Philly – 5 of my top 5s

I’ve been asked what my favourite places to eat in Philly are. Where to start??

Following up from my “Ten of the old & new” post on Philly (link), after having lived in Philly for roughly 12 months all up (3 semesters), I’ve come up with 5 of my Top 5 lists. Thanks to Claire for her input – was great to cross-check with a fellow foodie 🙂



1. Sabrina’s: remains an all-time favourite. Fave dish is the heuvos rancheros (just amazing and in my opinion, the best in Philly) and stuffed challah french toast (so decadent – I would share this between two people actually). Go early to avoid the massive wait time.

2. Parc: absolutely love the ambience, albeit a bit pricey, my favourite thing to do is sit outside in the summer – feels like you’re in Paris somewhere rather than Philly 🙂 Fave dish is the eggs benedict, and love their bread basket also 🙂

3. Green Eggs Cafe: I love Green Eggs Cafe for the variety in its savoury dishes, particularly with a great southern influence. Faves are the red velvet pancakes (order one for the table to share) and the shrimp & grits benedict

4. Bar Ferdinand: how can you not like a place with $3 bloody mary’s and mimosas?? That’s not the only thing good about this place – love their date & bacon empanadas and their churros. Awesome for a boozy brunch!

5. Lemon Hill: a new place near the Art Museum, the brown sugar french toast is just delicious – the best french toast I’ve ever had 🙂

Other mentions: Cafe Lift – has a great heuvos rancheros (Claire thinks it’s the best in Philly) and Creperie Beaumonde – for their yummy crepes and mimosas

Takeaway / Casual Dining

1. Vic’s: my comfort food – yes, sushi 🙂 When I get back to Philly from a trip somewhere, the first thing I do is order some Vic’s. I love their 3 roll special (spicy tuna, spicy salmon & philadelphia roll) and their tuna dumpling.

2. Almaz Cafe: I absolutely love Almaz Cafe – it’s a small Ethiopian restaurant on 20th Street, love to sit outside and have their doro tibs and vegetarian platter with the mango smoothie. So simple, yet so so good!

3. Shake Shack: looooove the shroom burger 🙂 Never really got round to ordering anything else…!

4. Penang: Philly doesn’t have the best Asian food, so out of the ones there are, Penang is quite good. Love their roti canai 🙂

5. El Rey: I love this place – you can walk in anytime and get a table and eat some delicious food! Fave is the Sopa de Tortilla – the soup with pork. Sooo good! 🙂

Other mentions: Hip City Veg – for their really fresh and light food (love their arugula taco salad, ziggy burger and green lemonade), Kabobeesh – for some really tasty kebabs and biryani


1. Tinto: my absolute favourite, love their white wine sangria, gazpacho, wild mushrooms and diver scallops. Sad I never made it for their Sunday brunch…

2. Chifa: I wouldn’t have thought a combination of Chinese and Peruvian would work, but this place proved me wrong. Love the food here, favourites are the Peruvian ceviche, the pork belly bao buns and yuca fries

3. Han Dynasty: A Philly institution, my faves are the dan dan noodles, cumin style lamb and the kung pao chicken

4. Jamonera: a new tapas place, really love it – love the paella and the wine selection is also something to write home about!

5. Talula’s Garden: love love Talula’s – the ingredients are so fresh. My favourite is the cheese board! Their menu changes regularly so dont have one main course I love from there.

Other mentions: Alma de Cuba – their heavenly bread rolls, fish tacos, ceviche and chocolate cigar, Oyster House – delish oysters and their signature lobster roll, Porcini – such a great homestyle, Italian restaurant – love their scallops and canneloni, Pumpkin – great fresh ingredients with a changing menu, and Sampan – loove the soy glazed Chilean sea bass. I should’ve just made this list a top 10 eh?


1. One Tippling Place: this became my favourite bar in Philly – love their Penicillin 🙂

2. Dandelion: LOVE this pub – great food and drinks. Drinks – love their Scotch Honeysuckle and their Pimms Cup; Food – the devilled eggs and house made ricotta with sourdough

3. Tria: my fave wine bar in Philly – love their pinot noir and malbec with their caremelised onion bruschetta and cheese plate 🙂

4. Ranstead Room: a speakeasy at the back of El Rey, has some great drinks – I usually get the bartender’s choice.

5. Farmers Cabinet: loooove their hot toddy in winter, has a great ambience with a live band playing on Friday nights

Other mentions: Smith’s which has a great selection of beer, and happy hour specials at Alma de Cuba for their suave mojito and Tinto for their white wine sangria

Lunch around campus

1. Distrito: love their lunch special – an appetizer, entree and drink for $15. Love their shrimp ceviche and fish tacos.

2. Hummus: the chicken shewarma is amazing.

3. Pod: loooove the Chilean sea bass with brown rice.

4. Sweet Green: how could salads be so good? A bit pricey at $10 for a salad, but they have a really great range – love their seasonal monthly specials. My fave is anything with goat cheese in it 🙂

5. New York Gyro: amazing chicken rice.

And other mentions: Yogorino for the best fro-yo ever and Elixir, my fave coffee shop in Philly!

Enjoy 🙂


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