Though Philadelphia is known for being more affordable than many major cities, if the occasion calls for a decadent, splurge-worthy meal, it doesn’t disappoint. Some of the best options for a seriously indulgent dinner include sophisticated steakhouses, an Italian landmark, and hidden sushi counters. In the post-pandemic world, many restaurants have shifted to offering pricier prix fixe menus only, which means that this map has grown, but so has the quality of your dinner. The meals below don’t come cheap — food, drinks, and tip can easily run $500 and up for two — but if you’re looking to celebrate or impress, the experience is worth it.Read More
Philly’s Best Prix Fixe Menus to Splurge On
These meals are over $120 per person with additional prices — and quality — going up, up, up
Hiroki Fujiyama, formerly the sushi expert at Morimoto, chose Fishtown for his eponymous Japanese restaurant where the only option is omakase. In the small, low-lit space, the chef serves a masterfully prepared 20-course tasting menu for $155 per person, plus $65 with the sake pairing. Dinner here runs from small bites to sushi to soup and finally, dessert. Hiroki is in the same ownership group as Philly destination Wm. Mulherin’s Sons.
Dine in the clouds at Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s first Philadelphia restaurant, located at the Four Seasons hotel in the Comcast Technology Center. At 59 stories up, the highest restaurant in town is worth a visit for the views alone, but the food is equally impressive. A six-course tasting menu for $218 per person includes the decadent egg toast and caviar along with a few other “iconic JG snacks” before moving into six courses from the land and sea. There is also a vegetarian tasting menu for $198, which can be made vegan-friendly. A wine pairing of $178 is the priciest in town, but make sure to drink water too — it’s important to hydrate well at this altitude.
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Everything about the Rittenhouse hotel exudes elegance: the chic location right on Rittenhouse Square, the luxe furnishings and decor, the sophisticated bars, and the swank restaurant Lacroix. Under the purview of one of Philly’s top chefs, Eric Leveillee, Lacroix’s dishes infuse creativity with elegance. Think: a risotto of finely chopped new potatoes with kaluga caviar and a5 wagyu beef with purple cabbage terrine. A tasting menu goes for $175, plus $90 for a wine pairing.
Friday Saturday Sunday
When it shifted to tasting menu only, the price to dine at Friday Saturday Sunday stepped up into the “splurge” category. At the same time, chef-owner Chad Williams seems to have somehow stepped up his already-special game. The eight-course menu goes for $165 a person, plus tax, tip, and drinks (including a stellar $105 wine pairing option). The dishes and ingredients change constantly, but you can count on each one being well-executed, with creative and delicious flourishes. The cocktails, music, service, and even the lighting here add up to a just-right vibe. It’s why reservations book up the minute they’re released.
If the tony address on Rittenhouse Square didn’t convey how fancy Stephen Starr’s Barclay Prime is, the presentation of steak knife options should do the trick. Choose from Japanese, German, Australian, and French utensils to cut into Barclay’s prime dry-aged steaks in its dimly lit library-themed dining room. This is the place to try their “Grand Plateau” that features a chef’s selection of raw bar and seafood cocktail for $185 (add caviar for an additional $75).
The tasting menu ($165) is the only option at star chef Marc Vetri’s flagship restaurant on Spruce Street. But unlike at many other restaurants, it includes several options for each course and is adjusted for each table based on diners’ preferences. Tucked into a classic Philly rowhouse, the restaurant seats just 32 at a time. Standout recurring dishes include the sweet onion crepe, swiss chard gnocchi, almond tortellini, and baby goat with polenta. The wine pairing is $95, and worth it.
Chris D’Ambro and Marina de Oliveira proved themselves with neighborhood favorite Southwark before opening Ambra in an intimate space next door. Here, D’Ambro and his small team showcase their impressive cooking chops at a kitchen table for small parties ($300 a person, including beverage pairing, tax, and tip) and a private dining room with a custom 12-foot table for bigger groups ($2500). Ambra’s ever-changing menu gussies up traditional Italian cooking with international flavors, modernist techniques, and seasonal ingredients, including produce and herbs grown in Southwark’s garden. Dinner here is one of Philly’s most unforgettable and delicious experiences — and probably why it books up two months in advance.
Famed pastry chef Alexandra Holt’s Roxanne has become a new phenomenon that’s not always easy to come by. For $120 per person, this multi-course dinner BYOB is a culinary experiment between sweet and savory, pastries and dinner — proving we can all have it all.
Royal Sushi & Izakaya
Only a handful of people get to experience chef Jesse Ito’s $230 17-piece omakase at a time — and, no surprise, the two nightly seatings (Tuesday thru Saturday) are booked weeks in advance. The meal takes place at a hidden sushi counter (Royal Sushi) set behind a curtain in the back of a hip Japanese bar (Royal Izakaya). Ito, a James Beard award finalist in 2023, sauces and garnishes each pristine piece of fish individually. Recent highlights include scored and seared king salmon belly, thread sail filefish with liver sauce, Japanese beltfish, and Japanese grouper.
There are steakhouses and then there’s chef Antimo DiMeo’s “meat kingdom.” At Bardea Steak in Wilmington, Delaware, a $180 steak tasting (with an additional $30 option to “complete your experience”) showcases a few of the cattle breeds and cuts that this newcomer offers. Alternatively, you can order cuts of wagyu and steaks from other rare breeds by the ounce, with the option to add $60 worth of caviar on top.