Le Pain Quotidien

Three cheers for Philly's best new lunch spot

I hesitate to write this post, only because I’m selfish and generally like to keep a good thing to myself. But it’s not like word about Philly’s first Le Pain Quotidien isn’t going to spread, so let me just be one of the first to proclaim my love. While there are plenty of good spots to go for a healthy lunch in this town, there aren’t a lot of warm, charming, sit-down, full-service restaurants that offer many healthful options that are both filling and appealing.

But here, on a menu where calorie counts are listed next to each entree, you’ll find things like a salad with beets, smoked salmon, and just a touch of chevre, and an avocado-chickpea-alfalfa sandwich on organic whole-grain bread. Service is speedy; communal tables are surprisingly, cheerfully fun; food doesn’t kill my day’s calorie count; and they have beautiful madeleines, for when I want a splurge. It’s like lunch heaven.

1425 Walnut Street, 215-751-0570, lepainquotidien.com.