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Aug 17, 2009 02:57 PM

SoSo recommendations

(I am really trying to get the nickname SoSo to catch on here for "South Of South", because it would be SO philadelphia!)

I'm a long-time Philadelphia foodie, but I've just moved to a new house on the west side of Christian, and to celebrate the occasion -- and to welcome my inlaws for a week long visit -- I want to plan a week of restaurants that are exclusively south of south (but no so far south that we can't walk to them!)

We have Cochon on the list (which I have heard great things about but never tried), and although we haven't been in ages, we're thinking of a return visit to Salt & Pepper. But I'm wondering what else I might be missing, what new openings I might not have noticed or long-standing favorites I somehow overlooked.

BYOs or liquor license, as long as the food is memorable!


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  1. What is the 'west side of Christian'? Christian runs east to west.

    If Cochon is on your list I would go to Bibou instead, on 8th a block and a half south of Christian. I like Cochon but Bibou is on a whole other level. If you've never been to either, Bibou should definitely be first on the list. It's BYO.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Buckethead

      >What is the 'west side of Christian'? Christian runs east to west.

      I'm *guessing* the OP means west of Broad Street...? Those of us who live in the former Graduate Hospital/South-West of Center City area have been arguing for some time over what to call the neighborhood, which is quite distinct from Center City, no longer accurately described as "Graduate Hospital", and "G-Ho", as some call it, offends many.

      That said Cochon doesn't fit the west-of-Broad description I'm familiar with. The first on my list would have been Sidecar as a true South-of-South, west-of-Broad, growing institution within the neighborhood. I can also recommend a bunch of places on the South side of South Street, which is considered (west of Broad) part of SoSNA and the SSWBA, but not entirely sure what the OP is asking for.

      1. re: sockii

        Yes, by west Christian, I meant the west side of the city, on Christian, i.e., west of broad. Come on, buckethead. Work with me.

        That said, I wasn't looking for recommendations only in my neighborhood -- I know the places around me (and eat at Sidecar more than I probably should admit) but miss places further afield. Like Bibou. I hadn't heard of that, but it looks great. Thanks!

        1. re: fava_bean

          I ended up finding there is too much to list without knowing what kind of food you are looking for, so places I have successfully taken people:

          --Divan--turkish, bring cash, just in case--is in your area.
          --Due east of you, the Italian Market is full of Italian places (I prsonally don't like Ralph's, but my mom loves it) also Isgro's pastries, Sarcone's bread, Sabrina's (intolerable wait for weekend brunch, but usually ok on work days and evenings--I like their Mexican fusion dishes). the Italian Market runs south all the way to Washington, at which point you hit one of the big Asian market/restaurant areas and Taqueria Veracruzano (my aunt loves, my mom hated, I like the taqueria in my area better).
          --Morning Glory is good for breakfast/lunch. I'm also fond of Fitzwater Cafe at 6th and Fitz. for brunch/lunch.
          --Famous 4th gives a fairly genuine take on NYC jewish deli fare--my mom loved it, her BF from Tennessee had never seen anything like it.

          On the fancier side, there's also Gayle, Southwark, Little Fish, Beau Monde, Dimitri's, Saloon, Royal Tavern, Vesuvio (a bar with decent food).

          1. re: feklar42

            Good list, feklar. OT but: what taqueria do you go to? Outside of Veracruzana, Gerabaldi, and Las Publas all the mom & pop taqueria are decent but I'm looking for great.

            1. re: barryg

              I live a couple of blocks from El Jarocho. So maybe I'm a little biased, but they are my favorite. Their chicken tacos are great and some of the "stirfry" dishes are good too. I think the one I like best is the Alambre<sp?>. They are also good neighbors -- the owner waves to me as I walked to work and cops always stop there for lunch.

    2. Ants Pants Cafe is one of my favorite places for brunch in the South Street West area. Love the bacon stack and sweet potato fries. But definitely good to get their early as the place fills up super-fast on weekends.

      I've never been all that thrilled with Morning Glory in the past, maybe I've just had bad luck. But it always seemed like a huge fuss and wait for bad service and just ok food.

      1 Reply
      1. re: sockii

        yeah, MG is definitely another wrk day only one. I like their bisquits, grits and fritattas.

        Bacon stack sounds intriguing, lol.