The Top Restaurants in Center City Philadelphia

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Brian Kent, Esq. - PA Abuse Guardian

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This brief reports on some of the best restaurants in the Center city region of downtown Philadelphia is presented by the experienced PA sexual assault attorneys comprising Abuse Guardian.

Most folks who call Philadelphia their home are already familiar with its widely popular food scene. It’s not difficult to see why, and while it is true that the city also boasts some attractions that would make any visitor want to move here, the restaurants are consistently what keep them coming back. We share some of the most popular ones next.


Sampan is a Pan-Asian restaurant located on South 13th Street. It has often been called an “oasis” of tiny plates right in the middle of Center City Philly, in its renowned Midtown Village area. Its stunning mural sets the scene for meals, appearing out of the centrally located kitchen of the restaurant while a curated collection of beer, wine, sake and cocktails match guests’ experiences.

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Accompanying this popular restaurant is a back-alley sister restaurant known as the Graffiti Bar which first came on the scene in 2010.It boasts an open concept through as weather permits in a couple of seasons throughout the year. Its decoration is likewise captivating and is marked by its entrance, which is a chainlink fence alley surrounded by a mural. Finally, to set the scene, the notoriously beautiful glow of candlelight along with heat lamps for those cold nights make it an ideal place not only for happy hour drinks and food but a special dinner as well.

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El Vez

This famous mexican “restaurante” is remembered for its frenetic decoration, including a velvet bicycle atop its center bar looking over the entire dining space. The velvety Hollywood booths create truly ideal conditions for enjoying meals and traditionally tasty Mexican drinks such as margaritas and imported beers.

The menu is marked by interpretations of classic dishes directly from Mexico that also boast contemporary twists. Perhaps most notably, all plates can be accompanied by any of the sought-after tequilas that form part of the extensive menu and which are not often encountered anywhere else in Center City.

El Vez can be found at 121 S 13th St and can be visited Monday to Sunday from around 11AM to 11PM. Those wishing to visit on weekend nights should always consider making reservations, as crowds can accumulate. Not to say the locale isn’t big enough, it actually possesses quite a large capacity, it simply fills up, a clear sign of its quality.


Zahav restaurant, located at 237 St. James Place in the Old City region of Center city Philadelphia, is the brainchild of Israel-born chef Michael Solomon.

At Zahav, Chef Solomon uses mostly small plates as a method for encouraging guests to try the wide expanse of tastes and flavors that have influenced the menu. Indeed, Chef Solomon hopes to demonstrate how these same influences have positively affected Israel’s culture itself and, naturally, reverberated to one of the strongest fabrics tying a culture together – its food.

Guests to Zahav in Philadelphia, PA will have the chance to enjoy different kinds of meat cooked over charcoal made of hardwood which, as you may or may not know, imparts quite a desirable flavor. Also recommended is the crowd favorite at this top restaurant, laffa bread, which of course is baked in-house in a specialty oven.

As we suggested in our previous highlight, it is widely recommended to reserve a table ahead as Zahav is such a unique and highly esteemed locale that it can be quite difficult to show up unannounced and still be served. Nevertheless, the up-front effort will undoubtedly pay off.

As we finish talking about Center City restaurants, move on to read: Our Favorite Restaurants In North Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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