In this Day-Glo-hued funhouse lined with Mexican wrestling masks, Jose Garces shows that over-the-top decor and upscale Mexican food can coexist.
How to pick between Stephen Starr’s dueling steakhouses? A chef change at Barclay Prime has stripped it of its magic, but not to worry: The meaty mojo has migrated over to Butcher’s splendid supper-club interior.
Whether you come for the color-shifting booths or Morimoto-san’s ornate omakase tasting menus, this is the closest our dining scene gets to Fantasia.
Jose Garces’s most tightly focused concept – small plates, San Sebastian-style – yields the most vivid and surprising flavors going in this Iron Chef’s kingdom.
Michael Solomonov’s grand Israeli experiment keeps us coming back again and again, to see just how he’ll mix the comforting (a toad-in-the-hole twist made with sablefish on yolk-soaked challah) with plucky ingenuity (raw lamb with whipped tahini).
This very model of a modern South Philly BYOB, owned by a trio of Le Bec and Lacroix alums, has become a force of nouveau deliciousness via a seasonal, sustainable credo and a charming French formality.
The menu sounds middle-of-the-American-road, but chef David Katz flawlessly injects just enough twists – grits soufflé here, parsley-caper relish there – to make his affordable dishes as compelling as they are comforting.
At this NoLibs BYOB, chef David Gilberg serves up the rustic, family-style Portuguese fare he learned from wife Carla Gonçalves’s mother.
With cooking as spicy as owner Han Chiang’s hilariously blunt banter, this Szechuan BYOB will numb your tongue, shock your ears and blow your mind.
The six best seats in Marc Vetri’s most convivial spot are at the countertop overlooking the kitchen, where star chef Brad Spence prepares a small-plates parade of rustic trattoria fare.
Chef-owner Marcie Turney and partner Valerie Safran have hit the sweet spot here, with decor (sophisticated farmhouse), food (lip-smacking Mediterranean small plates) and value (prices are just right).
It’s not reinventing the wheel, because it is the wheel. In an era when so few proper fine-dining restaurants are opening (or staying open), the Fountain sets an example with spectacular food and spectacular service.
Everyone loves a comeback, and the return of Sansom Street’s Oyster House, under its original owners, the Mink family, is a knockout. Neither small platery nor gastropub nor BYOB, it’s one of the few new restaurants in our city that are refreshingly gimmick-free.
Mike Stollenwerk’s Little Fish sequel gives him room to craft even bigger and more baroque flavors around his namesake ingredient. Who says you can’t pair tuna with veal, or monkfish with lamb shank?
There’s still so much to love about Jeff Michaud’s cooking at this evergreen Italian outpost on North Broad – Vetri-quality pastas, perfect pizzas, and his rare ability to handle both savory and sweet dishes with aplomb.
Creative plates, flawless execution and virtually telepathic service continue to make this lofty Rittenhouse perch worth visiting for more than just its famous brunch.
Polished service, chef-owner Peter Woolsey’s superior food and a dreamy, authentically Parisian atmosphere make this hidden Queen Village spot a keeper.
Pierre Calmels’s cooking is as heartfelt as his wife Charlotte’s warm hospitality at this very tiny, very Gallic BYOB. It’s no wonder you hear French spoken at half the tables some nights.
As Marc Vetri and Jeff Benjamin continue to expand their Italian-restaurant empire, their original 13-year-old fine-dining outpost isn’t suffering. In fact, it’s getting even better.
Yes, it’s a BYOB. And yes, it’s in Conshy. But even if you consider those to be inconveniences, Chip Roman’s restaurant is flat-out fantastic. And though it’s three years old, it’s the perfect restaurant of the moment.