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In Philly for 3 days/nights, must try places?

p
PretzelGuy Nov 27, 2011 04:20 PM

Hi Everyone,

I made a similar post on the DC forums as we are going to be there for 5 days/nights.

Me and my cousin are doing a trip to Philly in about a week (first time over to the eastcoast) and staying for 2 days/nights, we are looking for a variety of food from cheap lunch spots to a fancy dinner so please suggest away. We are also looking for possible interesting bars/nightlife places to check out a well.

Some of the places we were thinking about checking out (additional feedback on these locations would be helpful as well):
Tommy Dinic
Morimoto
Pat's/Geno's (looking for other cheesesteak suggestions)
The Franklin Mortgage & Investment Co
John's Roast Pork

  1. Delucacheesemonger Nov 29, 2011 10:10 AM

    Sort of neat how responses can vary
    My must tries are:

    Nick's Roast beef- 20th and Jackson
    Tacconelli's pizza- East Somerville St
    These two, a car would help, not far from City center, buy a car would help

    Bibou- 8th and Washington
    Modo Mio- First and Girard
    Car would not hurt for these as well.

    8 Replies
    1. re: Delucacheesemonger
      bluehensfan Nov 29, 2011 11:32 AM

      Absolutely positively axe Morimoto. The sushi at Ebisu in SFO is a thousand times better.

      1. re: bluehensfan
        p
        PretzelGuy Nov 30, 2011 03:08 AM

        Definitely did after reading around a bit more:

        Our new revised plan looks like:
        Lunches: Dinic's, John Roast Pork, Dienners Chicken (?)
        Dinner: Amada, Bibou

        1. re: PretzelGuy
          bluehensfan Nov 30, 2011 05:30 AM

          Amada is good. Dienner's is decent but nothing special. I'd get there earier and get pancakes next door at the Dutch Eating Place myself...

          1. re: bluehensfan
            c
            Cheesesteak Dec 1, 2011 08:18 AM

            Farmer's Cabinet is a pretty interesting place right now. I'd definitely take somebody there if they were coming in from out of town for some interesting beers and cocktails.

          2. re: PretzelGuy
            r
            roze Jan 5, 2012 11:48 AM

            How far out does Bibou take reservations? I can't seem to find any info on their website.

            1. re: roze
              b
              Buckethead Jan 5, 2012 11:55 AM

              Are you on the right site? This is it: http://www.biboubyob.com/ , there's a Reserve Online button that takes you to Opentable. OT won't take a reservation more than 30 days in advance but if you call Charlotte at Bibou she'll take a reservation for a date beyond that, I've made reservations two months in advance.

              1. re: Buckethead
                r
                roze Jan 6, 2012 02:03 PM

                Thanks! I'll give a call. Btw OT let me make reservations at Eulogy Belgian Tavern and Barbuzzo for March which is two months away. Only Bibou didn't.

                1. re: roze
                  c
                  cwdonald Jan 6, 2012 02:06 PM

                  Each restaurant can govern how far in advance they want to release tables to open table. I think you will find higher end restaurants, and smaller BYOs restrict the time frame. In general with OP, if you cannot find a table, always call the restaurant. OP does not always reflect table availability.

      2. coookie Nov 29, 2011 09:49 AM

        talula's garden - excellent, not-too-precious farm to table
        matyson - excellent new american byob, with weekly themed tasting menus (as well as a la carte)
        paesano's - superlative italian subs and waaaay better than cheesesteaks, which i think suck
        han dynasty - outstanding spicy schezuan cuisine. not kidding about "spicy"
        manakeesh - cafe serving lebanese flatbreads. best i've had in the US
        nhu y - banh mi shop in south philly's little vietnam. get the special
        monsu - creative sicilian in the italian market area.

        that's just a start.

