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Feb 4, 2008 08:17 AM

Ethnic and/or BYOB in West Philly

Looking for a place for dinner on a Saturday night next month, somewhere near Penn; a place worth going to, either ethnic (not Mexican) or BYOB (or both).

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  1. While University City is chock full of ethnic/BYOB places that include a plethora of Indian and Thai places, I would recommend Cafe Vietiane (4728 Baltimore Ave.). It is Laotian/Thai/Asian, BYOB, inexpensive, and excellent. The setting is sparse but go for the food alone. While not necessarily that "ethnic" but BYOB, I would also recommend Marigold Kitchen at 45th and Larchwood. It is, IMHO, one of the better restaurants in the city period and they have a $45 three course price fixe that is well worth it. Set in a lovely row home in West Philly, it makes for a lovely evening. There has been a recent chef change, with a new Southern focus from what I understand. They have a website if you want to look at the menu.

    1. I would recommend Nan. It is billed as French/Thai. Great food and BYOB. I also second Marigold Kitchen.

      1 Reply
      1. Marigold Kitchen was up there with my favorite restaurants in the city in 2007, but when 2008 started they changed chefs. It's no longer modern middle-eastern food, much to my disappointment, but modern Southern food. So that's not ethnic anymore.

        Vietnam Café (corner of Baltimore and 47th, not sure if that's what schpsychman meant) has some really good, and really cheap food. Especially the lemongrass chicken soup.

        3 Replies
        1. re: bagwhat

          Vientiane is a Thai/Laotian place that's been there for years, while Vietnam Cafe is Vietnamese and just opened up last month (by the same family that owns Vietnam in Chinatown - similar menu, and Fu Wah market next door to Vietnam Cafe). Both places are excellent. I really liked the chicken penang curry and sticky rice at Vientiane, and the bbq platter special at Vietnam Cafe: crispy spring rolls, pork in grape leaves, meat on a stick, and chicken bun thit nuong.

          1. re: Dib

            Do you know if Vientiane or Vietnam Cafe are open on Sundays? If not, are there any good Viet places that are in the Penn/Drexel area?

            1. re: george2

              I don't think Vientiane is open Sundays, but Vietnam Cafe definitely is. It was even crowded (all 10-11 tables...small place) this past Sunday during the Super Bowl.