess which was appropriately spicy. For dessert, I had the homemade mango ice-cream, which presentation was spectacular. Wish I could add a picture. A real test of the service would be a Friday or Saturday night, but I never eat out on a Saturday night, at any place, as that is usually the worst night in terms of service...anywhere. Thursday night would be my night to try it for dinner. But the service was good at lunch and I notice more people there, every time I go. Which is a good thing.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks for the details of your experiences. Thai worth a try, if you will!

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Bacchus101

                                                                                                                                                                            Now I wish that people would also try the Asian Cafe on 113 where the State Store is. They do Sushi and an assortment of Oriental dishes and I worry about them because there are never very many people there. The couple that own it are so nice, but they don't have the money (or don't understand) the need for ADVERTISING. So I'm putting out there on this Board.

                                                                                                                                                                    2. Has anyone tried the 'Taste of the Tropics' Filipino cuisine that opened on Rt 724 where Thai Elephant used to be? If so, please report.

                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                      1. Two things to report:

                                                                                                                                                                        Black Lab Bistro up for sale -- read the comments at the end for a clarification.

                                                                                                                                                                        Hog Island Steaks opens up in Acme Shopping Center

                                                                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                                                                                          Guess that that Brick Oven Bread and Cheese Shoppe did not make it? Saw a 'lease' sign in the window today.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                            There's a new bread place (Bread Shoppe) that will be opening at this location sometime in April. I know the building owner and he confirmed the deal...no other updates yet.

                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                                                                                            HOG ISLAND - YUMMY!
                                                                                                                                                                            Picked up some cheesesteaks today for lunch and they were totally yummy....my fav is/was Joey's but I think Hog has ousted them...they have some execution and logistic issues, but hey that is to be expected with a new business. Only critique - I would prefer cherry peppers to banana peppers. A non cheesesteak eating offspring ate 2 slices of pizza and loved it. Loved their cheese fry cheese. Happy Hog has come to Phoenixville & there's parking!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: yummykimmy

                                                                                                                                                                              I take this so totally back....had another cheesesteak there today & it was terrible. They did seem to switch from banana peppers, but I'm not so sure what were on my steak were cherry peppers, they were all finely chopped and not cooked in with the cheesesteak....almost like the italian hoagie spread in a jar...not good. Even the non cheesesteak offspring soured on the pizza this outing....It's going to be a while before I go back...had to retract my glowing yum from above.

                                                                                                                                                                          3. Anyone know anything about Pat's Pizza in the newly renovated building on the corner of 23 and Charlestown Road (near the Walgreeen's)? Is this going to be one of those wood-oven pizza places?

                                                                                                                                                                            Pat's Pizza
                                                                                                                                                                            3103 Route 88, Point Pleasant Boro, NJ 08742

                                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                              If it's the same chain as around here in Delaware, then no. Forgetable run of the mill Italian/pizza.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: RC51Mike

                                                                                                                                                                                It is the same chain. Really......do we need more pizza shops here....how disapointing.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: GreaseFire

                                                                                                                                                                                  Oh geez, you are right GreaseFire....what ARE they thinking? I saw the renovations and was hopeful....what a bummer...

                                                                                                                                                                            2. Don't bother with Tex's BBQ truck. Unless it was a bad day you could do better at home yourself with a store bought sauce. Really was not impressed in the least.

                                                                                                                                                                              I would also concur with what someone said earlier that Epicurian is really not good at all. The food in particular has been more dissapointing each time we have gone. So much to the point that we will not be returning. Plenty of other places to get a beer.

                                                                                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rexxer7

                                                                                                                                                                                You don't like Tex's? Hmmm...I think his ribs and brisket are pretty damn good myself. Not crazy about his overly chili powder-tasting sauce, but that's a minor thing, IMO.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: 94Bravo

                                                                                                                                                                                  ok maybe "in the least" is a bit harsh. The rib quality was nice it just seemed really overly smoky and like you said with the sauce being not great it just seems not worth it. I also had a brisket sandwich that had 2 giant slices of fat in it out of about 5 slices total in the sandwich... i'll give it another shot sometime i guess but I didn't care for the sauce at all

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: rexxer7

                                                                                                                                                                                    That's interesting...but I will still stick with the brisket from Tex's...now, I never get a sandwich. I always just get the brisket (and I loved the burnt ends) and the sauce to go, bring it home and have it with mashed potatoes and greens on the side, or coleslaw.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                                      I love Tex's brisket - always get the slab and never a sandwich. Reading all this stuff about Smoke Daddy's - would be interested to know what you think since we share the love of Tex's.

                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: rexxer7

                                                                                                                                                                                  I've had some bad food from Tex's but it was later in the day when the selection was smaller. Get there early and you'll do fine. My bad experience was a solid piece of brisket that I could barely get my teeth through. Whether it was just tough or sliced with the grain, I'll never know because it went right in the trash after my third noshing attempt.
                                                                                                                                                                                  I have been back and never had a negative experience since.

                                                                                                                                                                                3. Anyone know if Taqueria La Michoacana from Norristown is opening up in the old 101 Bridge spot in Pville? Same name, so I was wondering...

                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                                                                                                    Saw a sign for hacienda???? going into 101 Bridge when I was at Iron Hill last week.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. New Cafe opening in Phoenixville! Chef Julie Zlogar is opening The Wooden Spoon, on Main Street next Friday...Look for the red bench. she is next to Best Friends.

                                                                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: boscog

                                                                                                                                                                                      I heard about this. Is Julie doing catering or take out or what? Do you happen to have a contact for her?

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: isadorasmama

                                                                                                                                                                                        Julie is in the shop getting it ready to open and cooking for her catering clients. Don't have their shop phone number yet. There is limited seating in the cafe and food and drink to take away. Cannot wait! Look for opening Friday June 24th.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: boscog

                                                                                                                                                                                          I saw at Kimberton Whole Food Cafe that Barbey Bonnet's baked goods will be there....which is a very good thing. We need more bakery options in P'ville.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                                            I got takeout from the Wooden Spoon yesterday. The quiche was incredible...crust was from scratch, not pre-made! Also got a cheese gougere, also wonderful...and of course, two Wootie Hoos, that I have missed from KWF! Shop is very nice, nice atmosphere...I pray they make it and aren't being gouged for rent! P'ville really needed a good bakery.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Hey, has anyone else tried Frank's Sports Bar, where La Taverna used to be on Route 23? We had wings and a few beers there the other day. It is going to be a great place to watch football in the fall. Tons of big screen TVs. The back patio is a great place to have a drink outdoors. The staff was friendly, the wings were good - I'm really looking forward to going back. Check it out!

                                                                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: justdunnit

                                                                                                                                                                                        Anything had to be better than La Taverna...that place was awful. It was like they were trying to make bad food.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gardens4me

                                                                                                                                                                                          Anyone tried the new The Wooden Spoon on Main Street? Take out and sit down lunch. Incredibly good quiche (crust from scratch), gougere, wraps, salads, desserts. Quiche is so good I've been back 5 times to pick up some for take out. Right down the street from the very over-priced Brown Cow Ice Cream Parlor.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Main Street Cafe
                                                                                                                                                                                          126 E Main St, Elkton, MD 21921

                                                                                                                                                                                          Ice Cream Parlor
                                                                                                                                                                                          32 Clinton St, Delaware City, DE 19706