These homemade Mexican stews have always been tough to find in Philly, even in our city’s deepest Mexican enclaves. Then came Roman Figueroa and Raquel Rodriguez’s little kitchen on South 7th, where everything is deliciously authentic, from the soulful pork ribs to the tortillas you’ll use to eat them. 1629 South 7th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19148, guisados-don-roman.business.site.
The menu is mostly fried sea creatures, the bar serves tropical drinks, the dining room is frequented by chefs, bartenders, and Philly’s most fantastic night owls, and it’s open till 3 a.m. on weekends. 134 North 10th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107, tailakeseafoodrest.com.
Okay, it’s a little weird that this spa is on the backside of a medical center. But once you throw on a robe, kick back in the relaxation lounge, and wait for your anti-aging facial or hot stone massage, you won’t give two you-know-whats where you are. All you’ll feel is bliss. And – ready for this? – they’ll even arrange for free child care at the attached fitness facility while you relax. 401 Young Avenue, Moorestown, NJ 08057, virtua.org/services/virtu.
The longest-running drag show in Philly is still fresh (thanks to a rotating cast of Philly favorites and up-and-comers), still under the direction of show founder and iconic hostess Miss Lisa Lisa – and still the best $8 you can spend on a Thursday night. 1509 South Street, Philadelphia, PA 19146, bobandbarbaras.com.
The vintage goods in this Kennett Square shop form a well-curated collection — a Wynona Rider ’90s flowered dress, a Working Girl ’80s white blouse, a Michelle Pfeiffer puff-sleeve jumpsuit from the ’70s — that says, “I’m cultured and deep but never over-the-top.” 210 South Mill Road, suite 103, Kennett Square, PA 19348, shop-textile.com.
Twenty thousand retweets. Sixty thousand likes. It was one simple, unassuming tweet from Daniela Morales about her family’s brand-new South Philly taqueria that started it all, but after that? It was all about the service, the welcoming vibe, the bright, comfortable dining room, and, of course, the food: hand-pressed tortillas, killer tacos al pastor, rolled tacos stuffed with potatoes, enchiladas Suizas that you’ll dream about long after they’re gone. True, the gods of social media are fickle and often bestow the boon of virality on the shallow and undeserving. But this time? This time, they got it absolutely right. 1429 Jackson Street, Philadelphia, PA 19145, taqueriamorales.com.
When the PLCB temporarily closed all its stores, Philly wine shops stayed open and kept us drinking and drunk during the apocalypse. And they deserve all the attention in the world. 920 South 9th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147, dibruno.com/9th-street-bottle-shop.
Chris Kearse kicks a whole lot of ass for a whole lot of reasons, but one of the best things about him is the deep iconoclastic streak that made him close his dream restaurant — Will BYOB — and follow his muse, opening a perfectly realized modern French bistro at a time in Philly’s food history when fine dining, French influences and modernism were all on the wrong side of the curve. What’s more, he nailed it, serving things as simple as a perfect crab omelet, roasted duck with Bing cherries, and ham hock beignet with honey mustard — and making them all unforgettable showstoppers. Not every restaurant in Philly is going to survive 2020, but we’re lighting a candle for Forsythia. 233 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106, forsythiaphilly.com.
Luna Maye’s web-based “Sound Lab” is a multi-sensory treat assembled by a killer array of Philly talent. Featuring harp accompaniment from local musician Elizabeth Steiner (and visually brought to life by photog Max Grudzinski and stylist Liz Barella), the sound meditation sessions range in mood from “Love + Longing” to “Focus + Motivation.” They’ll have you meditating yourself to a state of mind far away from your living room couch. lunamaye.com/the-sound-lab.
Philly’s female-health-focused wellness spaces are absolutely popping off. See the full write up at Womens' Wellness Spaces. 120 Valley Green Lane, King of Prussia, PA 19406, mainlinehealth.org/locations/main-line-health-king-of-prussia/womens-specialty-center.
iHeartRadio picked up this weekly cast by Philadelphians John Morrison and Josh Leidy. In addition to talking newcomers, little-known artists and deep cuts in the rap and hip-hop worlds, Morrison and Leidy focus on topics such as misogyny and transphobia, partisan politics, gentrification and Black Lives Matter. seriousrapshit.com.
Take your dull, beat-up shoes, bags, belts and briefcases to his men's footwear shop, and they'll restore and repaint the leather by hand. Note: They do briefcases and belts, too. 25 South 19th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103, facebook.com/Toboxshoes.
Considering it quietly opened its doors six months ago, you'd never know this eyewear boutique was part of the Eyechic consortium that's amassed 87K followers on Instagram — and maybe it's better that way. With an ultra-modern interior and a curated collection of high-end lenses from the likes of Miu Miu and Linda Farrow, the shop remains surprisingly under-the-radar. 2003 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103, eyechic.com.
Every day, more than 6,000 followers race to claim the vintage home goods this South Street vintage shop posts on its Instagram feed. The items range from antique treasures to kitschy curiosities (rattan peacock chairs, velvet paintings and Victorian settees have all cropped up), and all are priced to sell, well, instantly 508 South Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147, retrospectvintage215.com.