Phillye is packed with great options for romantic dining from casual eateries to elegant fine-dining destinations. The city is home to one of the highest concentrations of Italian-Americans in the country and is packed with fantastic Italian restaurants from little street-corner trattorias that serve homemade chianti to bustling neighborhood markets and family-owned restaurants. Tuck into traditional Cuban cuisine at Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar or traditional Pennsylvania Dutch food at The Dutch. The city has a spot for every occasion and here are some of the top spots for wining and dining.
© Barclay Prime
Barclay Prime is a luxury boutique steakhouse that is renowned for its world-class cuisine and fine wines. Established by acclaimed chef Stephen Starr, the high-end steakhouse and lounge boast a sleek and sophisticated space with marble accents, leather banquette seating, crystal chandeliers, and an intimate ambiance. An inventive menu offers contemporary steakhouse cuisine with modern twists, ranging from prime USDA beef, lamb chops and prime ribs, fresh seafood, housemade pasta, and fresh locally sourced salads and vegetables. The extensive bar menu features a variety of libations from global wines, craft beers on tap and by the bottle, and handcrafted cocktails made with top-shelf spirits. Barclay Prime is open for dinner, daily.
237 S 18th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103, Phone: 215-732-7560
Laurel is a contemporary French-inspired restaurant in South Philadelphia that offers an intimate dining experience with seasonal French cuisine. The cozy, stylish BYOB bistro only has 26 seats, making it an ideal spot for an intimate and romantic dinner, where owner Chef Nicholas Elmi creates refined, seasonal and local fare from locally sourced and regional ingredients. Tuck into appetizers of melon and yuzu potage, entrées of arctic char or roasted walu, and end with chef-chosen cheeses and local honey. Guests can complement the cuisine with wine pairings or bottles from an Old World-leaning list or bring their own tipple for a small corkage fee. Laurel is open for dinner only, Tuesday through Saturday.
1617 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19148, Phone: 215-271-8299
© Vedge Restaurant
Vedge was opened in 2011 by Chefs Richard Landau and Kate Jacoby and is well known for its vegan menu. Located in the historic Tiger Building on Locust Street, Vedge offers a classically elegant dining experience with a menu that has absolutely no animal products and aims to “to demonstrate the creativity and satisfaction of vegetable cuisine.” The menu, which highlights a bold, creative approach to cooking, features dishes such as Cauliflower Socca and Saffron Corn Broth or Portabello Carpaccio with shaved kale and sunflower seeds. Innovative desserts are also vegan – think Figgy Cheesecake and Mud Pie, and an exciting menu of cocktails, beers, and wine are also served.
1221 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA 19148, Phone: 215-320-7500
© Andrey Popov/stock.adobe.com
Located on the ground floor of the beautiful Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Volvér offers a unique theatrical dining experience. Founded by celeb chef Jose Garces, the stylish American hot spot offers two distinct experiences for diners, namely a small plates experience in the stylized bar accompanied by sparkling wine and caviar, or an exclusive multi-course chef’s tasting menu served in the intimate dining room. The prix fixe menu takes diners on a culinary journey through cuisines from around over the world showcasing regional specialties with eclectic dishes such as teriyaki-glazed shortribs with chawanmushi (a Japanese egg custard) and Ecuadorian-style ceviche with popped sorghum. World-class wines are paired with every dish, and other libations range from sparkling wines and champagnes to creative handcrafted cocktails. Volvér is open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday.
300 S Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19102, Phone: 215-670-2302
5.Alma de Cuba
© Alma de Cuba
Exuding vibrant atmosphere reminiscent of Old Havana, Alma de Cuba brings the bold tastes and flavors of Cuba to the heart of Philadelphia with traditional Cuban cuisine, colorful cocktails, and lively Cuban music. Owned by restaurateur Stephen Starr and Nuevo Latino superstar Chef Douglas Rodriguez, the buzzing restaurant and bar is an award-winning collaboration that embodies the soul of classic Cuban cuisine with a creative menu of delicious dishes. Signature dishes include a variety of mouthwatering ceviches, smoked marlin tacos and innovative interpretations of traditional dishes like vaca frita and lechon asada. The impressive bar menu features timeless Latin libations such as classic caipirinhas and mojitos, rum punch and sangria, as well as craft beers and casual wines. Alma de Cuba is open for dinner, daily.
