Steakhouses in Philadelphia: The Ultimate Guide
Looking for a great steak, or maybe an all-you-can-eat meat feast? Here's our list of the best places to eat steak in Philadelphia right now.
Not too long ago, the steakhouse was the only American restaurant that mattered.
In most towns, in most cities, there was the steakhouse — the place where you went for your anniversary, to celebrate that big promotion — and then there was everywhere else. Steakhouse was synonymous with fine dining, class, and expense. They were the original destination restaurants.
Nowadays? Not so much.
American cities are full of destination restaurants now, and almost none of them are traditional steakhouses. Our current obsession with technique, unusual ingredients, and flashy presentations do no favors to the steakhouse.
There, grilling is the only technique that matters, the ingredient list (meat, potatoes, fire, maybe some creamed spinach) remains largely unchanged from 50 years ago, and the ideal plate is empty — save for one bone-in ribeye, medium-rare.
There’s still something admirable about a great steakhouse, something comforting in its white-tablecloth predictability, luxe appointments, and dedication to a single style. Something reassuring about a menu that you can read with your eyes closed. And let’s be honest: there are times when you’ve got a hunger that nothing but a thick-cut steak, perfectly cooked, will satisfy.
So when that hunger comes over you, this list is as far as you need to look. Whether you’re craving something from one of Philly’s classic steakhouses, something from the new guard, or a little adventure with a restaurant more in the Brazilian/Argentine churrascaria mode, we’ve got you covered.
The Steakhouses You Must Try First
Barclay Prime, Rittenhouse Square
For years, Barclay Prime has been the apex of Philly’s steakhouses. The word “swank” was invented to describe places like this, with their crystal chandeliers, armchair seating, and polished wood. Yeah, you can get Petrossian caviar or a $120 wagyu cheesesteak with foie gras and truffled Cheez Whiz. But no one would care about any of it if not for the fact that the steaks are excellent, the butter-poached lobster an expense account extravagance at $85, and the tater tots some of the best in town.
237 South 18th Street
Butcher & Singer, Center City
Stephen Starr has a well known penchant for trading on restaurant nostalgia. But here, in the former home of Striped Bass, he goes all out with a frozen-in-time aria to steakhouses past. An 18-ounce Delmonico is almost 50 bucks before you Oscar it up with lump crab, asparagus, and bearnaise sauce, but if you’re looking for that old-school pomp and slightly faded luxury that a great steakhouse can offer, it’s totally worth it.
1500 Walnut Street
The Prime Rib, Rittenhouse Square
I didn’t even know there were any restaurants left that served crab imperial anymore. But the Prime Rib does. Its signature black-on-black dining room makes everything from the white tablecloths to the ranks of glassware sparkle, and the menu offers everything from chicken piccata and soft shells (in season) to a full cut, 24-ounce roasted prime rib.
1701 Locust Street
Urban Farmer, Logan Square
The best trick they pull at this modern re-interpretation of a classic Midwestern steakhouse is to make the menu interesting again by treating their steaks like what they are: American charcuterie. Every piece of meat is listed by cut, sure, but also by point of origin, feed and finish. There’s even a side-by-side tasting of three different six-ounce New York strips which allows you to taste the differences that geography and feeding practices can make.
1850 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Library II, Voorhees
So often, the difference between a high-end steakhouse and a neighborhood steakhouse is the presence of a salad bar. And at Library II, the salad bar is included with every steak dinner.
306 Route 73, Voorhees, NJ
The Pub, Pennsauken
Speaking of salad bars, let’s take a minute to talk fondly of The Pub. This place has been an institution in South Jersey for more than 50 years. It’s a throwback to those days when every town had its own place for reasonably-priced steaks and powerful cocktails, and it’s never tried to be anything else. The service is friendly, and every dinner comes with salad, potato, and bread. And the menu is huge, with everything from snapper soup and potato skins to chicken parm, fried shrimp, vegetable kabobs, and steaks (natch) priced in the $30-$40 range.
7600 Kaighns Avenue, Pennsauken, NJ
The Saloon, Queen Village
Okay, so it’s not really a steakhouse so much as an Italian restaurant with a solid menu of steaks. But we’re counting it because the Saloon is undeniably a classic, because the steaks are good, and because we don’t know anyone who doesn’t have some story of a family celebration at this storied address.
