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Help! Great Resto in 'burbs

  • m

Just learned that rather than going into the city for a friend's bday, we need to find a great place not too far from Radnor (20 min. drive). Since we eat right around there all the time, want to rule out the usual suspects (Blackfish, Flemings, Silverspoon Cafe, Nectar). Was going to suggest Alba but naturally we're going on a Sunday evening and they're closed that day. And Becca's is closed, period.

Any ideas? I stumbled upon Maijorica but don't know if that's birthday-worthy. Is it good? Noisy? I've got a bit of time to choose a place (bday is early August) but would prefer to have things settled SAP. Oh, and we're going to be five adults.

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  1. Bar Lucca in Conshy

    Cantina Feliz in Ft Washington

    Radice in Blue Bell

    9 Replies
    1. re: UncleMorty

      Thanks, UM. Will look into all three.

      1. re: UncleMorty

        +1 for Bar Lucca. Really well executed food with small plates to share, interesting beer and wine list. Noise level can be a little high depending on the time of night.

        Might also recommend Fayette St Grill, which has a fixed menu that is dynamite, is BYO, but also suffers from a high noise level.

        1. re: UncleMorty

          Cantina Feliz was LOUD the two times we ate there. like - you can barely hear the waiter loud.

          Southern Cross Kitchen in Conshy is very good, we've had some great meals there.

          1. re: jujuthomas

            Yep, I've been to Cantina Feliz just once (for the benefit of folks who didn't want to go into town) and thought it was a pretty mediocre, suburbia-grade effort. Good margaritas, really good guac, pretty weak food, passable service. Quite loud.

            1. re: SteveK

              they do have an amazing sundae for dessert - or did last time we were there - ah yes. The "domingo" sundae - a brownie sundae with peanut caramel popcorn and churro ice cream. a-mazing. but if that's the most memorable part of my meal...

              1. re: SteveK

                Just could not pass up a response to this post
                Have eaten many many times at Cantina Feliz
                The food is excellent certainly as good as any
                modern Mexican restaurant in Philly
                You make is sound as if this is a chain mexican
                restaurant which it is most certainly not.
                Your review does not jive at all with anything we have found at Cantina.
                The service is always good
                As far as the volume no louder than any other busy

              2. re: jujuthomas

                I wouldn't recommend Southern Cross. We really wanted to love it, but have given up after three tries. It's a cute space, but in our opinion (four of us last time), the food is sub par.

                1. re: vicarious

                  I'd have to disagree on Southern Cross. I've been there on several occasions and the food has never disappointed us. Particulary the fried pickles, the short rib grilled cheese, the Cross burger, the spicy mac n cheese. Drinks are generally good, happy hour specials are awesome, The service, at times, has been spotty, but overall I think it's a nice change of pace, based on the cuisine.

                  1. re: mkertello

                    we've been 3 or 4 times, the food has always been great.

            2. We had visited the White Dog this weekend and again was most please with the venue, the food and the service. The only negative, which we have noticed frequently is that for some unknown reason certain hostesses have way too much attitude. Could be a great place for a bday with a number of interesting rooms, outdoor dining and a lively bar.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Bacchus101

                This crowd's been to White Dog a number of times which rules it out. Never noticed a service issue but have found the food to be uneven at times. Still, a good place to have a nice meal. Thanks, B.

                1. re: Misha

                  We also have never had an issue with the service. The chronic issue we have had is the front desk hostess either with her nose in the air or not looking up from her reservations book to give a considerate welcome. We like the servers who know their menu and provide good service.

              2. Heirloom (byob) in Chestnut Hill.

                1. We tried Majolica recently and liked it a lot; for me it would be birthday worthy, Higher end options would be Savona or Paramour. Much as I hate the name, dinner on the porch at Paramour last summer was lovely. It's probably one of your "usual suspects," but dinner on the patio at 333 Belrose is also nice.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: vicarious

                    Yep. Both Paramour and Belrose are places I've gone to for business dinners. If we swing a larger net (say, Blue Bell, Narberth, Collegeville) would that uh, net other options?

                    1. re: Misha

                      Ambler has a number of options -
                      From the Boot
                      Lucky Well
                      Trax Cafe

                      dang there's a Mediterranean one that's escaping me at the moment...

                  2. How about Han Dynasty in Royersford which is only about 25 minutes from Radnor.

                    1. Here are a couple of winners to consider.
                      Right in Radnor is Susannah Foo's if you like Asian food but somehow I can't believe you've not already been there/done that.
                      Two other favorites are very nearby.
                      The first is in Bryn Mawr -- Sola, and a BYOB.
                      The second is Spring Mill Café in Conshohocken, also a BYOB
                      Both are excellent.
                      And then of course there is always the ever popular Yangming in Rosemont which is always busy, especially on Sunday nights.
                      If you want to go as far as Bala-Cynwyd, Pescatore is also an excellent choice and has some really neat prix fixe specials running for the summer months and is also a BYOB.
                      Bon appetit!

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: arepo

                        +1 for Spring Mill Cafe'
                        one of my all time favorites!

                        1. re: cgarner

                          Just had an average meal at Spring Mill Cafe -- everything was edible but not interesting. Except the Daffodil Cake, which is always fresh and not too sweet.

                          1. re: Dempsey

                            Love the Daffodil cake. Don't remember loving anything else much. I've only been to lunches and brunches there, however. A friend who has taken his a French-speaking uncle there several times. (because said uncle lives nearby and enjoys chatting with the owner), claims the menu is so so.

                            1. re: JanR

                              really? wow! It's been just over a year since I've had dinner there, the lamb was tender, perfectly cooked succulent the chicken liver pate for appetizer was excellent... (it's my favorite)
                              creme brulee, perfect cup of coffee

                      2. Two great places right in Wayne: White Dog Cafe and Teresa's.

                        1. Cerise is a nice French-inspired BYOB a couple of miles down 30 in Bryn Mawr.

                          1. Fraschetta, a byob in Bryn Mawr. Roman inspired cuisine from the chef/owner of Melograno.

                            1. I definitely second the nomination of Sola in Bryn Mawr. It was open on Sundays and is an excellent BYOB, although I have to admit to not being there in awhile. To me it is a celebratory kind of place. Another good choice that has also been mentioned and is also a BYOB is the Spring Mill Cafe. We were there for Brunch on Father's Day and had a lovely time. For beef eaters and probably more expensive since neither is a BYOB, I recommend Sullivans in Radnor and Capitol Grille in King of Prussia.

                              1. If you'd rather not stay in the Radnor environs because you say you've already been to "the usual suspects", a 20 minute drive to charming Chestnut Hill will get you a really fine Italian restaurant called Stella Sera and the unique with a Southern bent Heirloom right nearby. Both are excellent and worth the 20 minute drive.