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Sep 3, 2012 06:48 PM

need restaurant recommendations for Main Line area

Near Villanova, Bryn Mwr, Radnor

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  1. It would be helpful to know your budget, type of cuisine, whether you are looking for a byob, etc. For a somewhat special evening I would suggest Sola which is a byob on Route 30 in Bryn Mawr. Reservations are needed. The menu is on-line. This is not a budget evening - an appetizer, entree, and dessert will average about $50 per person pre tax and tip. In my opinion it is worth it for a nice evening.

    12 Replies
    1. re: FayeD

      Parents weekend at Villanova coming up. Family of foodies, and a college freshman that needs a great meal! Price is not an object, food quality and a nice night out is most important. We are completely unfamiliar with the areas great dining options. Thanks for the help

      1. re: foodieinct1800

        Is there a reason you don't want to travel downtown?

        1. re: barryg

          Yes, its Parent Weekend at Villanova. Freshman foodie (and family) is craving non-dining hall food. But we need to stay near campus for event reasons.
          Thanks for your help!

        2. re: foodieinct1800

          Sola is a fine start but be forewarned that Parent's Weekend will likely find this small gem (12 tables) very noisy unless you plan to dine around 5-5:30. For Asian cuisine, Susannah Foo's is a wonderful upscale restaurant nearby. There is also the very popular Yangming which is always packed on weekends and the more sophisticated and hip Nectar which caters to a more yuppyish crowd with loud music competing with fine food after 6 pm. For the "best is last" upscale, Savona and its less expensive sister Barsavona fit the bill. The menus are the same. One side has fancy tablecloths, the other side not so.

          For lunches you can do no better than right in your own backyard. Bryn Mawr has a charming venue called Wyndham House which is inexpensive and has delicious homemade soups and salads and a fine luncheon menu to choose from. A bit farther up the road, and also a popular lunch spot (but again, can become very noisy), is Silverspoon in the Spread Eagle Village Shopping Center. Directly across from this small charmer is the more pricy George's, owned by restaurant icon George Perrier.

          For more dinner places: In Conshohocken there is Stella Blu for Italian. For fine seafood in a very small establishment is Blackfish. Get there early or else you know what! Up the road from there is a neat place that we oldies ventured into by accident and found a really neat menu (google it yourself and see) called The Stone Rose. Perfect place for the college crowd. And best of all, it is across the street from Scoops kiosk for some of the best ice cream and creamy yogurts around. The Main Line is really a mecca of great dining places --- one after the other. Your biggest problem will be in choosing. Bon appetit!

          1. re: arepo

            A wealth of information for us. And away we go! Thanks for thse terrific recommendations.

            1. re: foodieinct1800

              PS. When I said Wyndham House at Bryn Mawr I meant the college, which is also in the town of Bryn Mawr. They do take outsiders and it is 5 minutes from Villanova (my alma mater) but reservations are needed.

            2. re: arepo

              I'd give a +1 for Yangming but found Susanna Foo's to be cavernous, loud and overpriced for the bland fare (nothing like her downtown place) and Nectar has failed to attract a return visit. In Wayne, there are several options. I'd check out Matador for tapas or Margaret Kuo's (where Susanna Foo takes her family when they're in town) for both Chinese and Japanese but avoid Xilantro and White Dog. Even though open for a while, I have yet to hear anything about Paramour at the Wayne Hotel. I've been pleased, though, with both visits to George's. Reservations for all of the above are recommended on a parent weekend.

              1. re: Chefpaulo

                Paramour is pretty good, I've had a couple good meals there. The crispy chicken oyster dish and the pork cheek dish were both excellent, I haven't been there in a while though.

                1. re: Chefpaulo

                  We have liked the Yang Ming food but stopped going after being overcharged several different times without a slight apology when it was pointed out. SO has an accounting background so has to review every restaurant bill before giving over the credit card. The mistakes have included being charged for dishes we didn't order as well as just 'addition' mistakes. After the third time of this, we just stopped going. As I said the food was good, not great, but good. However if you go, check your bill

                  When we stopped going, we started patronizing Margaret Kuo instead and have never missed Yang Ming.

                  1. re: cook262

                    Many thanks for the heads up about Yangming. Three times would be a strike out for me too. However, I've always made it my lunch destination when in Bryn Mawr.

                    I've never been disappointed at Margaret Kuo's although I have yet to get upstairs to try the Japanese menu.

                    1. re: cook262

                      Yangming is another "Chinese" restaurant, many local Chinese simply refuse to patronize. I stopped going after a waiter refused to let me order a cocktail because, he sneered, "I don't drink that stuff". This really happened. Insider later told me when Chinese folks come in the door they assign that waiter to serve for reasons that sound kind of bias to me. I have tried to avoid such "preferential" treatment since.

                      But how about Hunan in Ardmore a few miles east on Route 30? The owners (related to Susanna Foo) are transitioning the management to the next generation and all three are knowledgable about the art of fine dining.

            3. I'd vote for Savona. Quite close to Nova.

              1 Reply
              1. Little further out but Restaurant Alba in Malvern is my fav of the bunch.
                Hunan does an excellent Peking Duck, but it must be ordered in advance.

                2 Replies
                  1. re: JanR

                    Third. I was there last Thursday and just reminded of how much I like that place.

                1. Near Villanova, Azie, great interesting sushi, great beet salad, awesome drinks, cool atmosphere.
                  White Dog Cafe, great drinks, service is "eh" depends on your server, also great beet salad, the burger is awesome, perfect steak and fries, everything I've had is great. For dessert they have a bread pudding in a mason jar that changes seasonally, it's to die for! Someone mentioned Matador. never been, but my Husband has on business and he says no way YUCK. I mention it because it is near White Dog. Susanna Foo is yum! The nicest people with great drinks great sushi and I love the shrimp curry.I saw someone mention Stone Rose. Good solid food. If you venture to Ardmore we like A La Mason. Not cheap, but great food. Back to Bryn Mawr there is Tango. We don't go as much as we used to, we just got bored, but there is quite a variety and I often see at parent weekend that Tango is busy.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: teachermommy

                    Azie leaves me cold except for the drinks and cool atmosphere but not as much as White Dog Cafe does. Yuck.
                    Tango is meh!
                    Susannah Foo's is the way to go and The Stone Rose is neat for the college crowd (and me!)
                    A la Maison is not a bad choice for French cuisine.
                    Never heard of Matador.
                    Flemings for a typical steak house and sophisticated atmosphere (next door to Susannah Foo's).

                    1. re: teachermommy

                      I've been to Matador several's not my favorite place but the food we ate was quite good