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Where to Eat on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in Philly

Plus: takeout options and a handful of special parties and dinners that will help you get in the Christmas spirit even earlier.

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Clockwise from top L: Jane G's [<a href="http://on.fb.me/1yzlHtK">Facebook</a>], Vernick, Fork [Bill Addison], The Treemont, Tashan [<a href="http://on.fb.me/1umIhiZ">Facebook</a>], A. Kitchen [<a href="http://on.fb.me/1vQ0nyg">Facebook</a>]
Clockwise from top L: Jane G's [Facebook], Vernick, Fork [Bill Addison], The Treemont, Tashan [Facebook], A. Kitchen [Facebook]

Whether you're not celebrating Christmas or want to shift all the responsibilities of hosting the festive ordeal onto someone else, dining out on in Philly on December 24 and 25 can be tricky. Here are Eater's top picks for what's open on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day — plus, as a bonus, a few great options for takeout feasts and some chances to get in the Christmas spirit a little early. Of course, reservations and pre-orders are required across the board, so make the decision and lock it in soon.

Open Christmas Eve

A.Kitchen 135 S. 18th St.; website.
Chefs Eli Kulp and Jon Nodler have planned a five-course, family-style Feast of the Seven Fishes. The special dinner is $75 per person, with optional wine pairings available. Check out the full menu here. (The regular a la carte menu will also be available.)

Fork 306 Market St.; website.
Kulp's home base will be running a Feast of the Seven Fishes of its own, at $85 per person. See the details and menu here. (The regular menu will also be available.)

Vernick 2031 Walnut St.; website.
Holiday reservations are already in short supply at this Rittenhouse favorite, but they are open for dinner on both Christmas Eve and Day — so if this is your choice, book it soon. They'll be serving their regular menu as well as some special additions.

Le Virtu 1927 E. Passyunk Ave.; website.
Abruzzese staple Le Virtù will be open for dinner through 10 p.m. on Christmas Eve. In addition to their usual menu, they'll offer a fully customizable "Create Your Own Seven Fish" option.

South Philly Tap Room (1509 Mifflin St.; website) and American Sardine Bar (1800 Federal St.; website)
Owner John Longacre's places are perennial best bets for holidays (or bad weather, for that matter; they seemingly never close) &#8212; both spots will be open for normal hours on Christmas Eve and have hours on Christmas Day. No fancy prix fixes, no early kitchen closures. On December 24, normal hours mean the kitchens at both SPTR and ASB will be open until 1 a.m. (the bar's open until 2). On December 25, both will open back up at 6 p.m.

Serpico 604 South St.; website.
Peter Serpico has plans for a special three-course, family-style dinner on Christmas Eve for $65 per person.

Lacroix 210 Rittenhouse Square West; website.
For Christmas Eve, you can choose from one of the restaurant's luxe tasting menus: A four-course version at $79 per person, or the eight-course tasting for $125 per person.

The Treemont 231 S. 15th St.; website.
In fact, all of Chip Roman's restaurants will be open for Christmas Eve dinner: Ela, Blackfish, and Mica. We don't have details yet on whether any specials are in store (Ela's website does specify they'll be serving their normal a la carte menu), but whether you're in Center City or out in Chestnut Hill or Conshohocken, any of these options are good ones (especially if you're thinking seafood). UPDATED: Mica will offer a Seven Fishes dinner, at $65 per person, plus $40 for an optional wine pairing. Menu is here; call for reservations.

Talula's Daily (208 Washington Square West; website) and Talula's Garden (210 Washington Square West; website)
Both restaurants will be serving an a la carte menu as well as a prix fixe from 5 to 8 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

Slice 1740 Sansom St.; website.
Need something quick and casual to keep you going through the last-minute gift-wrapping crush? Slice won't be the only pizza shop open in Philly, but it will be the only one with a Pizza of the Seven Fishes on the menu. Their Center City location will be open until at least 6 p.m., and will extend delivery to the South Philly shop's usual delivery area.

Palladino's 1934 E. Passyunk Ave.; website.
Luke Palladino's Italian steakhouse on East Passyunk isn't open yet — it's still about a week away. But if you're a fan of his Jersey shore restaurants, you'll be happy to know that it will be open on Christmas Eve. They'll be serving their regular menu and offering all guests a complimentary holiday cocktail to kick off the holiday meal.

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Fork [Photo: Bill Addison/Eater.com]

Open Christmas Day

Vernick 2031 Walnut St.; website.
Holiday reservations are already in short supply at this Rittenhouse favorite, but they are open for dinner on both Christmas Eve and Day — so if this is your choice, book it soon. They'll be serving their regular menu as well as some special additions.

Lacroix 210 Rittenhouse Square West; website.
Lacroix will offer a special holiday version of its lavish brunch buffet on Christmas Day from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., at $95 per person.

10 Arts 10 S Broad St.; website.
The restaurant at the Ritz Carlton will offer a four-course holiday meal on Christmas Day, priced at $110 per adult and $55 per child.