750 South 7th Street
The Palm, Center City
There are some people out there who love the Palm. And there are some people who do not. No one who cares about steakhouses is really ambivalent. Our location recently went through a big renovation, so if you haven’t been recently, maybe go check it out and see which side of the line you come down on now.
200 South Broad Street
Del Frisco’s, Center City
This is probably Philly’s most luxe steakhouse. Housed in the old Packard Building with its towering columns and big windows covered in flowing drapes, Del Frisco’s is the archetypal power steakhouse — a place to see and be seen over big plates of meat.
1426 Chestnut Street
Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse, Radnor
Part of a massive chain with locations all over the country, Fleming’s still manages to be unique in two ways. First, it isn’t right in the middle of Center City. And second, it bridges a gap between the classic, intimidating, monolithic, high-dollar steakhouse and our more modern restaurant moment. It’s a less serious place with an interesting spread of appetizers (tuna poke, house-made burrata) and sides and a more casual vibe in the dining room. But the steaks are still excellent, which is really why Fleming’s makes this list.
555 Lancaster Avenue, Radnor
Capital Grille, Center City
Capital Grille is another power steakhouse — another heavy and serious place where just being there makes you feel important. But Capital Grille is also an excellent steakhouse, where every little detail — from the weight of the steak knives to the padding on the tables — has been calculated to make for a flawless dining experience. The steaks run in the $50 range, making it less pricey than some of the other powerhouse names, which also tends to attract a slightly younger crowd of movers and shakers, particularly at the bar.
1338 Chestnut Street
Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse, Center City
Credit where it’s due, Davio’s is a Philadelphia original. It is a hybrid — a fancy steakhouse stuck inside a Northern Italian restaurant — but it comes with a great view, a talented kitchen, and a sense of humor (which is rare in the steakhouse world). Davio’s does all kinds of weird things: it’s famous for its cheesesteak spring rolls, does take-out, offers all kinds of odd promotions. But it braces all that with great steaks, a lovely bar and lounge, and a nice view from its elevated location.
111 South 17th Street
Fogo De Chao, Center City
This is probably the most recognizable of the upscale Brazilian-style steakhouse. It’s an all-you-can-eat kind of deal here, and they’ll keep bringing meat (presented on giant swords) to the table until you cry uncle. There’s also a massive salad bar for those of you who feel weird about making a meal out of nothing but nine different kinds of protein.
1337 Chestnut Street
Malbec Argentine Steakhouse, Headhouse Square
Argentine cuisine is something that Philly hasn’t yet really embraced. And I get it: it’s a mish-mash of a lot of different other cuisines, all mixed up with a whole lot of grilled meats and potatoes. But really, shouldn’t we love that kind of thing here? Malbec is a good place to get a taste of Argentina with all the Philadelphia steakhouse trappings — including a pasta menu, charcuterie plate, and shrimp cocktail.
400 South 2nd Street
Chima, Center City
Another big, Brazilian-style steakhouse serving 15 different cuts of meat, salad bar, and sides, all for one price (which is less than you’d pay at most other traditional steakhouses on this list). Pro tip: Lê from Hop Sing Laundromat designed three of the cocktails at the bar — just because he really likes the place.
1901 JFK Boulevard
Broncos Brazilian Steakhouse, Northeast Philly
A nice, modern spot for Brazilian spit-cooked meats. The service is friendly, the room is bright and full of wood, and the sides are all served family-style from a hot table next to the salad bar, which is a really nice touch.
7634 Castor Avenue
O Rei Da Picanha, Northeast Philly
Right down the street from Broncos, O Rei Da Picanha is a neighborhood Brazilian steakhouse that also does sandwiches, pizza, fresh juices, Brazilian sausages, lots of seafood, fish cakes, barbecue, and just about everything else you can imagine.
7534 Castor Avenue
Taste of Brazil, Northeast Philly
Taste of Brazil is part of a small, four-location chain that’s trying to bring authentic Brazilian cuisine to the Northeast. They do the traditional array of meats, but they also serve vegetarian dishes and plenty of seafood. The sides and salad offer everything from hearts of palm and salpicao to fresh fruits, greens, and an avocado salad that sounds perfect for a hot night.
6222 Bustleton Avenue
Rio Brazilian Steak Truck, University City
Everything you love about churrasco, only on wheels. The Rio truck does a short menu of Brazilian-style roasted meats, done as sandwiches, and occasionally offers one-offs like tacos, salads, and chicken stroganoff.
1 North 34th Street