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Philadelphia: Recommended restaurants near Sofitel and Rittenhouse Square?

Philadelphia: Recommended restaurants near Sofitel and Rittenhouse Square?

Jun 7th, 2005, 09:14 AM
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Philadelphia: Recommended restaurants near Sofitel and Rittenhouse Square?

My companion and I will be staying at the Sofitel. We have been to Philadelphia more than once before, but are not familiar with the area right around the hotel, and are looking for recommendations of restaurants and bars within a short walk.

At least once, we'd like to dine on or very near to Rittenhouse Square, which appears to be a block or two southwest of the Sofitel.

We'll probably be eating each of the three meals of the day in this area at least once during our stay, and will consider all cuisines and most price ranges for something interesting and special, with the exception that we're not going to do Le Bec Fin or any other really top priced place this trip.

We have had, and will have, opportunities to sample choices in other parts of the city at other times, and don't want to have to retrieve our car or spend much time getting other places, so what we'd really like is to learn about interesting restaurants and bars of all types in the Sofitel/Rittenhouse immediate neighborhood.

We are both over 40, but are pretty age neutral, as well as eclectic, in what we enjoy. If the place does what it sets out to do well, we don't care if we're older or younger than most of the other patrons.

Also, if anyone has had room service meals at the Sofitel, or dined at their in-house restaurant Chez Collette, your comments would be very helpful. Thanks!
JBC411 is offline  
Jun 7th, 2005, 09:38 AM
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I've eaten at Chez Collette, and have attended a lot of catered events at Sofitel. Food has always been fine, not outstanding. Nice bar at Sofitel.

Near Rittenhouse Square, I suggest Brasserie Perrier (Le Bec Fin's cheaper sibling resto), Rouge for a drink/people watching, Matyson for excellent food in a byob setting (there's a decent liquor store at 19th and Chestnut), Loie for a lively night out with not-bad food.

I'm sure I'll think of others and other people will chime in, but that's a start. Oh, on the high end, in addition to Bec Fin, you'll be near Susanna Foo (fabulous upscale Asian), Striped Bass (seafood emphasis), Barclay Prime (carnivore emphasis), and Lacroix (in Rittenhouse Hotel, more of a Bec Fin-type menu and pricetag).

elle is offline  
Jun 7th, 2005, 04:26 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions, elle. How far below the Bec-Fin level are the prices at Brasserie Perrier? The hotel's the big splurge for this trip.

It would be fun, I think, for us to eat/drink outside one night right on Rittenhouse Square or with a view of it. But the only places I've read about where you can do that are Devon Seafood (not really our choice of cuisine) or Rouge and Bleu. My impression of those last two places, from what I've read, is of a heavily under 30 see-and-be-seen scene, a crush of people from early dinnertime, and a lot of "attitude" from patrons and staff. Like I said, we don't mind if most people are younger, but if these are places where we'd probably have a long, long wait for a table, and then get stuck in the back somewhere because we're over 40, that doesn't sound like fun. Have I got the picture?

Do you know of any other outside or view bars/restaurants right on Rittenhouse that are more laid back and low key?
JBC411 is offline  
Jun 10th, 2005, 04:56 AM
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ttt ellle or anyone?
JBC411 is offline  
Jun 10th, 2005, 07:37 AM
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I moved away from Philadelphia about a year ago, so my info may not be uptodate.

Le Bec-Fin's dinner menu can be found here:
Looks like you have a choice of $138 or $165 per person.
I believe their lunch menu is a much better deal.

Brasserie Perrier prices you can expect to be 2/3 of LBF. I ate there in 2002 and dinner for 2 came out to $160 total.

Rouge actually has some "older" patrons, whereas Devon is the "younger" alternative.

Loie has some outdoor seating as well, which is 1/2 block from the Square.

I also second Matyson, really great food (at least 1.5 yrs ago) and lowish key.

If you need recs for a bar, I'll have to recommend my favorite: The Black Sheep. Just 2 blocks from Sofitel.
yk is offline  
Jun 10th, 2005, 08:00 AM
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I work in the area, and can't think of any other restaurants where you can sit outside that overlook the park other than the ones mentioned. If you definitely want to soak up some atmosphere, then grab a table at Rouge. Keep in mind though that you're there for the people-watching, not the food. Bleu's is less expensive, but the food is even less decent than Rouge. You should be able to sit outside at Rouge if you go for lunch, but Fri. and Sat. nights are very "sceney", so unless you request to sit outside, you'd probably be seated inside. Definitely make reservations if you can to avoid a long wait to sit outside.

LaCroix in the Rittenhouse hotel has excellent food and overlooks the park, but comes with a high price tag as well. I second the suggestion to eat at a BYO like Matyson. Brasserie Perrier has outdoor seating (it's not right on the park though) and is much less expensive then Le Bec Fin. For more suggestions, go to www.chowhound.com.
Mcat is offline  
Jun 21st, 2005, 10:03 AM
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Brassier Perrier is around $30 for entrees. My wife and I ate there a couple of nights ago for $120 including tip (1 appetizer, 2 entrees, dessert and a glass of wine for me). I'd highly recommend it.

Other good eats in the area: Twenty Manning (hip asian fusion but not quite so extremely hip as Rogue/Bleu), Audrey Claire (low key very good BYOB). I'd second the Matyson recommendation except one time I went there it was a bit disappointing. But the first time I went there it was great.

Melangrano is a great BYO Italian place just south of Rittenhouse Square. Might be hard to get a table there unless you go early though.

You also really must try Cappaggrio Gelato at 13th & Sansom (only 6-7 blocks from your hotel). It has the best gelato I've had in the US.
msackton is offline  
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