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Items Tagged: Alfresco Dining
Say it five times fast: Philly’s fallen for food trucks. From Temple University’s campus to South Philly, the beyond-fun dining craze has truly boomed. If a diner craves something, chances are he or she can find it on wheels: brick-oven soppressata pizza, green-tea macaroons, gourmet mac and cheese, Spam musubi, sweet cream ice cream, pour-over coffee, along with staples such as soul food, cheesesteaks, crepes and falafels. Lunch seekers can find trucks all over the city, especially near universities, but they know to check Twitter and Facebook before they make a trip. These trucks have wheels and often use them...
Inspired by Philly Beer Week, kicking off today, the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (GPTMC) polled the newly created Philly Friends opinion panel about the city’s beer scene. The findings are mouthwatering.
Question #1: What do you think makes Philly’s beer scene so impressive? (Select all that apply.)
- Beer-centric pubs & bars – 76%
- Quality breweries – 69%
- Beer gardens – 54%
- Philly Beer Week – 43%
- Bartenders who know their stuff – 37%
- Home-brewing scene – 19%
- Other – 7%
Question #2: What is your favorite place in Philadelphia to enjoy beer on a hot summer day?...
Located just next to Independence Mall, where the country’s Founding Fathers declared liberty and built a free nation, Old City still boasts charming cobblestoned streets and plenty of 18th-century charm—along with an independent streak that’s evident in everything from its owner-operated shops to its edgy art scene. Its proximity to the Liberty Bell, Penn’s Landing and the Ben Franklin Bridge make Old City a favorite for out-of-towners as much as for the residents who call it home. People love the neighborhood for its fashionable boutiques, great restaurants, eclectic galleries and theaters and vibrant nightlife. Especially popular are First...
Spring in Philadelphia means more than baseball and cherry blossoms: It also means brand-new BYOBs, gastropubs, a biergarten, a raw bar, a noodle bar and the list goes on. Among the crowd of culinary creators are a number of second, third and beyond acts by some of the region’s hottest restaurateurs. And, as is appropriate in the warm weather, there’s news on the ice cream front too. Here’s what’s cooking in Philly this spring:
- Northern European cuisine, including smoked fish, smørrebrød, bitterballen and lots of beets, get their day in the sun thanks to Chef Joncarl Lachman’s
Graduate Hospital goes by many names (Center City South, South of South, G-Ho), which is fitting for a neighborhood that draws its personality from the people inside it: young transplants, born-and-raised neighbors, hip urban professionals, craft beer crowds and more. In recent years, the area stretching from Lombard Street to Washington Avenue and from Broad Street to Gray’s Ferry Avenue has accumulated a healthy dose of restaurants, bars, cafes, shops and markets that reflect the area’s residential and cool vibe.
Restaurants & Bars:
- Balkan Express Restaurant – This family-run bring-your-own-bottle (BYOB) spot serves up Mediterranean fare that’s both wallet-friendly
Long-considered one of the toniest neighborhoods in the city, Rittenhouse Square isn’t just an enviable address. Along its sidewalks—many of which boast seating for alfresco dining and drinking in the warm months—residents and visitors find high-end stores; locally owned boutiques; small galleries; renowned museums; cafes; beer, wine and cocktail bars; and restaurants of all kinds. And, of course, the one-block Rittenhouse Square is more popular with sunbathers, readers, families, artists and even dogs than city founder William Penn ever could have imagined. With a number of hotels also in the area, this neighborhood remains an out-of-towner favorite.
Restaurants, Bars &...
Every resident knows (and secretly loves) Will Smith’s Fresh Prince of Bel Air lyric “In West Philadelphia, born and raised … ” Not obvious from the 1990s theme song is the dynamic culture that thrives inside the large area—due to historic characteristics, large educational and research institutions and new developments and residents.
Separated from Center City by the Schuylkill River, West Philadelphia resembles a microcosm of the city itself, with a number of smaller, distinct neighborhoods inside it. Many of its attractions and events—community gardens, Ethiopian restaurants, offbeat performances and the like—were created to benefit the people living in the...
After receiving a perfect score on the Human Right Campaign’s first-ever Municipality Index, Philadelphia continues to prove that it’s still one of the best destinations for LGBT travelers looking to get their history straight and nightlife gay.
“The heart of Philly’s Gayborhood may be centered on 13th and Locust Streets, but there are plenty of LGBT-friendly reasons to visit throughout the region,” said Meryl Levitz, president and CEO, Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (GPTMC), which in 2013 will commemorate the 10th anniversary of its groundbreaking LGBT advertising campaign with the memorable tagline Philadelphia – Get Your History Straight And Your...
Pet lovers are crazy about their animal companions and spend more than $50 billion a year in the U.S. on pet services and accoutrements to prove it. For those who love to spoil their pet but hate to leave him behind while traveling, the Philadelphia region proves to be the “purr-fect” getaway. Pet-friendly hotels, restaurants and retail shops welcome visitors and their animal companions in all sections of the city and its suburbs. From canine-friendly parks to VIP (Very Important Pet) hotel programs, the Philadelphia region makes it easy for visitors to bring their furry friends along for the ride....
Like its hip neighbor Northern Liberties, Fishtown has quickly become one of the coolest sections of Philadelphia, thanks to an influx of quality restaurants, inventive bars, impressive music venues and forward-thinking art galleries. Philadelphians have found new and innovative uses for the Fishtown section of the city ever since William Penn made peace with the Lenape Indians there in what’s now Penn Treaty Park. It’s the only place in the city where, in the same evening, someone can buy a custom-made guitar, drink craft beer while playing Tetris, eat stellar Yugoslavian food and visit the world’s only pizza museum. Fishtown’s...
