Business Meets Brotherly Love
BY Ben Harvey
April 06 2009 12:00 AM ET
Meal Plan Notorious for its Cheez Whiz-infused steak sandwiches, Philadelphia is also home to plenty of finicky foodies and, as a result, some of the nation's finest restaurants. Le Bec-Fin (1523 Walnut St.; 215-567-1000) remains a perennial favorite among discriminating diners. Be sure to sample every item on the all-you-can-eat dessert cart if you opt for the famed five-course $145 prix fixe dinner. Not expensing dinner? Skip the luxe and head to Caribou Café (1126 Walnut St.; 215-625-9535), which features light French cuisine and, unlike Le Bec-Fin, doesn't frown on casual attire.
The incredibly chic Table 31 (1701 JFK Blvd.; 215-567-7111) is a massive power lunch spot inside the new 58-story Comcast Center office building, the reigning king of the Philly skyline. For a group luncheon, inquire about the exclusive private dining room, complete with boardroom table and flat-screen TV. After lunch, step out into the building's lobby, which flaunts a breathtaking IMAX-inspired 10 million-pixel video wall.
For more raucous gastronomics, spend a full night out at Lolita (106 S. 13th St.; 215-546-7100) for nouveau Mexican cuisine in trendier-by-the-day Midtown Village. Owned by lesbian couple Valerie Safran and Marcie Turney, Lolita is wildly popular with the BYOB set, specifically the BYOTs, because if you bring the tequila, the staff will provide home-brewed margarita mix (the blood-orange variety is a big hit). Heed the wake-up call the next morning and snag an outdoor seat at Valanni (1229 Spruce St.; 215-790-9494) for a not-too-super-schmancy Mediterranean-influenced brunch.