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Roxanne BYOB.
Mike Prince

The Hottest New Restaurants in Philly, September 2022

Where to get breakfast tacos, specialty coffee, vegan tapas, and New York slices in and around Philly

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Roxanne BYOB.
| Mike Prince

Notable new restaurants open all the time in Philadelphia — and while the city continues to fight the pandemic (yes, the pandemic is still happening) there are plenty of places to try that offer great options for outdoor dining, takeout, delivery, and indoor dining. Be patient as changing times and over two years of ups and downs have been tough on restaurants and their staff. Don’t forget to tip well and bring your mask and vaxx card, anyway — some restaurants are requiring them regardless of the city mandate.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

La Chingonita

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La Chingonita — the beloved roving Mexican food truck run by chefs Rebecca Baez and Omar Martinez — has found a permanent home on Girard Avenue where, if you catch them during the daytime lunch hours, Baez and Martinez will serve you carnitas tacos, tortas, and conchas that will change your life. Keep a lookout on social media — the menu changes often.

Persimmon Coffee

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The brick-and-mortar outpost of Philly’s favorite coffee pop-up is finally at home in Fishtown, right next door to Weckerly’s. What started as a pandemic coffee roasting project from three friends is now a full-blown coffee shop, with specialty drinks, merch, and beans, all served in a lovely, airy space. Try the Cloud Dancer, an espresso drink made with tonic water, ginger beer, blueberry preserves, heavy cream, and a sprig of mint over ice.

A white coffee machine with red text that says la marzocco. Chaereen Pak

Saami Somi at Reading Terminal Market

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There are few things better than the combination of bread and cheese, and at Saami Somi — the new Georgian stall at Reading Terminal Market — the pairing achieves new heights. That’s because Saami Somi serves khachapuri, the Georgian bread boat made with salty, melted cheese and topped with a cracked egg. Don’t forget to order khinkali dumplings, too.

Alyza Enriquez

Golden Dragon Takeout

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Opened by three friends in West Philly, Golden Dragon Takeout is not just a restaurant where you can pick up to-go containers of delicious curry bowls or kimchi, egg, and cheese sandwiches. It’s also a restaurant that is dedicated to being a mission-driven community hub in the neighborhood: Local organizations collaborate with Golden Dragon regularly to make the restaurant a space where other small businesses can thrive and the community’s needs are served, too. The restaurant is takeout and cash only.

An overhead shot of a bowl General Tso’s chicken and plantains next to a bell and a yellow, black, and white zine. Gab Bonghi

At Amina in Old City, influences from Southern and Nigerian cuisine inspire dishes like peri peri wings, braised oxtails, and buffalo-fried okra, as well as fun cocktails that will delight any diner. The restaurant is a collaboration between Felicia Wilson and chef Darryl Harmon, who worked in New York City for many years and as the executive chef at the Water Works in Philly. Reservations can be made online.

Sooo Delicious Soul Food Cafe

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Migrating from a food truck to a brick-and-mortar is a common practice for Philly restaurants, which means everyone who checks Instagram regularly to find out where the truck might be next can finally relax. The Sooo Delicious soul food truck is now one of Philly’s best restaurants with a permanent home — crab cakes, fried chicken wings, candied yams, mac and cheese, collard greens are now accessible on Locust Street every day, save for Monday and Tuesday.

Paulie Gee’s Soul City Slice Shop

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We Philadelphians tend to raise an eyebrow at any New York export that decides to make its second home in Philly, but at Paulie Gee’s Soul City Slice Shop, no side-eyeing is necessary. That’s because pizza from Paulie Gee’s is a dream no matter where you get it — see the Freddy Prinze, an upside-down Sicilian pie with a sesame seed bottom — and at Philly’s new outpost, you can pay pool while eating pies until 2 a.m. on the weekends.

Fitz on 4th

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In the space that formerly held Fitz and Starts, Fitz on 4th is a new destination in Queen Village for vegan tapas and exciting cocktails. Think cashew ricotta with garlic focaccia or jackfruit sliders with house-made cheese sauce, and cocktails like the Mason’s Garden, made with gin, cucumber, basil, and lemon. Sunday brunch is also an option.

