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Sep 10, 2009 01:31 PM

Hymie's Deli and other Main Line good eats

I'm going out to the Barnes on Saturday and want to get a good lunch somewhere after. I don't know the Main Line well at all but I want to hit up something worthwhile in the area as I am not out there very much.

I'm thinking about Hymie's Deli. I'm a huge fan of Famous 4th St (best corned beef, pastrami and smoked fish I've had around here). How does Hymie's compare? Is it worth it since Famous is very accessible to me?

Are there any other "destination" type spots out that way? Anything from casual lunch counter to upscale dining is fine.


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  1. HI Barry...I live in this area...I am not sure how Hymie's comparies to Famous 4th St...but I worry that you might end up disappointed...I live just a minute from Hymies and in fact I never go there though I know it does have its fans.

    I like Sam's Grill in Wynnewood for a good lunch place; there is also Sang Kee Asian Bistro in Wynnewood for Chinese.. its a little swankier than the Chinatown location; I actually like Panera Bread in Wynnewood for soup, salad sandwiches etc. though it is a chain and probably not what you are looking for.

    Also convenient to the Barnes you have The New Tavern, reliable restaurant where you could get a burger, hot or cold sandwiches or wrap, or hot entree. Also Aldar Bistro for Mediterranean, has some things that are good...if you go there I recommend the grilled squid appetizer and the lamb kebab; they have great hummus and pita bread too.

    There is a sort of average BYOB Indian place, Saffron Kitchen, that could be a decent lunch spot; also if you like sushi I recommend Ginza in Narberth. Ginza is BYOB but they will give you complimentary beer or sake.

    1 Reply
    1. re: rocknroll52

      None of these are particularly compelling... I am willing to drive a bit to go somewhere worthwhile if there is anything! I am just never this far out and getting a car, would love to make the trip even more worthwhile.

    2. that pretty much sums up the Bala dining scene and yes its not very compelling!!

      Since you have a car maybe drive over to Manayunk to Coopers Brick Oven Wine Bar.

      7 Replies
      1. re: rocknroll52

        Actually a excellent place is the little pub on the corner that I am completely blanking on the name but maybe someone else can help out w/ that.
        I agree, Sam's grill in Wynnewood is very good and worth the 10 min. drive.

        1. re: bonappetite

          Some other suggestions out on the Main Line include: Maido, a Japanese market in Narberth. They have a small lunch counter with a limited menu of Japanese "comfort food." They have a website that you can look up the menu ( Also in Narberth is a little gem of a French bakery, La Patisserie Francaise. Narberth has a cute little downtown area, good for walking around and window shopping. A little farther away is Carlino's Market in Ardmore. I haven't been there myself yet, but friends speak highly of it, kind of like a smaller scale suburban DiBruno's. I don't think it is eat in, but it would be a good place to pick up a sandwich or salads. I have been to Viking Bakery, also in Ardmore, which I think would be a good place to pick up some dessert if you are in the area. Both of these places are a little bit off the main drag in Ardmore (Lancaster Avenue).

          1. re: refinnej

            Thanks so much. I'm having trouble finding the bakery--did you mean Le Petit Mitron on Haverford Ave?

          2. re: bonappetite

            are you thinking of the Pub at Penn Valley on Montgomery ave?

            1. re: rocknroll52

              I checked this place and it sounds pretty good. I think we may hit this spot up for a little suburban gastropub love. thanks!

              1. re: barryg

                sounds like a good report back and let us know how you like it!

        2. Hi Barry...did you end up going to the Pub at Penn Valley?

          3 Replies
          1. re: rocknroll52

            Did end up at Pub at Penn Valley. We got there around 3:30, they were still serving lunch and there were a few other tables.

            The atmosphere was nice and the service was good. Overall the experience was fine and I would go back if in the Main Line. Putting on my 'hound hat, though, I have to say that this place doesn't compare very favorably with food-centered pubs in the city.

            The complimentary Italian rolls with olive oil was a nice surprise for a pub, and the bread was fresh and very good. The draft list was not bad (I didn't see a bottle list); among the three of us we tried the Victory Oktoberfest, Sly Fox Summer Ale (the only craft options if I remember correctly), and a lager. Everyone commented the beer tasted off and didn't have much discernible flavor. To me, it tasted like the taps were dirty.

            We got their "famous" wings, which are breaded wings in a creamy sauce that was like a mix of hot sauce and ranch. These were pretty good and although the wings were on the small side, we were served 12 instead of the menu listed 8, so I can't complain there. A nice change of pace for wings.

            I got a roast pork sandwich (I am on a bit of kick trying roast pork all over the area) which was served on an appropriate, fresh Italian long roll. We also got a stuffed portobello sandwich and a chicken-penne pasta. The roast pork was OK, too much bland provolone IMO and melted on top instead of on the bread side which is my preference. I didn't get an opinion on the portobello but my partner didn't like the pasta and didn't eat much or take it home. Sandwiches were served with frozen, seasoned curly fries. Not my favorite but they were decent and not over-seasoned like these can sometimes be.

            Food prices are low but beer was not ($5.75 for the Victory and Sly Fox). Seems like a pretty good spot to drink and grab a bite, but I'd skip it for a meal given the option.

            Taking the 'hound hat off, the Pub seems likes a good neighborhood spot and I can see why it is popular. And apparently they give away a 32" LCD TV every week for bingo night???

            1. re: barryg

              Thanks for the great report Barry! The beer with the "off" taste is a nonstarter for me!

              I thought of another pub place that is not too far --if you are out this way again. Yeats in Wynnewood. That's the place where we go when in the mood for that sort of thing. They have several craft beers on tap, plus Guinness and some others. Lots of TVs. The place is clean and I've never had to complain about the beer tasting off. They have decent food, though nothing that really stands out as fantastic. We usually get crabcakes or burgers there. Service is good.

              1. re: rocknroll52

                We went to Yeats for lunch last Sunday and it was a travesty. It used to be owned by one of the Irish Founders of the Pub at Penn Valley and one of his sons. The other son still has the PaPV. I don't know who owns Yeats now, but don't bother for a Sunday lunch. First of all, the otherwise extensive (and somewhat pricey) menu is limited (to whatever the cook feels like making) until 2:00.

                We were enticed by their "Best of the Main Line Crab Cake" which my wife had (mostly filler.) Nothing special. Kids each had a decent (commercial frozen patty) burger (cooked far beyond the requested medium rare. )

                I am a big fan of Roast turkey sandwiches (the best locally being the New Tavern in Bala, and the American Pub in Narberth)

                I got MINCED !!!! turkey on a hoagie roll with AU JUS on the side... Not turkey gravy mind you, but brown Au Jus (like for roast beef French dip.)

                Nobody bother to ask how the meal was. The finely ground turkey was not recognizable as light or dark meat (or turkey at all ...)

                It appears they have a nice beer selection. I guess it might be a good place to quaff a brew, but if they pay this little attention to lunch I could never see taking a chance on dinner there.

          2. Hymie's is as good a deli as I've eaten in -- including the Famous. It's impossible to leave Hymie's without a doggie bag or box. Sam's in Wynnewood is also good, but small and very crowded around dinner time. Not much elbow room. I agree with others who found Yeats wanting.