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Aug 4, 2011 06:26 PM

BYO in Philadelphia

Need a recommendation on Philadelphia's best BYO- Preferably French or Italian or New American cuisine-most important is that the food be of high quality.
We are staying in Rittenhouse Square area but have a car.

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    1. re: Buckethead

      Bibou is probably the best but is closed until Sept 7 for vacation. If that's a problem I'd suggest Modo Mio, Kanella, Fond or Little Fish. None are in Rittenhouse; there are plenty of BYOBs in walking distance of there but I think these are better/more consistent. BTW don't drive to Kanella or Fish, parking is pain. Take a cab.

      1. re: barryg

        Agree with barryg (especially on the Modo Mio and Little Fish recommendation). For Rittenhouse Square though, I would recommend Meme. Wonderful food and (although they have a license) they allow byob and don't charge a corkage fee.

        1. re: barryg

          Oopsie! I didn't realize Bibou was on vacation. If your trip will be during that time, I'd recommend Kanella instead, it's easily walkable from Rittenhouse and is one of the city's best BYOs. Meme is good but not quite on the same level as Kanella, Fond (which I love, but not as much as Kanella), or Koo Zee Doo (which is also kind of far from Rittenhouse).

      2. Little Fish and Fond are both excellent choices and BYO, although not in Rittenhouse. Fond's sweetbreads are amazingly delicious.
        If you would rather stay in the Rittenhouse area Melograno is a great Italian BYO that we always enjoy.

        1. Modo Mio, Bibou, Monsu, Koozeedoo.

          1. You didn't say when you would be here. Bibou is wonderful, but because of vacation might not be possible.

            My recommendation would be Matyson, on 19th Street - walking distance from Rittenhouse Square. You can see their menu online - consistently excellent. I would rank Matyson higher than most of the others mentioned.
            Fish, which is also excellent, is not byob.

            8 Replies
            1. re: sylviag

              +1 on matyson if you need a rittenhouse byo

              1. re: InSearchOfTacos

                +2 on Matyson. They are really doing great food, and they usually have a theme tasting menu each week that features some of the fresh ingredients. For example this past week they did a local tomato tasting for $45 dollars. Tastings are only available Mondays through Thursdays.

                Monday, August 1- Thursday, August 4 Featuring
                "Local Tomatoes"

                Grilled Cheese & Tomato Soup
                Gruyere, smoked eggplant

                Heirloom Tomatoes & Ahi Tuna
                Cucumber, fennel seed, bottarga

                Fried Green Tomatoes
                Dungeness crab, avocado, bacon

                Braised Lamb Ravioli
                Tomato butter, ratatouille, aged goat cheese

                Tomato-Basil Sorbet

                1. re: cwdonald

                  +3 on Matyson. Never disappoints!

                  1. re: doxiemom

                    thanks for all the helpful suggestions, matyson's was wonderful!

                    1. re: IPcook

                      Thanks for letting us know. Glad it was wonderful!

                2. re: InSearchOfTacos

                  For New American, Matyson is definitely a good bet--consistently delicious and easily walkable from Rittenhouse.

                  For Italian, Modo Mio is terrific, but very small and loud if that is an issue.

                  If you really want French, and it is during the time Bibou is closed, Cochon is a very nice BYO bistro. It isn't quite at the level of some of the others, but sometimes they hit it out of the park, and it is never bad.

                3. re: sylviag

                  Little Fish, Fish's sister restaurant in Queen Village, is a BYOB.

                  1. re: sylviag

                    I agree with my good friend, Sylvia. Matyson and Bibou are the two restaurants we recommend to our out of town visitors for non Italian byos. We dined at Matyson a few weeks ago and it was better than ever. Excellent innovative new american cuisine. Save room for their wonderful desserts.

                  2. I had an excellent dinner at The Farm and the Fisherman. Chef/owner was chef de cuisine at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, and his training is evident in the sourcing of ingredients and preparation of food.