Roxanne

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Alexandra Holt’s tasting menu restaurant is at once serious and playful — the chef’s fine dining culinary experience is on display in expertly composed dishes that also come with a wink. Think tomato cannolis, raclette ice cream cake with caviar, and potatoes all ways. (As Holt attests, potatoes are her favorite food.) The menu will change frequently, according to whatever Holt feels like cooking. Reservations can be booked online here.

Taco Heart

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For a few hours every morning (save for Monday and Tuesday), diners on East Passyunk Avenue can pick up breakfast tacos from Taco Heart, the brick-and-mortar taco spot from pop-up taco mastermind Nano Wheedan. Wheedan makes the flour tortillas that enrobe refried pinto beans, chorizo, eggs, and avocados (among other ingredients), and they’re all recipes inspired by his time living in Austin, Texas. You can preorder online up to a week in advance online.

Milk Jawn

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Everyone’s favorite pop-up ice cream purveyor has finally opened its first brick and mortar on East Passyunk, and even if it’s already fall, ice cream is good all year. The new storefront will sell pints, scoops, and cups in flavors like tahini fudge swirl; cold brew and caramelized cacao nibs; and lemon curd with blueberry basil swirl. Vegan and non-dairy options are also available.

Ocho Rios Parrilla

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East Passyunk Avenue is home to some of Philly’s best restaurants and we’re lucky to have another one in the mix. Ochos Rio Parrilla is serving up Jamaican food and cocktails, like beef patties, jerk chicken, oxtail stew, and triple rum punch. Platters are large and the space is cozy — another East Passyunk gem-to-be.

Burgertime NJ

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Chef Dane DeMarco’s burger restaurant, Burgertime, may be in New Jersey but who doesn’t love a road trip? A quick drive over the bridge is worth it for Burgertime and DeMarco’s menu of Tater Tots, burgers, hot dogs, and sides. Miss Philly? DeMarco’s pork roll cheesesteak burger with cherry pepper relish will remind you of home. Bonus: Almost everything on the menu can be made vegetarian or vegan.

La Chingonita

La Chingonita — the beloved roving Mexican food truck run by chefs Rebecca Baez and Omar Martinez — has found a permanent home on Girard Avenue where, if you catch them during the daytime lunch hours, Baez and Martinez will serve you carnitas tacos, tortas, and conchas that will change your life. Keep a lookout on social media — the menu changes often.

Persimmon Coffee

A white coffee machine with red text that says la marzocco. Chaereen Pak

The brick-and-mortar outpost of Philly’s favorite coffee pop-up is finally at home in Fishtown, right next door to Weckerly’s. What started as a pandemic coffee roasting project from three friends is now a full-blown coffee shop, with specialty drinks, merch, and beans, all served in a lovely, airy space. Try the Cloud Dancer, an espresso drink made with tonic water, ginger beer, blueberry preserves, heavy cream, and a sprig of mint over ice.

A white coffee machine with red text that says la marzocco. Chaereen Pak

Saami Somi at Reading Terminal Market

Alyza Enriquez

There are few things better than the combination of bread and cheese, and at Saami Somi — the new Georgian stall at Reading Terminal Market — the pairing achieves new heights. That’s because Saami Somi serves khachapuri, the Georgian bread boat made with salty, melted cheese and topped with a cracked egg. Don’t forget to order khinkali dumplings, too.

Alyza Enriquez

Golden Dragon Takeout

An overhead shot of a bowl General Tso’s chicken and plantains next to a bell and a yellow, black, and white zine. Gab Bonghi

Opened by three friends in West Philly, Golden Dragon Takeout is not just a restaurant where you can pick up to-go containers of delicious curry bowls or kimchi, egg, and cheese sandwiches. It’s also a restaurant that is dedicated to being a mission-driven community hub in the neighborhood: Local organizations collaborate with Golden Dragon regularly to make the restaurant a space where other small businesses can thrive and the community’s needs are served, too. The restaurant is takeout and cash only.

