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Philly’s 10 Most-Searched Restaurants of 2013

By Danya Henninger
December 20, 2013

What restaurants were Philadelphians most interested in finding on Zagat.com this year? We’ve got the 10 most-searched spots right here, along with a hint on why they made the list and what to eat when you visit.

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    10) Oyster House

    Food: 24
    Decor: 22
    Service: 22
    Cost: $41

    Why we’re searching for it: Current owner Sam Mink’s grandfather founded the Center City seafooder in 1976 and it’s been a Philadelphia institution ever since.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Oysters (duh), lobster roll, clambake for two

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    9) Capital Grille

    Food: 26
    Decor: 25
    Service: 26
    Cost: $65

    Why we’re searching for it: With a central location just feet from City Hall and a luxe dining room, the steakhouse is a go-to option for power lunches and expense-account dinners.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Kona coffee-crusted New York strip, Caesar salad

  • 8) La Viola

    Food: 24
    Decor: 16
    Service: 23
    Cost: $32

    Why we’re searching for it: Since opening in 2001, this Italian BYO has been an under-the-radar favorite nestled among other, more-splashy Rittenhouse dining rooms.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Seafood risotto, penne with pancetta and peas

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    7) Tinto

    Food: 27
    Decor: 24
    Service: 24
    Cost: $56

    Why we’re searching for it: Anything with Jose Garces’ name on it will get attention, but the consistently interesting Basque wines and pintxos plates speak for themselves at this Rittenhouse room.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Serrano ham-wrapped figs, albondigas (spiced meatballs), octopus

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    6) Will

    Food: -
    Decor: -
    Service: -
    Cost: E
    Note: this restaurant is too new to have an official Zagat rating yet.

    Why we’re searching for it: At his East Passyunk BYO, chef-owner Christopher Kearse puts out colorful, carefully designed plates whose flavor combos live up to their fine-art appearances.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Foie gras and rabbit terrine, rainbow trout (when in season)

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    5) Vernick Food and Drink

    Food: -
    Decor: -
    Service: -
    Cost: E
    Note: this restaurant is too new to have an official Zagat rating yet.

    Why we’re searching for it: Rittenhouse drinkers flock to the bar for Vincent Stipo’s cocktails and then join chefs and diners from all over for Gregory Vernick’s food.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Scrambled eggs with uni, peas and bacon toast, roasted Amish chicken

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    4) Fountain

    Food: 29
    Decor: 28
    Service: 28
    Cost: $82

    Why we’re searching for it: For 30 years, the restaurant overlooking Swann Fountain has been a draw for locals looking for high-end dinner or brunch as much as for travelers staying upstairs in the Four Seasons hotel.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Scallop and fried oyster duet, aged beef carpaccio, Muscovy duck breast

  • 3) Han Dynasty

    Food: 25
    Decor: 15
    Service: 19
    Cost: $26

    Why we’re searching for it: For those not afraid of spice, Han Chiang’s stable of dining rooms provide an opportunity to try Sichuan cuisine beyond standard Chinese restaurant fare.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Spicy crispy cucumber, dan dan noodles, dry pot fish

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    2) The Continental

    Food: 24
    Decor: 22
    Service: 22
    Cost: $35

    Why we’re searching for it: Mega restaurateur Stephen Starr’s first restaurant was this Old City martini bar, and it still packs ‘em in.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Shoestring fries, lobster mashed potatoes

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    1) Vetri

    Food: 29
    Decor: 25
    Service: 28
    Cost: $202

    Why we’re searching for it: Marc Vetri’s original on Spruce Street has gone tasting menu only, but that just makes a trip to the petite Italian dining room even more special.

    Don’t-miss dishes: Spinach gnocchi, foie gras pastrami

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Places Mentioned

La Viola

Italian • Rittenhouse Square

Food24 Decor16 Service23 Cost$32
 
 
 
Han Dynasty

Chinese • Exton

Food25 Decor15 Service19 Cost$26
 
 
 
Han Dynasty

Chinese • Royersford

Food25 Decor15 Service19 Cost$26
 
 
 
Tinto Restaurant

Spanish • Rittenhouse Square

Food27 Decor24 Service24 Cost$56
 
 
 
Han Dynasty

Chinese • Powelton Village

Food25 Decor15 Service19 Cost$26
 
 
 
Fountain Restaurant

Continental • Logan Square

Food29 Decor28 Service28 Cost$82
 
 
 
Continental

Continental • Old City

Food24 Decor22 Service22 Cost$35
 
 
 
Vernick Food & Drink

American • Rittenhouse Square

Food- Decor- Service- CostE
 
 
 
Vetri

Italian • Washington Square West

Food29 Decor25 Service28 Cost$202
 
 
 
Oyster House

Seafood • Rittenhouse Square

Food24 Decor22 Service22 Cost$41
 
 
 
 
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