1623 Walnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19103, Phone: 215-988-1799
Bibou is quaint, family-run, BYOB in Bella Vista that serves a French-inspired rotating menu of inventive fare and casual wines in a relaxed, laid-back setting. Owned by Pierre and Charlotte Calmels, the thimble-sized market-driven eatery features delicious dishes such as melon soup with slivered prosciutto, bone marrow, escargots, sturgeon confit, smoked trout caviar, and foie gras. A small selection of wines and French press coffee is available, and guests can bring their own wine for a corkage fee. Bibou is open for dinner Wednesday through Saturday.
1009 S 8th St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, Phone: 215-965-8290
© Bistro Romano
Bistro Romano is an intimate Italian eatery with a charming, rustic ambiance in the heart of Philadelphia. Housed in a historic building dating back to the early 1700s, Bistro Romano features open beam ceilings, exposed brick walls and dim lighting which create a warm, informal setting for a romantic rendezvous. An upstairs lounge and bar feature the original bar fixture from the luxury liner City of Detroit III and comfortable leather seating, while the wine cellar locates beneath the street is part of the former network of underground tunnels in Society Hill and is home to an impressive collection of vintages. Guests can enjoy a unique experience by dining in the wine cellar, listening to soothing live music in the piano bar or taking part in one of the popular Mystery Theater events that are frequently hosted at Bistro Romano.
120 Lombard St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, Phone: 215-925-8880
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8.Bistrot La Minette
© Bistrot La Minette
Bistrot La Minette is an authentic French bistro on 6th Street that celebrates the birthplace of the American Revolution with a from-scratch market-driven menu of French-inspired cuisine. The charming Queen Village French bistro features an inviting dining room with art-adorned walls and a lovely terrace that screens French films during the summer and serves a menu of decadent French dishes like foie gras terrine, garlicky escargot, and trout meuniere. The bar serves a selection of handcrafted cocktails, signature spirits, craft beers and casual wines from France, and further afield, and the bistro is open for dinner, daily, and weekend brunch and lunch.
623 S 6th St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, Phone: 215-925-8000
Buddakan is an award-winning restaurant from Steven Starr that serves exotic Pan-Asian cuisine in a spectacular setting. Opened in 1998 and part of Steven Starr’s dining empire, Buddakan is housed in a former post office with soaring ceilings and striking décor, including a shimmering waterfall and a 10-foot-tall candle-bedecked gilded Buddha statue. The menu features modern Asian-fusion cuisine with signature dishes like wasabi-crusted filet mignon and Malaysian spicy lobster, and the cuisine is accompanied by an extensive selection of global wines, craft beers, and classic cocktails. Buddakan is open for lunch and dinner, Monday through Friday and dinner only on the weekends.
325 Chestnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19106, Phone: 215-574-9440
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10.Butcher and Singer
© Butcher and Singer
Based in a historic location at 1500 Walnut Street, Butcher & Singer is an elegant eatery that offers an intimate and sophisticated dining experience. Boasting a relaxed clubhouse setting that pays homage to Old Hollywood with dark wood décor, intimate seating, and soft lighting, the restaurant serves a menu of classic American chophouse fare such as prime USDA steaks and chops, prime ribs, fresh seafood, such as oysters Rockefeller and crab Louie, and fresh salads and vegetarian options. The extensive bar menu features a variety of libations from global wines, craft beers on tap and by the bottle, and handcrafted cocktails made with top-shelf spirits. Butcher & Singer is open for lunch and dinner, Monday through Friday and dinner only on the weekends.
1500 Walnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19102, Phone: 215-732-4444
© City Tavern
Located in Independence National Historical Park, the City Tavern offers a unique historical culinary experience. Established in 1773, the restaurant is set in a beautifully reconstructed Colonial tavern designed to be the replica of a historic 18th-century building and features servers in period dress that offers a variety of old-fashioned American fare. Diners take a journey back in time to colonial Philadelphia when the revolution was brewing and savor 18th-century dishes recreated by Emmy award-winning chef Walter Staib, such as tenderloin tips with mushrooms, turkey pot pie, and West Indies pepperpot soup. The food is accompanied by a variety of ales and brews and casual wines, and the City Tavern is open for lunch and dinner, daily.
