Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Pennsylvania >
Mar 4, 2008 02:45 PM

My Philadelphia Restaurant Trip

On my trip (I'm not going, i'm organizing it for one of my dad's friends) I looked at these restaurants, which do you recommend?

- Brunch at Lacroix Restaurant
- XIX in Grand Hyatt
- Sam's Morning Glory
- Brasserie Perrier
- Pat's King of Steak
- Le Bec Fin
- Barclay Prime
- Old Bookbinder's

Thanks a lot (16 yr old foodie)

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Some interesting choices...kind of like comparing oranges and apples if you ask me (or more accurately caviar and a cheesteak)

    Breakfast at Morning Glory is very good, especially the French Toast, but there's usually a long wait in line involved.

    As far as lunch, comparing BP (or worse yet Le Bec Fin) to Pat's is an odd request. Are you looking for haute cuisine (say as in Le Bec Fin) or touristy cuisine (Pat's). If you're just looking for a decent, inexpensive lunch that you'd enjoy, let me suggest a roast pork sandwich at DiNic's in the Reading Terminal Market.

    Also, the dinner choices are perplexing. Bookbinder's is like the equivalent of an old relatives ashes on your mantle, nice to have around but well past their prime (if you will). I've heard generally positive things about Barclay Prime but have never been there.

    All in all, some interesting choices, and hopefully you will consider some other options, as some of your choices seem good but a few seem well...perplexing. You may want to narrow down the type of cuisine that your father's group wants and holler back.

    And most importantly, you're never too young to be a foodie. Especially in Philly!

    1. I am not a cheesesteak person, but I will bet you will get lots of opinions on that! We have had brunch at Lacroix MANY times and absolutely adore going there. So different and divine. LBF is really nice, but some will tell you it is overrated. I am not a fan of Old Bookbinder. The rep is good but I feel overrated. Barclay prime is a good pick. Too bad you are just planning and not enjoying!!

      4 Replies
      1. re: montcorealtor

        Oops, I did like 2 other threads like this, I am going on this trip!

        1. re: mreid01

          Isn't Barclay Prime the place with the 100 dollar cheesesteak, maybe they could combine the two together.

        2. re: montcorealtor

          That Lacroix brunch does look great but it seems like it would be a completely different experience from ordering from the regular tasting menus. Are the items on the buffet anywhere as interesting as the stuff on the menus seem to be?

          1. re: corgi

            I am not Montco, BUT, I have been to Lacroix for brunch and was delighted with the presentation and unique tastes from their buffet. Plus it is laid out nicely and I thought going through the kitchen was a blast. The only other time I have had that experience was at the Grand Cypress Hyatt in Orlando. Now that is worth the trip!! :-D

        3. Remove XIX, Pat's and Bookbinder's.

          4 Replies
          1. re: saturninus

            I agree with Pat's and Bookbinders, but why remove XIX? I've heard some very good things about XIX.

            1. re: JanR

              I've only eaten their twice - once for lunch and once for dinner and I was miserably unhappy with what I ordered. I wouldn't have paid half for the food I received.

              For example, many of the dishes did not come as described. A lovely sounding salad came out with just some greens and dressing, and the greens weren't even good quality. Shoestring fries were thick.

              1. re: JanR

                From what I understand, if you are into the raw bar, it's worth going, otherwise it isn't. The bar is kind of neat, and the view is nice.

                1. re: Buckethead

                  I recently had dinner at XIX with my wife and found it to be quite good, though quite expensive. The atmosphere and view are obviously quite lovely but I also found the food to be very good. We got to meet and shake hands with Mayor Nutter, who was there with his wife and child for dinner and was working the room.

                  My wife had a very good Chilean sea bass and my rabbit (leg and loin) was very good as well. The wine list is also quite expensive (paid $70 for a NZ Sauvignon Blanc but it was outstanding). My wife loved it and wants to go back but at the cost (2 apps, 2 entrees, bottle of wine, 1 dessert, espresso's, tax and tip was around $240) it will be some time before we do. There are definitely better restaurants in Philadelphia, but we were very pleasantly surprised by the meal we had and, as I have said, would return.

            2. Neither of the dinner places really tempt me. i say this having been to very few of the places on your list... but i've wanted to eat at LBF for a while - but, for me, dinner or not at all.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Bob Loblaw

                Certainly an interesting mix of lunch options that I wouldn't necessarily say in the same breath.

                Avoid Pat's, period.

              2. Nice choices, but there is so much more. For breakfast, consider adding
                Honey's Sit n' Eat, there are lots of great lunch options, including grazing at Reading Terminal Market, and if the friend likes wine, Tria and Vintage are well worth checking out for a very different dinner experience. Le Bec Fin is for some a once in a lifetime event, if the expense isn't prohibitive, it should be memorable lunch or dinner.