For years, insiders have flocked to South Philadelphia’s East Passyunk Avenue for its restaurants, particularly its red-gravy Italian spots. The neighborhood surrounding the avenue—a diagonal interruption to Philadelphia’s grid layout—has enjoyed revitalizations in recent years, creating a sort of renaissance for the thoroughfare itself. Visitors who stroll down Passyunk (pronounced pashunk by those in the know) find eclectic boutiques, coffee shops, vintage clothing stores, gastropubs, excellent Mexican and sushi fare, as well as the amazing Italian eateries that first made this street famous—not to mention the two across-the-street cheesesteak rivals, Pat’s King of Steaks and Geno’s Steaks. Generally, the area...
The green and lively Washington Square looked very different a couple hundred years ago. After city founder William Penn set the land aside for a public park, Philadelphia used it as a burial ground and as an animal pasture. Today, the park, located just steps from Independence Hall, attracts picnickers, families, sunbathers and history buffs, and the neighborhood that sprouted to the south and west has enjoyed a similar reawakening. Exciting nightlife, independently owned galleries, celebrity chefs and the famed Jewelers’ Row keep the area between 6th and 10th Streets and Chestnut and Pine Streets buzzing day and...
Getting to the diverse and historic neighborhoods of Chestnut Hill, Germantown, Mt. Airy and West Oak Lane is a cinch via SEPTA, Philadelphia’s public transportation system. Check bus and regional rail schedules at septa.org before heading off to explore these vibrant enclaves in the northwest section of the city.
Chestnut Hill (via the Chestnut Hill East/West train lines or the #23 Bus):
With a higher elevation than the rest of the city, Chestnut Hill was once a vacation spot for those who wanted to escape the summer heat of the lower-lying parts of the city. Today, the neighborhood’s eclectic
Once considered Philadelphia’s favorite up-and-coming neighborhood, Northern Liberties has officially arrived, evidenced by the international restaurants, respected gastropubs and trendy boutiques—all this while maintaining the artistic vibe that made it so cool in the first place. The warehouses that populate the former manufacturing district found new life as condos, galleries, stores and restaurants, and along with newly designed buildings, the area enjoys a pleasant mix of older functional and modern design. Two shopping/dining/art/entertainment plazas helped make Northern Liberties an accessible and thriving area: Liberties Walk and The Piazza at Schmidts.
The neighborhood lies north of Old City, and its borders...
Long known as the edgiest street in Philadelphia, South Street welcomes more than just hippies these days. Shoppers searching for a statement-making look, visitors hungry for a real Philly cheesesteak and music lovers who want to catch an up-and-coming band head to the storied boulevard. Add ethnically diverse restaurants, bars that keep the party going long after dessert and galleries and performance spaces, South Street has evolved into the place where everyone meets. Over the past decade, the development of the east side of South Street spread west of Broad Street, but the traditional definition of the district (depending who...
With spring about to spring, diners are eager to enjoy their meals alfresco, and fortunately, Philadelphia and The Countryside® is flourishing with plenty of green-minded eateries. Whether it’s dinner in an urban courtyard, brunch in an antique greenhouse or beer and pizza on a green roof, there’s an abundance of options for taking in the local flora. Here’s a look at just a few of the region’s restaurants that boast flower power:
- The enclosed veranda at The Brick Hotel’s Restaurant overlooks lush, well-tended flower gardens, which are a visual complement to the New American cuisine like line-caught salmon over saffron
Just near the renowned institutions that line the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia’s Fairmount and Spring Garden neighborhoods are often lumped together and dubbed the “Art Museum area,” but the personalities of these laid-back districts separate them from nearby Center City.
Fairmount easily stands on its own as a destination in Philadelphia. Despite its proximity to downtown, the residential neighborhood is considered a sort of urban suburb, thanks to the friendly residents and atmosphere. What to do here? Eat, drink and tour the former prison-turned-attraction. Wedged between the cultural powerhouses of the Parkway and the better-known Fairmount, Spring Garden distinguishes itself...
When choosing a restaurant in Historic Philadelphia, the key word is choice. In fact, there are so many restaurants, cafes and bistros that discerning diners could eat out all 108 days of summer without ever hitting the same spot twice. After a long day of touring, hungry visitors can take an adventurous turn by sampling Chifa’s Latin/Asian menu, dine in elegance at Union Trust Steak House or join the bring-your-own-bottle (BYOB) revolution at longtime favorite Chloe. Here are just a few places where diners can please their palates:
Asian & South Asian:
- Aqua – Those in the know order
With the annual Philadelphia International Flower Show (March 6-13, 2011) and the first-ever Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts (April 7-May 1, 2011) both themed around Paris this year, Philadelphia continues its longstanding love affair with all things French. While in town for these not-to-be-missed events, visitors can inspire their inner Francophile by exploring the region’s many cultural, gastronomic, architectural and fashion French connections.
Here’s how to explore the City of Lights right here in the City of Brotherly Love:
- Benjamin Franklin Parkway – Paul Philippe Cret (1876-1945), an émigré from Lyon, planned this wide avenue lined
Philadelphia and The Countryside® continues to build its reputation as a not-to-be-missed foodie town, and the city's diverse and multifaceted restaurant scene is doing its part to give discerning diners a taste of the world. It's in Philadelphia that authentic Burmese ginger salads, Brazilian barbecue and traditional Irish breakfasts are as accessible as Israeli eggplant sandwiches and Korean kimchi. The following is just a sampling of the region's global smorgasbord:
- The city's premminent French restaurant, Georges Perrier’s Le Bec-Fin is consistently lauded for its superior dining experience. These days the menu has a contemporary twist (Jonah crab