138 S 2nd St, Philadelphia, PA 19106, Phone: 215-413-1443
12.Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar
© Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar
Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar is a bright and bold Cuban eatery, and rum bar chain found in several East Coast cities that offer a joyful, vibrant Cuban experience. The restaurant features an open-air setting with the colorful Caribbean and vintage décor and a tropical ambiance with upbeat Latin music and serves a menu of creative Cuban criollo (home-style) cuisine like Cuban sandwiches, shrimp ceviche, guava-spiced BBQ. Sip timeless Latin cocktails such as classic caipirinhas, mojitos, and rum punch, along with craft beers and casual wines and dance the night away on two salsa dancing floors on Friday and Saturday nights. Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar is open for lunch and dinner, daily.
10 S 2nd St, Philadelphia, PA 19106, Phone: 215-627-0666
13.Dante & Luigi's
© Syda Productions/stock.adobe.com
Established in 1899, Dante & Luigi’s is Philadelphia's oldest restaurant and the longest continuously running Italian restaurant in the United States. Situated in the heart of the historic Italian Market district, Dante & Luigi’s was once the destination of immigrants from Italy arriving in Philadelphia, who unable to speak English, came with scraps of paper citing the name of the restaurant, where they were lodging and worked in the restaurant. Today, housed in two converted townhouses, Dante & Luigi's retains much of the charm and serves a well-balanced mix of Old World specialties, ocean-fresh seafood and no less than 15 types of exceptional handmade pasta dishes. For an authentic taste of an Italian classic, try the tiramisu with hand-dipped ice creams.
762 S 10th St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, Phone: 215-922-9501
© Estia Restaurant
Estia is a stylish Greek eatery with a homey ambiance that serves authentic Greek and Mediterranean cuisine. One of three locations, the family-friendly restaurant features a deep blue ceiling, antiqued stucco whitewashed walls, hand-chiseled limestone floors, hand-woven rugs, rustic farm tables, dark wood chairs, and upholstered banquettes for intimate dining. An indoor courtyard with a living olive tree is perfect for romantic alfresco dining in the summer, where guests can tuck into authentic Greek fare such as grilled calamari or octopus, fresh salads and mezze like hummus and tzatziki, and fresh Mediterranean fish. Estia is open seven days a week for lunch, dinner, and pre-theater meals.
1405-07 Locust St, Philadelphia, PA 19102, Phone: 215-735-7700
Fork is an award-winning Old City culinary gem that has been serving sophisticated New American cuisine for the past two decades. Helmed by Chef John Patterson, the fine-dining destination features stylish and modern interiors with a cast-concrete bar, hand-painted chandeliers, and contemporary murals painted by Anthony DeMelas. The creative menu features dishes like hand-torn scallops with carrots, New Jersey golden tilefish, lamb tartare with Sauer kohlrabi, duroc pork with spaetzle, and a selection of handmade pasta with from-scratch sauces. The extensive bar menu features a variety of libations from global wines, craft beers on tap and by the bottle, and handcrafted cocktails made with top-shelf spirits. Fork is open for dinner daily and Sunday brunch and lunch.
306 Market St, Philadelphia, PA 19106, Phone: 215-625-9425
16.Lacroix Restaurant at The Rittenhouse
© Lacroix Restaurant at The Rittenhouse
Set within the elegant Rittenhouse Hotel, the Lacroix Restaurant is a stately refuge with a globally-inspired menu of progressive international cuisine, served in a gracious and refined setting. Helmed by renowned Executive Chef Jon Cichon, the award-winning restaurant serves breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner with creative dishes prepared from the best locally sourced and seasonal ingredients. Diners can savor innovative breakfast plates like Norwegian Benedict with house-smoked salmon with spinach and Hollandaise sauce, avocado toast with Blue Crab on toasted brioche, and soft poached eggs with lobster and caviar friseé. Lacroix Restaurant also offers an exclusive Chef's Table, in-room dining, and private dining.
