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Birthday Weekend in Philadelphia - Need Recs, Please

l
lattistar Nov 9, 2009 11:01 AM

Hi,

We're coming to Philadelphia this weekend on a whim for my husband's birthday (we live in Brooklyn, NY). We're staying at Rittenhouse 1715, and I'm looking for some ideas of where to take him for his birthday dinner.

Somewhere with excellent food and drinks, but not too stuff - we like a little atmosphere. Price is not an issue, so would like to hear all kinds of ideas.

We love Italian, Chinese, Thai, Middle-Eastern, Mexcian.

Just looking for a nice night out with an interesting atmosphere and great food.

Also, if there are any ideas on a place to go for a special birthday dessert, I'd love to hear them.

Thank you!!

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  1. b
    barryg RE: lattistar Nov 9, 2009 11:21 AM

    Zahav: Israeli small plates restaurant, great and creative cocktail list.
    Distrito: high-end Mexican small plates. Large cocktail list but I haven't tried anything besides the fresh fruit margaritas.

    Both are high-end food and great service without being stuffy. However, neither are in the Rittenhouse area, but are a short cab ride.

    -----
    Distrito Restaurant
    3945 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104

    Zahav
    237 St James Place, Philadelphia, PA 19106

    3 Replies
    1. re: barryg
      l
      lattistar RE: barryg Nov 9, 2009 11:35 AM

      Thank you! Zahav looks right up our alley.

      -----
      Zahav
      237 St James Place, Philadelphia, PA 19106

      1. re: barryg
        b
        barryg RE: barryg Nov 9, 2009 11:35 AM

        ...and if price is truly not an issue, and you can score a last-minute reservation, consider Vetri which has been called the best Italian restaurant on the East Coast.

        You would want to make reservations for Zahav and Distrito as well; they can get booked up on the weekend.

        -----
        Vetri Restaurant
        1312 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107

        Distrito Restaurant
        3945 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104

        Zahav
        237 St James Place, Philadelphia, PA 19106

        1. re: barryg
          b
          Buckethead RE: barryg Nov 9, 2009 11:41 AM

          Zahav and Distrito are both great, but if you'd rather walk, Tinto is close to your hotel at 20th and Sansom, and right across the street from it is Capogiro, which is a better dessert than 90% of the desserts at the city's restaurants.

          If price is really no object, I'd check with Vetri to see if they have a table available, but they probably don't.

          -----
          Tinto
          114 South 20th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103

          Vetri Restaurant
          1312 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107

          Distrito Restaurant
          3945 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104

          Zahav
          237 St James Place, Philadelphia, PA 19106

        2. j
          jpiglet RE: lattistar Nov 9, 2009 01:53 PM

          It would be better for a birthday lunch than dinner, but Indonesian hole-n-the-wall Hardena is one of the greatest restaurants I've ever been to, period. And I live in Queens near all of its spectacular Asian offerings. My wife and I literally drive to Philly just to go there. It is an extremely minimalist steam table set up, but the chef is the former cook at the Indonesian consulate, and the food is freaking amazing. They shut down around 8pm, but if you have a daytime meal to spare order the satay, and a plate with jackfruit, tempeh or collards, and a protein of your choice. Go there! Really. And happy birthday.

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