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Ralph's South Philly/ King of Prussia branch

arepo Dec 10, 2012 05:26 PM

Has anyone been to this new restaurant?

  1. Bacchus101 Dec 11, 2012 06:13 AM

    I have not been to this new location. I will be very interested in viewing the answers to your question and the comments. My experience with previous Ralph's have always been poor at best. Their other venture in Ambler failed quickly on a main street in the middle of town next to two theaters. Perhaps the name (past fame) will be a draw in a heavy traffic area. There is significant Italian food competition there, it should be interesting to see if they can survive and with a high per sq. ft. rent.

    1. a
      arepo Dec 11, 2012 09:06 AM

      I will bite the bullet and try it on Monday evening.
      Someone mentioned they were really very pleasantly surprised, but I don't know this person's tastes very well.
      We'll see.

      2 Replies
      1. re: arepo
        Bacchus101 Dec 12, 2012 05:00 AM

        How was the bullet? Love to hear your comments!

        1. re: Bacchus101
          arepo Dec 12, 2012 05:22 PM

          I promise to give my review after Monday's dinner.
          Hang around...

      2. d
        daveadoff Dec 13, 2012 11:06 AM

        I am very interested to hear what you think. My wife and I went there a few weeks ago to check it out and were very disappointed. I used to live right near the italian market and would go to Ralphs every once in a while for dinner.
        I was never overly impressed with the meal but liked the vibe of the old school Italian decor. We figured we would give the new place a shot since we are suburbanites now and our options are limited.

        Here is a breakdown of what I can remember.
        We were seated very quickly and the restaurant was beautiful, huge room with very high ceilings. We were seated in the bar area since we didn't have a reservation and the server came right over with menus and a wine list. We ordered a bottle of a sangiovese which took forever to come out and when she finally came back she was not sure it was the right bottle. Luckily it was the right wine and we had our glasses filled.
        Now onto the food. We started with a cheese plate that was on the pricey side, when it came out I was blown away. It was 3 pieces of cheese spread out on a large plate with a balsamic glazed drizzled over the top and a few grapes placed around the plate. In the middle of the plate was an old shriveled up strawberry. I actually thought it was a joke, it looked like something a child would put out and the cheese tasted like it was not kept properly and had a refrigerator taste.
        The entrees were equally disappointing, my wife ordered a crab parpadelle dish that the waitress raved about. When it came out it looked really bad. It was watery pasta with a tomato sauce dumped on top with small pieces of crab floating around in it. They did not finish the pasta off in the sauce so there was no flavor in the pasta and it was literally watery from not being drained properly, the sauce had no flavor. My dish was a little better but still pretty bad. I ordered the braciole which looked nice on the plate but was very tough and lacked flavor. Braciole should be tender and thinly sliced and this was neither.
        We turned down dessert for fear of an even bigger letdown and headed for the hills. I was really surprised at how bad it was and hope this was just an off night for them. We will not be back to find out.

        1. j
          JanR Dec 13, 2012 11:58 AM

          I can't imagine why anyone would go to a Ralph's other than the one in South Philadelphia. At least (as you pointed out daveadoff) it has some old school charm, and a long history. I wasn't surprised when the Ralph's in Ambler closed.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JanR
            cwdonald Dec 13, 2012 02:08 PM

            Having been to the one in South Philly, not sure why one would go to ANY of the Ralph's. Its old school sure.. but that doesnt make it good food.

          2. Bacchus101 Dec 13, 2012 12:13 PM

            daveadoff, sorry seem you have bitten the bullet a bit ahead of arepo. Should be interesting to compare experiences. Had been to Ralph's in South Philly just once on the request of a customer. After dinner he apologized to me for the suggestion. It was lousy! So in my book I don't know why anyone would go to Ralph's anywhere. Sinatra pictures or not!

            3 Replies
            1. re: Bacchus101
              JanR Dec 13, 2012 12:15 PM

              Agreed. I meant to say that (if you have to go to Ralph's) at least the one in South Philly has some history. The last time I ate at Ralph's was 20 years ago, and I regretted it then.

              1. re: JanR
                arepo Dec 14, 2012 05:48 AM

                Although I am commited to going Monday for my son's birthday celebration (his choice/not mine), I am not at all surprised to hear that I will more than likely be disappointed because I never actually even liked the center city one.
                My only hope is that it's pretty tough to ruin a simple spaghetti marinara and a caesar salad. That's the extent of it for me.
                The things we do to please our kids.

                1. re: arepo
                  cwdonald Dec 14, 2012 06:31 AM

                  Sharing the adventure in trying a new restaurant with your family is great, regardless of whether it is superb food or not. Kudos to your son for having that adventurous spirit. That certainly reflects great parenting!

            2. yummykimmy Dec 14, 2012 07:25 AM

              I went a few weeks ago. I do like their calamari with olives and peppers as odd as it is. I ordered the gnocchi in gorgonzola sauce with sun dried tomatoes and italian sausage. The frozen Trader Joe's product is waaay better. It is a 'pretty' space, but very pricey for disappointing food. I don't even remember what my husband had that's how memorable it was. I was at the orignial Ralph's years ago and found it to be very average but sometimes I like that for italian especially when bringing the kids. I remember the menu being very traditional italian dishes. The KOP menu seems more 'upscale' and less traditional.

              1. s
                SLynford1 Dec 17, 2012 12:55 PM

                I was there for first time this past weekend. everything was great, from food to service. it seems they've hit their stride out here at the new restaurant. granted, i'm a fan of the original, so i dont really understand all the bashing on this chain

                6 Replies
                1. re: SLynford1
                  cwdonald Dec 17, 2012 02:03 PM

                  CUrious what you had to eat. It is very helpful on a board that discusses food to have some idea what you ate, what you liked what you didnt like. Its hard for someone to guage much on.. I liked the food and got good service.

                  1. re: cwdonald
                    arepo Dec 19, 2012 05:31 AM

                    I'll weigh in after Saturday evening (reservation changed from Monday because of colds).

                    1. re: arepo
                      cwdonald Dec 19, 2012 06:17 AM

                      Looking forward to it. Hope you have a wonderful time.

                      1. re: arepo
                        Bacchus101 Dec 19, 2012 06:39 AM

                        We are tuned in. Very brave in light of the previous comments. For your families enjoyment I hope SL is correct with his unqualified praise of everything.

                        1. re: Bacchus101
                          SLynford1 Dec 22, 2012 10:14 AM

                          We had the mussels in red sauce and antipasto to start. Great starters. They also bring out a complimentary taste of their roasted peppers which is a nice touch.

                          Then we had a veal capriciosa (a classic dish) and a chicken fenneli (a new dish). Both were exceptional. We thought service was top notch for a very busy night.

                          Sorry for my delayed response to you, the utmost qualified, Bacchus.

                          1. re: SLynford1
                            Bacchus101 Dec 23, 2012 06:12 AM

                            Thanks for your response to CW's question regarding what you had to eat. A range of opinions always makes for interesting reading even if the dissenting opinion is in an extreme minority.

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