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Fine dining alone?

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athena877 Dec 8, 2010 03:52 PM

I'm looking for a nice restaurant for a solo meal. I've been to many of the really good restaurants in Philly with others such as Fountain, Vetri, Amada, etc and am looking for a good fine dining restaurant for a solo diner (something I haven't tried before). I'm more a fan of American or any ethnic food except traditional French (so not that excited about Le Bec-Fin). Thoughts I've had are: Prime Rib, Davios, James...what else comes to mind? I like a quieter (but not empty) place for a meal at a table instead of at the bar.
Thanks!

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    urbanfabric RE: athena877 Dec 9, 2010 05:16 AM

    I know Lacroix sounds French, but it's pretty American. It's a lovely setting for a meal. And, I don't know how quiet it is, but I would put Zahav on the list for you to try.

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      the scribbler RE: athena877 Dec 9, 2010 06:07 AM

      Fine dining means different things to different people, so you might get more precision if you clarify. Do you mean Daniel/Per Se level dining, or would you say more Gramercy Tavern level? The latter is much more plentiful in Philly. I'd put the following as good options in the less-fancy category: Matyson, Chloe, 10 Arts, or Meme (the first and third being somewhat "fancier," but all have good food). I don't think of them as "fine dining," but I might also look at Koo Zee Doo, the assorted non-Amada Garces places, Barbuzzo, etc. None of them are terribly quiet, but they're all quite good.

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        Buckethead RE: the scribbler Dec 9, 2010 06:18 AM

        Koo Zee Doo is really not a good place for a lone diner, the portions are meant for sharing and are humongous.

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        barryg RE: athena877 Dec 9, 2010 06:20 AM

        You might look at uhockey's experience eating around the city, he ate most of his meals alone:
        http://uhockey.blogspot.com/2010_08_0...

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        1. re: barryg
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          Philly Ray RE: barryg Dec 9, 2010 06:36 AM

          But he ate enough for three meals at each place...

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          Bigley9 RE: athena877 Dec 9, 2010 07:04 AM

          I think James is a good option, as is Zahav. How about Meritage?

          1 Reply
          1. re: Bigley9
            bluehensfan RE: Bigley9 Dec 9, 2010 07:40 AM

            I vote going to Zahav and seeing if you can ingest a whole lamb shoulder a-la-uhockey!

          2. joluvscards RE: athena877 Dec 9, 2010 08:29 AM

            Bibou has a cute counter with two seats where you can schmooze with the chef and staff. You would also be fine at one of their tables but we really enjoyed the counter.

            No matter where you sit you can be sure of a spectacular meal.

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              athena877 RE: athena877 Dec 9, 2010 04:19 PM

              Thanks for all of the suggestions, everyone! I have actually tried many of these places - I love Lacroix and Matyson; I also think 10Arts, Meme and Zahav are great. I have not tried Chloe yet (though I keep meaning to) and James is also on the list. I'd like something a tad fancier (I don't think we really have the Daniel/Per Se type places in Philly so much, except maybe for Fountain) but not stuck-up...that's why I was thinking a steakhouse type place like Prime Rib or Davios (I love Barclay Prime and thought Butcher and Singer was pretty good)....keep suggestions coming, please!

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              1. re: athena877
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                nwinkler RE: athena877 Dec 9, 2010 05:19 PM

                I think James sounds like a good choice, given your parameters. A few other places to consider on the fancier side: XIX, Table 31, and omakase at the sushi bar at Morimoto. Slightly less fancy but perhaps still interesting to you: Fork, Tinto, Marigold Kitchen, Positano Coast (I've always wanted to go here to eat crudo and drink white wine), or try to see if you can go off menu at Zama. Finally, Zahav rocks. It absolutely and totally rocks. If you haven't been, please go! (But maybe wait until you're with a group--it'd be a shame not to order the entire menu...)

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                scottb2 RE: athena877 Dec 9, 2010 05:10 PM

                When I'm dining out alone (which is rare), I always go for a sushi bar. Perhaps sitting at the bar at Morimoto is up your alley. You can order from the full menu.

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