The Best Restaurants Near Rittenhouse Square

The 18 best places to eat around Rittenhouse.
This is the dining room at Dizengoff.

photo credit: GAB BONGHI

Rittenhouse Square is one of those parts of the city that always takes us back in time. The late 17th-century park full of statues and old-fashioned lamps makes us think we’re walking through the set of the Pride And Prejudice, only with a lot more animal rights activists. The flashback feeling doesn’t extend everywhere in the neighborhood, especially when it comes to nearby restaurants. From casual weeknight BYOBs to some of the best restaurants in town, here are 18 places you can stop by between trips to the farmers market, trying to get an appointment at the Apple Store, and evading the PPA on Walnut Street.


photo credit: GAB BONGHI


Center City

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CookNSolo spots follow the Three Little Bears model: Zahav is the fancy place, Laser Wolf is the trendy grill, and the new Dizengoff in Center City is a solid mix of both. The main perk: they serve Zahav and Laser Wolf hits a la carte, like za’atar roasted chicken and juicy dorade. Also, the scene is fun. People drink gin and swallow silky hummus like the world is ending, or at least like it's Friday even when it's a Monday. If you're having trouble getting a reservation, show up for a drink at the bar and get on the waitlist.

There are plenty of good date spots around Rittenhouse, but Friday Saturday Sunday is up there with the best in the city. Most of the bar menu is sharable—make sure to get the carrot confit and dry-aged duck—and it’s always just the right amount of dark inside, which makes it feel a little special, especially if you end up here on a weeknight. If you want to do it up, get a little fancy and make a reservation for the tasting menu experience upstairs.



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Her Place feels like the next generation of supper clubs: the food is better, you don’t need a membership, and you'll feel like you’re eating a meal at a chef’s house rather than at a small Center City restaurant. They serve a four-course $90 tasting menu that changes every two weeks. To get a reservation, you’ll need to be ready when they drop them every other Sunday at 6pm. This is the only place in Philly where you can eat fine dining-quality food like lobster ravioli and brown butter profiteroles while harmonizing with the chef to a Destiny’s Child song—all while you watch her put the finishing touches on a gorgeous plate of pasta.

photo credit: GAB BONGHI



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Parc is iconic and over-discussed for good reason. The classic French bistro looks like the set of a movie that takes place in Paris and anchors the east side of Rittenhouse Square. It's open all day and is always full of people and tiny dogs. And, on a nice day with a cold martini and the right pair of sunglasses, their sidewalk is one of the most glorious places you can sit in the neighborhood. Come for lunch on a day off or plop down at the bar and eat steak tartare and fries. Just don't settle for one of those dinky wooden tables in the middle of the dining room where servers will forget you exist. What are you, a tourist?

photo credit: NICOLE GUGLIELMO

Some restaurants take a few visits to become one of your go-to spots. At Rittenhouse’s My Loup, it takes about five minutes. The French restaurant is an easy choice for a special date night, fun group dinner, or martini-fueled catch-up with friends. Like its sister restaurant, Her Place Supper Club, it’s tricky to get a reservation. But the decadent food—like the seafood towers and cold roast beef served with fries—is worth the hassle. (Or just put your name down for a spot at the bar.)

For many people, Vernick is a special occasion restaurant. Reservations typically book up in advance. But if you work or live nearby, you’ll know that it’s actually pretty easy to get a table if you show up early enough. And the seasonal American food is consistently good. Start with the crab toast and then move into that glorious roast chicken.

Whether we’re stopping by this all-day Israeli spot to meet someone for coffee or to just pick up a Jerusalem bagel to eat on a bench in Rittenhouse Square, we always end up ordering more than we intended. Once you smell the pistachio sticky buns, you'll understand why.

Butcher & Singer is one of many steakhouses near Rittenhouse Square, but unlike the others, this one looks like the private establishment where fat cats compared gold bars before the crash of ‘29. Before the bone-in filets and seafood platters, this Art Deco clubhouse was a bank, and it still feels like you could walk in and ask for $100 in pennies without anyone batting an eye. All of their steaks are top-notch (especially the Delmonico), and skipping the crispy stuffed hash browns would be sacrilege. It’s all a bit over-the-top, but that’s what makes Butcher & Singer work.

Some steakhouses have a running rotation of elevator music or what sounds like Bach’s greatest hits playlist. At Rittenhouse Grill, you'll find a jazz pianist serenading you while you dive into things like roast prime rib, oysters, and juicy sea bass filets topped with a miso glaze. On most nights, expect a dimly lit atmosphere in a space full of deep black booths and a crowd that ranges from people celebrating their 50th anniversary to a group of friends sipping on merlot and arguing.

JJ Thai makes reliably good Thai food, both classic—like the refreshing and spicy crispy duck salad and savory, slippery pad see ew—and unconventional like the tender BBQ ribs. It's also a BYOB, making it a great choice for a group dinner or a casual weeknight date.

Oyster House, one of the city’s best raw bars, is perfect for nearly any occasion. Come for post-work lobster rolls and oysters with a colleague or client. Walk in with a friend or two when you want to chow down on shellfish, split a bottle of wine, and people-watch near the picture windows. Or come with a big group and share the bluefish dip, roasted XO clams, and a couple of the huge lobster rolls. It's a loud and lively scene, and always worth the wait on Sansom Street.

Most people come to for things like the well-made red curry chicken liver toast or a dozen oysters and a glass of wine from their well-curated wine list. But since the chic seasonal American spot cooks everything well, it’s no surprise that they make a great burger, too. It's big enough to split in case you want to save room for a chocolate tahini cake or maple lavender panna cotta to end your night. 

Mission Taqueria is low-key enough that you can walk in for a casual weekday lunch without a wait, but it also gets a lot busier in the after-work hours. So much so, that you’ll start to wonder if they doing some sort of Eagles-themed giveaway. They make all their tortillas as well as some good shrimp tacos. Bring a group of friends here for a few rounds of margaritas in a fun space that will make it feel like it’s your birthday, even when it isn’t.

The menu at this Japanese sushi spot gets creative with things like a grilled avocado stuffed with salmon, tuna, and yellowtail. But they also do straightforward rolls well, like the yellowtail with jalapeño and shrimp tempura. With lunch deals running through 5pm, you can drop in here between conference calls or sneak out of work a little early for some sake and a snack.

When the snow starts falling, an encyclopedic knowledge of the local bars that have fireplaces is pretty much invaluable. But The Dandelion works any time of year. They’ve committed to the British pub theme, and you’ll see this not only in design elements like tartan stools and silver trays brought out for tea service, but in a lengthy menu full of English staples like Sunday roast and rabbit pie. Bring your work friends, bring a date, or just bring yourself for a pint during Happy Hour.

When you want to impress a client or date, or you just want to get up, close, and personal with a big steak, make a reservation at Barclay Prime. Also if you’re hoping to spot someone from Creed 3 or Rocky 8, this is definitely the place to do it.

You might not guess from the outside, but Harp & Crown is enormous, so feel free to come with your friends, intramural kickball team, or the entire office. The cocktails are strong, and we always love a place where you can bowl, eat some pizza, and finish things off with a whoopie pie.

Located inside The Rittenhouse Hotel, Lacroix is a little slice of old-school Philadelphia opulence. The room is snoozy but the food, which is mostly French with some Japanese influence, often makes up for it. You’re going to encounter matsutake mushroom, pine oil, tournedos rossini, American wagyu, and bordelaise. You'll also feel your bank account getting slimmer as the night goes on. But if you want Fancy with a capital F, you’ll be pleased. 

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