South Philly Tap Room (1509 Mifflin St.; website) and American Sardine Bar (1800 Federal St.; website)
Owner John Longacre's places are perennial best bets for holidays (or bad weather, for that matter; they seemingly never close) &#8212; both spots will be open for normal hours on Christmas Eve and have hours on Christmas Day. No fancy set menus, no early kitchen closures. On December 24, normal hours mean the kitchens at both SPTR and ASB will be open until 1 a.m. (the bar's open until 2). On December 25, both will open back up at 6 p.m.

Tashan 777 S, Broad St.; website.
Munish Narula's upscale Indian restaurant and bar will be open as usual throughout the holiday.

Han Dynasty various locations; website.
Han Chiang's Sichuan mini-empire is a popular choice for holiday dining, if sucking down dan dan noodles sounds like a good way to spend Christmas Day (and why wouldn't it).

Jane G's 1930 Chestnut St.; website.
Another stylish spot for Sichuan favorites, Jane G's also boasts a killer Rittenhouse location.

Gyu-Kaku 1901 Callowhill St.; website.
This grill-it-yourself Japanese barbecue will be open for business as usual for a fun and interactive holiday meal.

Finally, of course, Chinatown is the go-to neighborhood on Christmas Day. You'll find more restaurants open there than it makes sense to list here.

Takeout/Catering

Percy Street Barbecue 900 South St.; website.
Chef Erin O'Shea is offering up a Krisket feast for Christmas pre-order — if it's not immediately apparent, that's a Christmas brisket. A whole smoked brisket sized to feed 10 to 12 people is $95 on its own; for $295 you can add a host of sides and dessert (green bean casserole, potato gratin, buttermilk-chive cornbread, and Key lime pie) and call the whole thing done. Order in advance via the CookNSolo store; pickup is on December 23, since the restaurant will be closed for both Christmas Eve and Day.

Fette Sau 1208 Frankford Ave.; website.
The Fishtown barbecue favorite is once again offering up their Cheerwine-brined Berkshire hams, smoked in-house. Choose a half ham (serves 6 to 10 people) for $70, or a whole ham (serves 10 to 16) for $135. Call to order by December 23 (but the earlier the better); hams will be available for pickup at the restaurant.

Stogie Joe's 1801 E. Passyunk Ave.; website.
This East Passyunk classic is offering a seafood-intensive "tavern-style" menu for a fully customizable Christmas Eve feast to go. (There are at least nine fishes all told, so go crazy.) Choices include clams casino, crab cakes, fried smelts, mussels, calamari, and a lot more — see the full menu toward the bottom of their page here. Call to order no later than Friday, December 19; pick-up is available at the restaurant until 4 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

Di Bruno Bros. Various locations; website.
There are endless options for to-go holiday orders here, from a la carte starters ($12 and up), to tricked-out cheese and charcuterie plates ($65 to $215, depending on how luxe you go and how massive a crowd you have to feed), to a full multi-course Christmas Eve dinner for eight ($295). Here's the full holiday catering menu; everything requires at least 48 to 72 hours of advance notice. (Call your favored location for exact holiday hour details, but it looks like the Rittenhouse and Ardmore shops will offer pick-up on Christmas Eve.)

Bonus Feasting Opportunities

Amis 412 S.13th St.; website.
The Vetri family of restaurants shuts down on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but Amis will still sneak in a Feast of the Seven Fishes, if a bit early. It's scheduled for Tuesday, December 23, and they're taking reservations now.

Sbraga 440 S. Broad St.; website.
Kevin Sbraga's flagship restaurant will have its own early Feast of the Seven Fishes, available for two nights, on Monday, December 22 and Tuesday, December 23. Check out the full seven-course menu ($75, plus optional $50 beverage pairing) here.

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Photo: Little Nonna's/Instagram

Little Nonna's 1234 Locust St.; website.
Marcie Turney's Italian-American spot has gone all out decorating their backyard for a couple of early Christmas parties, complete with guest appearances from Santa. The family-friendly "Natale di Nonna" events are scheduled for Sunday, December 14 and December 21, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. On the menu are family-style favorites like spaghetti and meatballs and holiday cookie plates, plus mulled wine, egg nog and hot chocolate (available spiked or not), and of course, selfies with Santa.

Zahav 237 St. James Pl.; website.
Tuesday, December 23 is the date for Zahav's annual "Jewish Christmas" celebration, featuring Chinese food and movies (the movie's a secret, but it's always something fun). Tickets are $75 per person (buy them here, and do it early, because this always sells out) and include food, tax, tip, and entertainment, but drinks are extra. This year, it's an all-out fusion dim sum binge. Here's the menu:

Yemenite soup with shrimp shumai, spicy carrots
Sticky rice in grape leaves, sucuk
Sweet potato pancakes, scallions, dried scallops, and peanuts
Foie gras soup dumplings, duck, and dates
Pork dumplings with walnuts and cucumber chermoula
Pickled cabbage, ground lamb, and tehina
Fideo noodle cake, crispy beef cheeks, pickles
Smoked mackerel, harissa green beans, yogurt
Tehina bubble tea, coffee cream

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