210 W Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia, PA 19103, Phone: 215-790-2533
Morimoto is a contemporary Japanese restaurant helmed by acclaimed Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto and James Beard Award-winning restaurateur Stephen Starr that presents a variety of traditional Japanese and Asian dishes with a modern flair. Located Philadelphia’s Historic District, Morimoto has been a renowned destination on the Philadelphia food scene since 2001. The popular spot features high-design décor and extraordinary changing-color booths and delivers creative tasting menus of innovative and elegant Japanese cuisine. Sip top-shelf sake, imported beers and fine wines with your food, which can be enjoyed for lunch Monday through Friday and dinner on the weekends.
723 Chestnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19106, Phone: 215-413-9070
© The Moshulu
The Moshulu is the world’s largest tall ship that is still afloat and offers a unique, one-of-a-kind dining experience on the outdoor decks and in private dining rooms within the vessel. After launching in 1904, the ship sailed the world and was used during wartime before retiring and being towed to Philadelphia and opened as a floating restaurant. Today, the boat boasts several elegant dining rooms for intimate, private dining and large open-air decks where guests can enjoy excellent cuisine against a backdrop of spectacular city and waterfront views. The Moshulu is open for lunch and dinner, daily, along with weekend brunch.
401 S Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19106, Phone: 215-923-2500
© Ocean Prime
Ocean Prime is an award-winning modern American restaurant and lounge with a beautifully appointed dining room, an elegant lounge and sophisticated energy. Created by renowned restaurateur Cameron Mitchell, the upscale restaurant features stylish Art Deco-inspired décor, sleek finishes, and beautiful light fittings. The menu features classic steakhouse fare such as prime USDA steaks and lamb chops, fresh sustainable-caught seafood and catch-of-the-day fish, housemade pasta and sauces, and fresh locally sourced ingredients and regional produce. The cuisine is accompanied by a hand-curated wine list of casual wines and a spirited cocktail menu featuring classic and modern libations, as well as craft beers by the bottle and on tap. Ocean Prime is open for dinner, seven nights a week.
124 S 15th St, Philadelphia, PA 19102, Phone: 215-563-0163
Tucked away in the Penn's View Hotel in the heart of Philadelphia's Old City, Panorama is an upscale North-Italian eatery with the world's largest wine dispensary. The convivial family-friendly eatery oozes old-school Italian charm with large Tuscan doors and dark wood accents, comfortable seating with vintage upholstery, and candle chandeliers that emit a warm, soft glow. The menu is packed with authentic dishes prepared with thick-cut local meats, fresh seafood, organic salads and vegetables, and herb-dusted house focaccia bread with signature plates like a braised leg of lamb with spicy salsa verde and hand-rolled ricotta gnocchi with broccoli rabe pesto. The extensive wine list features global wines by the glass or bottle, as suggested by certified sommeliers.
14 N Front St, Philadelphia, PA 19106, Phone: 215-922-7800
© R2L Restaurant
Located on the 37th floor of Two Liberty Place, R2L is a sleek, sophisticated restaurant and private event space with awe-inspiring city views. Featuring floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall glass windows that embrace breathtaking panoramic views that span for over 40 miles, an elegant dining room and lounge with a full-service bar, and an open kitchen where award-winning chefs display their culinary skills, the stylish restaurant is the perfect place for a romantic celebration. Chef Daniel Stern presents a menu of inventive American cuisine, which is accompanied by a selection of fine wines and handcrafted cocktails, and the restaurant caters for private events and functions with tailor-made menus and libations. R2L Restaurant is open for dinner, nightly.
50 S 16th St 37th floor, Philadelphia, PA 19102, Phone: 215-564-5337
Ristorante Pesto is a traditional, family-owned, and operated Italian restaurant that has been serving loyal patrons delicious and heart-warming Southern Italian cuisine for years. Open for dinner only, Monday through Saturday; the charming restaurant prides itself on preparing and serving Italian fare that is created with only the best locally sourced and imported ingredients, cooked with Old World culinary techniques and recipes and served in an inviting atmosphere. The quintessential old-school Italian restaurant has a comfortable dining room with a menu to match that features appetizers and antipasti of meats, cheeses, olives and grilled vegetables, fresh salads, homemade pasta dishes with their award-winning red sauce, entrées of chicken, veal, pork and beef, served in a variety of ways, hearty sides and of, course sweet desserts. Ristorante Pesto is a BYOB restaurant.
