dinner halfway between Warminster and Collegeville, PA (just outside Philly)
Looking for dinner options that would be about halfway-ish between Warminster (our hotel area) and Collegeville, PA. We'll be visiting in the area next weekend and are looking for a good spot to meet some Collegeville friends for dinner on a Sat. or Sun. evening. We would prefer something non-chain with great food, casual atmosphere (ok for 3 kids aged 3-10yr). If they take reservations (for a Sat. especially) even better. I don't want to be waiting around for 30-45min for a table with the kids.
Our friends suggested a Chinese buffet that's their 'favorite', which would be ok, but I know there are some good and some not so good ones out there. Unfortunately, I don't know the name of the place. Any such buffets in that area that are actually good? Or any other restaurant really. I think they just mentioned it to suggest *something*. :)
Oh, a 'mainstream' kind of menu would be best, but I think any of these would be fine: Chinese, Italian, Mexican, Thai, regular American family restaurant w/ diverse menu as long as the food is good. And, if you have other ideas, please feel free to mention them. :)
Skippack would be a good half way place with plenty of good places: Parc Bistro (my favorite), Black Dog (upscale Asian fusion), Justin's Carriage House or Bella Rosa at the Hotel Fiesol.
Olce Pizza - excellent thin crust pizza - in Cedars (Rt. 73 south of Skippack) is likely the most kid friendly and is BYO.
I heartily second Chef Paulo's recommendations... with the caveat that Skippack is about 5 miles from Collegeville and 20+ miles from Warminster either via 202 which is a mess these days or the turnpike and Route 73.
The more equidistant places however have fewer non chain options. The OPs friends are probably referencing a chinese buffet in the Plymouth Meeting mall. As far as chinese buffets go, it is passable.
In the Plymouth Meeting Mall Area you have Redstone Grill, and PF Changs which as chains go are passable. The biggest issue there is parking, especially on weekends. Plaza Azteca is a small chain Mexican restaurant that some folks on this board like.
Outside Plymouth Meeting, if you go to the Conshohocken area: Blackfish is outstanding BYO french restaurant, Isabella is a nice small place italian/mediteranean restaurant, and Fayette street grill is nice american food. Coyote Crossing is a locally owned Mexican restaurant with a nice outdoor terrace to eat on.
One other area to consider is Fort Washington. Cantina Feliz is a nice upscale Mexican restaurant. (Does get a bit loud on weekends due to the amount of wood flooring.)
Zakes Cafe is a nice casual american place.