Best of Philly

Best Restaurant Revival

2021 Best Restaurant Comeback


We all cried a little when Res Ipsa Cafe closed. And then we all danced for joy five months later when its entire team — from the exec chef to the staff on the floor — went south to the Bok Building to reincarnate Irwin’s, its gorgeous rooftop restaurant, as, basically, Res Ipsa II. Same handmade pasta. Same whole fish and agrodolce chicken. Better views. Read More »

800 Mifflin Street, Philadelphia, PA Website

2021 Best Restaurant Revival

Towne House

Wanna know how to make Delco natives freak out? (No, not close their neighborhood Wawa, though that will work, too.) You take an iconic but well-past-its-prime see-and-be-seen restaurant and reopen it five years later with $15 old-fashioneds, $19 burgers, and $55 meat-and-cheese boards. But hey, it works, and this is one of the few places in Delco where you actually feel like a mook for wearing a t-shirt and a Phillies cap. Read More »

117 Veterans Square, Media, PA Website

2016 Best Restaurant Revival


Opa wasn't a great restaurant when it opened. But with a new chef in the kitchen and a new menu, the place has been revitalized, with interesting takes on classic Greek dishes and an array of options that stretches beyond souvlaki and saganaki to offer traditional barley toasts, flash-fried smelts with grilled lemon, Greek stromboli — and also, of course, souvlaki and saganaki. Read More »

1311 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA | 215-545-0170 | Website

2015 Best Revival

The Olde Bar at Bookbinder’s

Turtle soup is back at Philly's most iconic restaurant address -- but this time with a quail egg and a sidecar of sherry foam, some of the many contemporary flourishes with which Jose Garces has rejuvenated this historic bar space. Read More »

125 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA | 215-253-3777 | Website

2011 Best Revival

Khyber Pass Pub

The redone menu and dining room have given the legendary Khyber a new lease on life. Marvel at the transformation as you snack on bacon-grease popcorn from a paper bag and suck down beers from the newly expanded tap list. Read More »

56 South 2nd Street, Philadelphia, PA | 215-238-5888 | Website

2010 Best Revival

Oyster House

When Sansom Street Oyster House closed its doors two years ago, we sighed with sadness ... and relief. The eatery, run by the Mink family since 1976, had sunk into mediocrity after it was sold in 2000. Fast-forward to 2009 Sam Mink, grandson of the original Mink, took back the biz, reworked the menu, and brought light (white subway tile, floor-to-ceiling windows) to a space that had clung to its dark, wood-paneled decor. Of course, there are still oysters, and the snapper soup is still served properly, with sherry. There are lots more Philly institutions that could use such a face-lift we suggest putting a Mink in charge of them all. Read More »

1516 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA | 215-567-7683 | Website