Philly anticipates Restaurant Week

Erica Graham

It’s that time of year again!

Restaurant Week – Philadelphia’s bi-annual tradition is only days away (Sept. 14 – Sept. 19), so if you’re thinking about taking advantage of the offers given at over 100 participating restaurants, now is the time to start making your reservations.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with this popular event; Restaurant Week occurs two weeks each year (one in the winter and one in the fall) to promote Philadelphia’s world-renowned dining scene.

A huge selection of fine restaurants offers three-course meals for either $30 or $35 (not including beverages, tax or tip).

This may seem like a large sum, especially for college students, but considering a meal at these eateries normally would cost well over $50, the Restaurant Week price is quite a discount.

The menus are usually prix fixe, meaning that the restaurant will offer a set list of selections available for each course for one price.

Unfortunately this means that not every item on the normal menu will be available.

However, you are sure to find a more-than-satisfying choice among the handful of options.

The restaurant list this year includes Bookbinders, Bistro Romano, Estia, The Melting Pot, the Oceanaire Seafood Room, Palace at the Ben, Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion, Tangerine, Tir na Nog and many more.

Reservations can be made online at, but you had better hurry because spots fill up quickly, especially at the more popular establishments.

A quick word of advice: Not all participating restaurants are equal in quality and rating, so if you are going to spend $30, you may as well choose the priciest and most elegant joint out there, such as XIX or Le Bar Lyonnais, to really make your trip worth it.

After all, it is not just about the food but about the entire experience, so make it a night!

Get dressed up, get a group of friends together and go to the city for an evening of delicious food at a restaurant that you would never even dream of going to on a normal night.

Or if you are hurting for cash, perhaps you can convince your parents to accompany you when they are here for the conclusion of Parents’ Weekend.

A list of restaurants can be found on

Here, you can do some research, view menus ahead of time and get directions.

If you cannot make it this September, don’t worry! Just look out for the next Restaurant Week coming up in January 2009.