Food

8 Women-Owned Fast Casual Restaurants in Philly

Our women-run quick-serve eateries take the crown.


women-owned fast casual

Neighborhood Ramen is one of Philly’s spectacular woman-run quick serve restaurants. Photograph by Maddy Sweitzer-Lammé

This article is one part of our look at how women are reshaping Philly’s food scene. Read more here.

El Merkury

Sofia Deleon brought her Guatemalan roots to an airy space where Central American crowd-pleasers like taquitos, pupusas and tostadas are served with the same ease and speed as Chipotle burritos, but are (conservatively) 1,000 times better. Order this: Pork pupusas and one of every churro on offer. 2104 Chestnut Street, Rittenhouse

DaMò Pasta Lab

Monica Fenocchio and her husband, Danilo D’Eugenio, came to Philly by way of Rome, where they (very obviously) learned their pasta-making skills. Order this: Casarecce al pesto with a drizzle of Calabrian chili oil. 105 South 12th Street, Midtown Village

Poi Dog

You know how there’s a poke restaurant on every corner now? They’re poke poseurs. For the real-deal, straight-from-Hawaii stuff, you’ve gotta go to Kiki Aranita’s quick-serve for plate lunches, Spam musubi and poke by the pound. Order this: Uh … poke. Tuna or salmon. Or both. 100.5 South 21st Street, Rittenhouse

Rowhouse Grocery

Jen Holman, Allie Hauptman and Travis Weissman have filled a hole in their neighborhood with their mini market serving excellent sandwiches, baked goods, and lots of vegan and vegetarian lunch options to a community that long needed that kind of love. Order this: Pulla — Finnish sweet cardamom pastries. 1713 McKean Street, Point Breeze

Baology

Taiwanese street food made with all the care and craft of a full-scale restaurant (scratch-made, responsibly sourced) but set in a space with touchscreen ordering and counter service. In a perfect world, we’ll see owner Judy Ni open 50 more Baologys by 2029. Order this: The pot stickers are unbeatable, but we’re partial to the ruen bings — sweet and salty and crunchy Taiwanese wraps. 1829 JFK Boulevard, Center City

Mom Mom’s Kitchen

Three words: Midnight pierogi window. Opening on South Street soon, courtesy of Kaitlin Wines and co-owner Ryan Elmore, who have an original location in the Northeast. Order this: Two of every pierogi. Will open at 1505 South Street, Grad Hospital

Neighborhood Ramen

Find Lindsay Steigerwald taking orders, clearing tables, prepping, cooking arguably the best ramen in all of Philly, and doing just about everything there is to do at Neighborhood Ramen, which she runs alongside her partner, Jesse Pryor. Order this: Tantan ramen, extra spicy. 617 South 3rd Street, Queen Village

Published as part of the “Women Are the Future of Philly’s Food Scene” feature in the January 2020 issue of Philadelphia magazine.