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Out of towners with teens: what about these choices?

Coming in from Atlanta with our two teens, both reasonably sophisticated eaters. Looking for fun, not ultra-formal, great food, fun atmosphere. Based on a quick survey of the usual sources, and taking into account what's available on OpenTable at a reasonable hour, these four seem possible:

Amada
Amis
Bistrot La Minette
Osteria

Barbuzzo, Farm & Fisherman, and Vernick were booked. Staying at the Four Seasons (I think Fountain just too formal). Are we missing something great?

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  1. When is your trip? Osteria is the only one of those four I'd recommend for a visitor but if this is for this weekend your options are obviously limited.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Buckethead

      Friday Aug 2nd is the target. We're out of towners but I'm originally from Philly and know some of the "back in the day" restaurants. What about the other three make you think they are not great ideas?

      1. re: cliresga

        I just don't like them enough to recommend them to someone who is just visiting. Is this just for one dinner, on the 2nd? If so, I'd either stick with Osteria or go to Zahav as bluehensfan suggests. Fork is excellent too.

        1. re: cliresga

          But the lamb shoulder at Zahav is a killer. And even though it's Israeli it's more Mediterranean and not strange tasting.

          That said, Amada is always good enough. And you can get small plates so if something is not so hot there would be a lot of other choices.

          And don't limit yourself to Open Table. Sometimes you can call the restaurant directly and get a reservation.

        1. re: bluehensfan

          Still availability. Main issue is the Israeli cuisine: would work fine for wife and me, but kids, esp my son, might find that outside the comfort zone.

          1. re: cliresga

            Do your kids eat shish kabob and hummus? That would basic things they would have there......

            1. re: cwdonald

              Yeah, you're right, son loves lamb, and we all like hummus...OK, time for a family conference. Great ideas from all, thanks!

        2. Our teenage granddaughters loved eating with us at Parc, the French bistro on Rittenhouse Square. Terrific menu choices and great people watching. Fun place! If it's not too hot, you can eat outdoors.

          1 Reply
          1. re: sylviag

            Another nice idea, and my wife and I have fond memories of Rittenhouse Square from when we were dating many years ago. And maybe by then Philly will have cooled off!

          2. I like all you have mentioned in your OP in varying degrees. Actually the order in which you listed them would be my order of choice with a possible tie between 3&4. As noted Parc is a busy fun bistro which teens seem to enjoy for the venue and the French feel. Your comfort zone comment on Zahav is right on. Dandelion for British fare is fun and interesting. If a day for al fresco the courtyard at the Rittenhouse Tavern is quite nice with good food options and friendly service.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Bacchus101

              I would check the menu at La Minette as it may be a bit too French and be a comfort zone violation for your teens.

              1. re: Bacchus101

                I think that's in bounds--maybe not the frogs legs, but duck or scallops fine, and there's always the chicken. Hey, my daughter even likes snails.

            2. I'd recommend Noord, for something a little unusual but not so much so that two teenagers would be scared to eat. It was the first thing I thought of when I read "great food, fun atmosphere". The food is terrific, from the phenomenal bread to start, to the dessert-you-really-didn't-want-but-are-so-glad-you-ate to finish. The chef will come out and talk to you, everyone who works there is happy and will make you happy, and the whole neighborhood is so lively and energetic that that spirit gets swept right into the restaurant. Good food, good fun. In fact, now I'm thinking about heading there myself, right now! (One word of caution if you do go -- for my taste, the portions are huge. I'd plan on splitting some things unless you are really hungry.)

              4 Replies
              1. re: fava_bean

                wow, that's off the beaten path and sounds very cool, and I have never eaten at any of the Passyunk neighborhood places (when I lived there, it was a wasteland). I may have to squeeze in a second dinner somehow. Tell the rest of the family "sorry, have other obligations"

                1. re: cliresga

                  East Passyunk is a great place these days, if you choose to eat in CC you should consider taking a drive through the area, lots of new places with food from all over the map and lots of people traffic too!

                  1. re: Bigley9

                    Yeah, with all these cool suggestions, and the whole East Passyunk thing to explore, I think I'm just going to have to schedule a food trip. I'd definitely love to see EP: sounds a lot like what's happened here in ATL with areas like the Westside, and now the Edgewood areas, where many of my local favs are.

                  2. re: cliresga

                    Noord is very good, everything fava_bean said is spot on. If you go there I'd stick to the appetizers as much as possible, I love the bitterballen, liver, smorrebrod, and don't skip dessert.