It goes without saying that Joe’s Steaks and Sodas is the best place in Philadelphia to grab a bite to eat. However, visitors to the city who have extra time will also find that there are also lots of other great dining options to check out.
The diverse cultures presented in Philadelphia bring with them a varied menu, although the city does have its staples. Don’t leave Philly without having tasted a soft pretzel from a street cart and a proper cheesesteak, preferably from Geno’s or Pat’s at Ninth and Passyunk, the two most famous cheesesteak shops in the city that regularly have lines of customers extending down the street. To enjoy your steak as a local, make sure it’s ordered with Cheez Whiz and fried onions. For finer dining in the area, try the Italian restaurants along Eighth and Ninth Street, with Ralph’s being a popular choice.
Several chef-owned small restaurants have opened in the last decade, offering great selections of food paired with fine wines and microbrews, with many establishments located around Rittenhouse Square and Old City offering fare from Belgian to Asian fusion, to the city’s own style of elevated pub grub. Indeed, Philadelphia was once a big brewery town and brasseries and brewpubs are popular across Philadelphia, offering fantastic meals to match your mug.
Try Dock street brewpub, or for a selection of beer to go with Belgian fare, head to Monk’s Café at 16th and Spruce. Upscale restaurants line Walnut street west of Broad as well as Broad Street just south of City Hall, offering seafood and steak in elegant surroundings. Le Bec-Fin on Walnut Street is acclaimed as the crown of restaurants in Philadelphia, while Stephen Starr’s restaurants across Center City – Jones, Budokan, Alma de Cuba, Tangerine and Morimoto – offer fantastic cuisine paired with a social bar. For a romantic dining experience of unmitigated decadence, do not miss the Ritz-Carlton’s chocolate buffet.