Philadelphia, Pennsylvania isn't just one of the most historic cities in the country, it's also one of the most famous when it comes to food. Aside from being the home of the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, where America's founding fathers made history, Philadelphia is also a hip, contemporary city with plenty of places to dine. From the famous Philly cheesesteak stands, to eclectic, world-class restaurants, you're sure to find an entertaining place to eat in Philadelphia.
Geno's and Pat's
Philadelphia is famous world-wide for the Philly cheesesteak and the two most famous places sit opposite each other at the intersection of 9th and Passyunk Avenue in South Philly. Pat's King of Steaks (patskingofsteaks.com) was the first to invent the Philly cheesesteak in 1930, but not long after Geno's Steaks (genossteaks.com) opened up across the street and the two have been in a bitter rivalry ever since. Part of the fun of heading to Pat's or Geno's is mingling with tourists and even celebrities from around the country, as well as the ordering process. When ordering your cheesesteak from either place, you have to order in the local South Philly lingo. Both have signs explaining how to order. For example when ordering a cheesesteak with Cheez Whiz and fried onions you would say "one", the amount of cheesesteaks you want, "wiz", meaning you want Cheez Whiz, and "wit" meaning you want fried onions. " If you don't want onions you would say, "one wiz wit-out". You could also say "provolone" or "American" cheese instead of Cheez Whiz.
Tattooed Mom Philadelphia
You don't have to have a tattoo to be welcome in this bustling restaurant and bar with a grungy feel. Tattooed Mom (no website; 530 South St., Philadelphia; 215-238-9880) is located in the Queen's Village area of South Street. The dimly-lit restaurant is packed with eclectic decor -- including a bumper car -- provocative paintings and graffiti on the walls along with cozy couches and pool tables. The restaurant serves classic bar food such as buffalo wings and chicken fingers as well as tacos, pizza and a large selection of vegetarian options, such as vegetarian bean tacos and vegan steak sandwiches . Tattooed Mom also has daily specials and hosts community events, such as literature readings.
Heading to Marrakesh (marrakesheastcoast.com) for dinner is like being transported to another world. The Moroccan-themed restaurant aims to give diners an authentic Moroccan dining experience, and patrons are seated on rugs and served their meals family-style. No utensils are offered as the food is intended to be eaten with hands only. Plush pillows, low lighting, and lavish decor set the mood, along with the live entertainment which includes belly dancers and live Moroccan music. Guests will dine on authentic Moroccan food such as chicken and dates, lamb with chickpeas and couscous, as well as hot tea and Moroccan pastries for dessert.
Bistro Romano Mystery Theatre
Sleuthing is mixed in with your dinner at this Italian restaurant on the weekends. From the minute you enter Bistro Romano (bistroromano.com), you are part of the murder mystery interactive performance. Bistro Romano has an intimate, romantic feel with exposed brick, dark wood paneling and candle-lit tables. A set menu is offered during dinner theater performances that includes minestrone soup, four cheese rigatoni pasta and a Philly strawberry cheesecake. The musical theater production which takes place throughout dinner changes periodically and actors interact with the dinner guests. The actors provide clues to the murder mystery as the story goes on and the dinner guests must figure out who the murderer is.
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