        1. h
          Hungryin theBurbs Nov 29, 2011 08:48 AM

          Yeah, I'd drop Morimoto. It is good, but you can get better on the West Coast. For your dinners, I'd think about:

          Barbuzzo
          Zahav
          Osteria
          Amada
          Bibou (this one is a BYOB, terrific french food)

          For the fancy dinner, do you want truly upscale atmosphere or are you more interested in the food?

          Philly also has a great gastropub scene, which might meet your dinner and bar interests all in one. Check out South Philly Tap Room, which seems to be a current favorite. There are many others throughout the city: Monks, Standard Tap, Dandelion, Pub & Kitchen, among others. Village Whiskey is also great for a terrific upscale burger and drinks.

          5 Replies
          1. re: Hungryin theBurbs
            p
            PretzelGuy Nov 30, 2011 03:07 AM

            Thanks for all the suggestions.

            I really wish we had more time to explore all the food in Philly.

            Our new revised plan looks like:
            Lunches: Dinic's, John Roast Pork, Dienners Chicken (?)
            Dinner: Amada, Bibou

            It was really hard getting a reservation at Bibou for a good time, any idea on how walkins are?

            1. re: PretzelGuy
              c
              cwdonald Nov 30, 2011 04:38 AM

              Walking-ins are non existent at Bibou. Small place and one of the top restaurants in the city. Suggestion if you have a choice between an early or late reservation, go early because then you won't have to worry about a dish being sold out.

              1. re: cwdonald
                h
                Hungryin theBurbs Nov 30, 2011 05:05 AM

                I agree you can't get a walk-in at Bibou. If you follow them on Twitter, they tweet when they have last minute openings.

                For lunch in the RTM, Dienner's is fine but not my favorite. I'd go for the boneless rib sandwich at the Rib Stand. I think it is one of Philly's underrated sandwiches.

              2. re: PretzelGuy
                b
                barryg Nov 30, 2011 06:17 AM

                Dienners is good--I love their wings--but why not branch out from RTM for lunch, you could go to Barbuzzo or Kanella (only open for lunch Thurs-Sun).

                1. re: barryg
                  b
                  Buckethead Nov 30, 2011 07:14 AM

                  I think Kanella stopped doing lunch on Thursdays, according to their site it's just Fri-Sun now.

            2. b
              Bigley9 Nov 29, 2011 08:05 AM

              Reading Terminal Market (DiNic's), John's Roast Pork (get a cheesesteak too), Zahav and South Philly TapRoom

              1. c
                cwdonald Nov 28, 2011 11:58 AM

                Where are you from? Knowing this would help people know what to swear you towards Nd what to avoid. Ie would not suggest Dim Sum to someone from San Francisco.

                1 Reply
                1. re: cwdonald
                  p
                  PretzelGuy Nov 28, 2011 07:34 PM

                  I'm from the San Francisco Bay Area and my cousin is from Texas (Houston/Austin).

                  Yeah I've definitely had some good Dim Sum out here! =)

                2. b
                  barryg Nov 28, 2011 11:11 AM

                  Skip Morimoto and Pat's/Genos, get a cheesesteak at John's Roast Pork instead. Franklin is great for cocktails, as is Southwark (which also has great food).

                  Otherwise this topic is covered on a lot of other threads:
                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/807588
                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/735958
                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/766062
                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/808479

                  1. bluehensfan Nov 28, 2011 10:49 AM

                    Do get the roast pork with provolone and broccoli rate at DiNic's and spend some time at Reading Terminal while you are there. If you are only in town for two days, hitting John's for more roast pork may be a bit too much.

                    Cheesesteaks are not my forte but Pat's and Geno's are more atmosphere than good food. Not bad but not tops on my list. Oddly I have similar feelings about Morimoto but it costs a lot more there than Pat's or Geno's. I'd definitely pass on this one. If you want something fancier, consider a place like Zahav for Israeli cuisine, although there are many other fine dining places in town that I'd go to before Morimoto depending on what type of food you are trying to have.

                    Dunno much about Franklin Mortgage though...

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