An overhead shot of a bowl General Tso’s chicken and plantains next to a bell and a yellow, black, and white zine. Gab Bonghi

AMINA

At Amina in Old City, influences from Southern and Nigerian cuisine inspire dishes like peri peri wings, braised oxtails, and buffalo-fried okra, as well as fun cocktails that will delight any diner. The restaurant is a collaboration between Felicia Wilson and chef Darryl Harmon, who worked in New York City for many years and as the executive chef at the Water Works in Philly. Reservations can be made online.

Sooo Delicious Soul Food Cafe

Migrating from a food truck to a brick-and-mortar is a common practice for Philly restaurants, which means everyone who checks Instagram regularly to find out where the truck might be next can finally relax. The Sooo Delicious soul food truck is now one of Philly’s best restaurants with a permanent home — crab cakes, fried chicken wings, candied yams, mac and cheese, collard greens are now accessible on Locust Street every day, save for Monday and Tuesday.

Paulie Gee’s Soul City Slice Shop

We Philadelphians tend to raise an eyebrow at any New York export that decides to make its second home in Philly, but at Paulie Gee’s Soul City Slice Shop, no side-eyeing is necessary. That’s because pizza from Paulie Gee’s is a dream no matter where you get it — see the Freddy Prinze, an upside-down Sicilian pie with a sesame seed bottom — and at Philly’s new outpost, you can pay pool while eating pies until 2 a.m. on the weekends.

Fitz on 4th

In the space that formerly held Fitz and Starts, Fitz on 4th is a new destination in Queen Village for vegan tapas and exciting cocktails. Think cashew ricotta with garlic focaccia or jackfruit sliders with house-made cheese sauce, and cocktails like the Mason’s Garden, made with gin, cucumber, basil, and lemon. Sunday brunch is also an option.

Roxanne

Alexandra Holt’s tasting menu restaurant is at once serious and playful — the chef’s fine dining culinary experience is on display in expertly composed dishes that also come with a wink. Think tomato cannolis, raclette ice cream cake with caviar, and potatoes all ways. (As Holt attests, potatoes are her favorite food.) The menu will change frequently, according to whatever Holt feels like cooking. Reservations can be booked online here.

Taco Heart

For a few hours every morning (save for Monday and Tuesday), diners on East Passyunk Avenue can pick up breakfast tacos from Taco Heart, the brick-and-mortar taco spot from pop-up taco mastermind Nano Wheedan. Wheedan makes the flour tortillas that enrobe refried pinto beans, chorizo, eggs, and avocados (among other ingredients), and they’re all recipes inspired by his time living in Austin, Texas. You can preorder online up to a week in advance online.

Milk Jawn

Everyone’s favorite pop-up ice cream purveyor has finally opened its first brick and mortar on East Passyunk, and even if it’s already fall, ice cream is good all year. The new storefront will sell pints, scoops, and cups in flavors like tahini fudge swirl; cold brew and caramelized cacao nibs; and lemon curd with blueberry basil swirl. Vegan and non-dairy options are also available.

Ocho Rios Parrilla

East Passyunk Avenue is home to some of Philly’s best restaurants and we’re lucky to have another one in the mix. Ochos Rio Parrilla is serving up Jamaican food and cocktails, like beef patties, jerk chicken, oxtail stew, and triple rum punch. Platters are large and the space is cozy — another East Passyunk gem-to-be.

Burgertime NJ

Chef Dane DeMarco’s burger restaurant, Burgertime, may be in New Jersey but who doesn’t love a road trip? A quick drive over the bridge is worth it for Burgertime and DeMarco’s menu of Tater Tots, burgers, hot dogs, and sides. Miss Philly? DeMarco’s pork roll cheesesteak burger with cherry pepper relish will remind you of home. Bonus: Almost everything on the menu can be made vegetarian or vegan.

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