2009 Philly Mag 50 Methodology

For this list, we defined “restaurant” as a sit-down, full-service establishment. Our reviewers ate hundreds of meals during multiple visits to almost 200 restaurants (and revisited all of the spots on last year’s Philly Mag 50), filling out score sheets for each based on their experiences. The score sheet, which has 100 possible total points, creates an even playing field by awarding points based on both minutiae and overarching mission, and examines a restaurant’s food, service and vibe. Its final question carries more weight because we believe it’s the true basis on which we can compare such a wide variety of places: Does this restaurant fulfill its promise?