1915 S Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19148, Phone: 215-336-8380
23.Rose Tattoo Cafe
© Rose Tattoo Café
Set on the corner of 19th and Callowhill Street in a historic Victorian row house, the Rose Tattoo Café is a romantic eatery with a charming flower-filled interior and beautiful balcony for alfresco-style dining in the summer. The contemporary bistro serves an eclectic menu of seasonal American fare prepared with farm-sourced ingredients with dishes like Goat Cheese & Roasted Beet Salad, Spicy Louisiana BBQ Shrimp, Grilled Baby Lamb Chops, and the signature Rose Tattoo Mushroom Bisque. The food is accompanied by a selection of casual wines, craft beers, and handcrafted cocktails, and the café is open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday.
1847 Callowhill Street corner of 19th &, Callowhill St, Philadelphia, PA 19130, Phone: 215-569-8939
© Talula's Garden
Nestled behind a wrought iron gate with a charming herbaceous patio and beautiful atrium, Talula's Garden offers a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Managed by Aimee Olexy and Starr Restaurants, the elegant Washington Square eatery offers a farm-to-table dining experience driven by locally sourced ingredients and regional produce. Seasonal menus feature artful cuisine with a European touch such as Petite Italian Meatballs, Braised Lamb Pappardelle, Slow Smoked Heritage Pork Chop, and Pan Roasted Scottish Salmon. The food is paired with global wines, craft beers, and handcrafted cocktails made with top-shelf spirits, and the café is open for dinner nightly and Sunday brunch.
210 W Washington Square, Philadelphia, PA 19106, Phone: 215-592-7787
© Vetri Ristorante
Established by Chef-owner Marc Vetri in 1998, this comfortable, nationally acclaimed restaurant seats only 35 guests so it is always full and reservations are essential. Claiming rave reviews from inception, Vetri Ristorante is renowned as being the standard-bearer for Italian cooking in the city, drawing pilgrims from far and wide to savor the exquisite menu offerings. Seamlessly blending authenticity and originality, Marc Vetri offers a prix fixe menu and a custom-tailored menu, which feature inspired dishes such as baby goat with freshly stone-milled polenta, cocoa-dusted chestnut fettucini with boar, and Texas antelope with squash and a delicious Amarone sauce. Signature desserts include chocolate polenta soufflé and Campari-tinged sorbet, and a curated wine list is offered to pair with the perfect cuisine.
1312 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, Phone: 215-732-3478
25 Best Romantic Restaurants in Philadelphia, PA
- Barclay Prime, Photo: Barclay Prime
- Laurel, Photo: Laurel
- Vedge Restaurant, Photo: Vedge Restaurant
- Volver, Photo: Andrey Popov/stock.adobe.com
- Alma de Cuba, Photo: Alma de Cuba
- Bibou, Photo: iana_kolesnikova/stock.adobe.com
- Bistro Romano, Photo: Bistro Romano
- Bistrot La Minette, Photo: Bistrot La Minette
- Buddakan, Photo: Buddakan
- Butcher and Singer, Photo: Butcher and Singer
- City Tavern, Photo: City Tavern
- Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar, Photo: Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar
- Dante & Luigi's, Photo: Syda Productions/stock.adobe.com
- Estia Restaurant, Photo: Estia Restaurant
- Fork, Photo: Fork
- Lacroix Restaurant at The Rittenhouse, Photo: Lacroix Restaurant at The Rittenhouse
- Morimoto, Photo: Morimoto
- The Moshulu, Photo: The Moshulu
- Ocean Prime, Photo: Ocean Prime
- Panorama, Photo: Panorama
- R2L Restaurant, Photo: R2L Restaurant
- Ristorante Pesto, Photo: Viktoriia/stock.adobe.com
- Rose Tattoo Cafe, Photo: Rose Tattoo Café
- Talula's Garden, Photo: Talula's Garden
- Vetri Ristorante, Photo: Vetri Ristorante
- Cover Photo: Yakov/stock.adobe.com