Center City Restaurant Week Returns September 13—25 with New Takeout Options
Whether you're dining out or in, here are your best bets to enjoy CCDRW with kids!
Center City Restaurant Week is coming up September 13—25, offering diners a three-course dinner for $35, and (at some places) three-course lunch for $20 at dozens of great restaurants around town. Participating restaurants are offering their multi-course prix-fixe menus for dining in (or, more likely, al fresco, though some limited indoor seating is available). And this year, for the first time, some restaurants are also offering the option to take advantage of the deals with takeout!
While this modification is due to COVID-19 limitations and concerns, it has a secondary effect for parents—the world is our oyster (literally, if we get swanky takeout from The Olde Bar). In normal times, Restaurant Week means either hiring a babysitter (canceling out the discounted menu) or—with our expert help—being strategic and picking kid-friendly menus and places. Which is great, and which we are still going to help you do, because going places is very exciting these days, let’s be honest. Plus, since most dining is outdoors, you might be able to be a little more flexible in where you take the family (though you’ll definitely need a reservation since seating is very limited).
But, additionally, if you can’t grab that reservation—or if you just want to eat some fancy adult food and cocktails at home while you hand your toddler a PB&J because you are living your best #QuarantineLife—we are including a section on that below too! So, mask up, pack extra hand sanitizer, tip well, and let’s get started!
225 S. 18th St.
Participating in lunch, dinner, and takeout, this Rittenhouse Square standby lets you get fancy with views of the park—so why not treat your mopey virtual schooler to some steak frites and carrot cake, both included in $20 lunch? If your little one isn’t interested in three courses, get them chicken tenders or mac & cheese off the kids’ menu for just $10, and treat yourself—plus a cocktail or two. Even better, you can dine on the sidewalk (be sure to get reservations) or do takeout and have a picnic in the park!
1234 Locust St.
Participating in dinner and takeout, this retro American comfort food spot has plenty of options for your inner child and your actual child. The cheese curds are a must, and throw in some of their whimsical cocktail pouches for yourself while you’re at it! Since they’re located on the corner, they wrap around with plenty of outdoor dining options, but reservations are still required, so be sure to grab one if you’re not doing takeout.
106 S. 13th St.
Here’s a little tip for you all: while Lolita is in fact participating in $35 three-course Restaurant Week dinner (lots of sidewalk seating to those with a reservation) and takeout, they’ve actually been offering a $29 three-course dinner menu since reopening during the pandemic! So, there’s no reason to wait until Restaurant Week to enjoy options like fresh guacamole, nachos, enchiladas, and fish tacos! Put your saved $6 toward a margarita or sangria pitcher (you can even do to-go cocktails, if you’re doing takeout instead of dining there).
2034 Chestnut Street
Come for outdoor dinner or takeout, and indulge in dishes like Pretzel Monkey Bread, cheeseburgers, pasta, and steak. Save room for dessert, because dessert awaits—funfetti cheesecake or the giant cast iron chocolate chip cookie a la mode? Decisions, decisions.
1316 Chestnut St.
Next door to each other, BRU (and Tradesman’s next door) have set up outdoor picnic-style tables that make them welcoming to all ages, especially on for an early evening Restaurant Week dinner. BRU’s Bavarian-style menu of wurst, pretzels, and other favorites reminiscent of Oktoberfest are sure to please– and the price is friendly enough that you can sample their impressive beer menu.
Now it really gets fun, because if the grownups want to indulge in an impromptu at-home date night after bedtime (or just eat more complex foods than the kids will tolerate), you can get takeout just for you!
600 N. Broad St.
Upscale Southern comfort food means your family can pick up cornbread, fried chicken, mac & cheese, and more. And, yes, you can also add cocktails to your takeout order—including the refreshing Southern Peach Daquiri.
1716 Chestnut St.
Gran Caffe L’Aquila really gets us, because their $20 lunch and $35 dinner menus have optional wine pairings listed for each item. So in addition to Italian favorites like bruschette, burrata, arancini, cannoli, and many pastas, you can add wine from their pandemic-era Market, which also sells Italian gourmet snacks, cheeses, and more for home enjoyment.
1713 South St.
Pumpkin is offering a daily changing three-course takeout dinner for $35, full of locally sourced and sustainable food. Because their menu changes every day, we can’t say exactly what their Restaurant Week offerings will be, but the good news is that this pricing will remain past Restaurant Week!
125 Walnut St.
Head to the iconic Old Original Bookbinder’s building–and then leave with your upscale $20 lunch or $35 dinner. Oysters, lobster roll, even crab fries with actual crab (no judgment, Chickie’s & Pete’s) are on the menu. If your kids want to partake, but aren’t into shellfish, items like fried chicken and burgers are also on the Restaurant Week menu, along with dessert everyone will like. And, again, if you are taking out, The Olde Bar has an entire Cocktails To Go menu. Bonus tip: when it’s not Restaurant Week, The Olde Bar is offering home Date Night kits, including a make-at-home lobster kit for two!
217-219 Chestnut St.
Where to begin with this treasure trove of tapas? First off, both the $20 lunch menu and the $35 dinner menu are extremely generous with their variety and quantity. I seriously had to double-check that takeout was, in fact, allowed on these deals. The most difficult part of choosing Amada for Restaurant Week is narrowing it down, but you probably already have your favorite dishes. Adding on Sangria to go is never a bad idea.
Lead photograph courtesy of Visit Philadelphia.