One of the most important things to me when I go traveling is finding a place to eat. I love to explore the local cuisine and try some foods that are new to me while exploring a new city. I’m still working on navigating the solo dining experience without feeling too awkward so most of my meals end up being on the go or during lunchtime where it’s less uncomfortable for me to eat alone. So, if on the go eating is your thing, or you’re just not 100% comfy with sitting at at table for dinner by yourself, this guide is for you!
Check out the bottom of this post for a Google Map with all of the places to eat I mention below!
This was literally around the corner from my hotel (as most of these places are) and I had never had ramen before. It was a great experience and the staff was great. Clearly I had no idea what I was doing and the waiter was incredibly helpful in deciphering the menu for me. Unfortunately, I couldn’t tell you what I got but I can say that it really was “nom nom”. Sorry, I couldn’t help myself. Really though, for being my first ramen experience, I was incredibly thrilled. I can’t wait to find a ramen place where I live.
A London style pub with gastropub type food. I had to wander in because of the name. This was a rare solo dining experience for me and I took 0 pictures. A) I was a bit scared to be “that person” and B) it was so dim inside! Perfect for the atmosphere but bad for smart phone photography. The menu is spectacular and I highly recommend any of the fish/seafood dishes. Personally, I had the smoked salmon and trout pate and it was devine. If you ever arrive before 5 they serve afternoon tea as well!
I know, I know. Pat’s is the place to go but I just didn’t make it over in that neck of the woods (I still put it on the map!). Pat’s is the original home of the Philly cheesesteak with its rival Geno’s right across the street! I ended up at Steve’s which is right near my hotel on my last night in Philly because I had totally forgotten all about getting a cheesesteak! I have no idea how that happened. Luckily, with some swift Google searching, the internet told me that this was the best place near me to grab a cheeseteak. Man, they were not wrong. As someone who normally could care less about steak, this was a bomb a$$ hoagie. I could have eaten 3.
I did not eat here but I’ve heard so many amazing things about this steakhouse that I just had to include it. If you’re staying at the Sonesta it’s in the same building!
So good, I went twice! Breakfast my first day and lunch my second. Coming from a New Yorker that can be pretty snobby about their bagels, this place was fantastic. The perfect spongy on the inside, crispy on the outside texture. What really blew me away was the cream cheese that had bits of salmon in it instead of slices of salmon on top. I wish I could have brought gallons of this stuff home with me. I didn’t take any pictures because I ate them on the move but i’m sure ya’ll know what an everything bagel looks like, right?
I wish I had these back home. These are tasty meals you shop for just like you’re in a grocery store. They’re all pre packaged and they have everything from soups, to snacks, dinners and even breakfast! And, it’s all on the go. You can heat it up in the microwaves at the store or bring it home to heat up. The weather was astonishingly beautiful for February so I grabbed a nice veggie lasagna, some juice and a small bag of chips and headed out to Rittenhouse Square to enjoy a picnic dinner.
You guys, these donuts. I can’t. They were so good, and worth the wait. Which reminds me, you need to go as soon as they open or be prepared to wait for the flavor you want. I tried the churro and the blueberry pancake donuts and I fell in love with both. The best part about Federal is that they also serve… wait for it…. fried chicken. Why fried chicken and donuts is a thing, i’ll never know. But, it’s cool and trendy and you need to try it asap so why not try it at Federal Donuts?
The mother of all ice cream parlors. I was on a mission to head to see these mosaics and I happened to walk by Big Gay Ice Cream and I couldn’t just walk by and not have any. If you’re from NYC or Philly than i’m sure you’ve heard all the buzz around this place. Let me tell you, this was the best ice cream I’ve ever had. If you like a thick, custard like ice cream then this is the place for you. Grab my new favorite American Globs which has bits of pretzel and is covered in chocolate. Salty and sweet together is the best combination but if that’s not your thing, they’ve got tons of options.
After re-reading this I think it’s abundantly clear I ate super healthy on my trip to Philadelphia, ha! When in Rome, right? If you’re headed to Philly soon, or even if you live there, you’ve got to check out these places to eat. Save the map below and it’ll take you right to all of them! Also, don’t forget to leave your Philly recommendations in the comments below so others can find them!