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The Philadelphia Food Scene: A Magnet for Foodie Tenants

Whether you live in Philadelphia, you’re visiting, or are looking to move there, you may be familiar with some of the popular foods available there. If you’re craving an authentic Philly cheesesteak, a famous figure-8-shaped pretzel, or water ice for dessert, the Philadelphia food scene has it going on. In today’s article, we’ll review some of the best Philly foods, the most popular restaurants, and top neighborhoods for foodie tenants. 


Contents of This Article: 

What’s the Best Food in Philadelphia?

Philadelphia is known for many things, including its diverse and delicious food scene. Philadelphia is known for several famous dishes, each with its own unique characteristics. While our property managers in Philadelphia have their favorites, some of the most iconic and must-try foods in the city include the following.

  • Philly Cheesesteak- Arguably, the most iconic food in Philly is the Philly Cheesesteak. This dish originated in Philadelphia and consists of thinly sliced beefsteak cooked on a griddle, topped with melted cheese, often garnished with sauteed onions, and served on a long roll.


  • Soft Pretzels- Soft pretzels are another beloved snack in Philadelphia, distinguished from others by their figure-8 shape. You can find the best pretzels around from street vendors, neighborhood corner stores, or bakeries like City Center Pretzel Co.
  • Water Ice- Similar to Italian ice, water ice is a frozen dessert made from fruit or syrup with finely shaved ice. It has a smooth and icy texture and comes in a variety of flavors, which you can find at traditional shops like John’s Water Ice.
  • Hoagies- Another popular sandwich in Philly is a classic hoagie, consisting of meat, cheese, and veggies served on a long roll. This combination of fresh ingredients and a well-crafted roll makes for a satisfying and portable meal.
  • Roast Pork Sandwich- While less famous than the cheesesteak or hoagie, the roast pork sandwich is a signature Philly food for many locals. It consists of slow-roasted pork served on a roll and topped with sharp provolone cheese and sauteed greens like broccoli rabe or spinach.
  • Scrapple- Scrapple is a breakfast dish made of a mixture of pork, spices, and cornmeal sliced and pan-fried until crispy. It’s a unique dish with roots in Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine and is often enjoyed as a side dish for breakfast.

Most Popular Restaurants in Philadelphia

Now that we’ve gone over some of the famous foods in Philadelphia, you’re probably wondering where you can find them. Here are some of the most popular restaurants in Philadelphia, where they’re located, and what they’re known for. 


If you’re looking for authentic Israeli cuisine, Zahav is the place to go–if you can get a reservation. This popular spot in Philadelphia is known for its innovative approach to Israeli cuisine. Furthermore, it offers a diverse menu featuring signature dishes like hummus with various toppings, wood-grilled meats, fresh salads, and mezze. 

  • 237 St. James Place
  • Philadelphia, PA 19106
  • Open Tues-Sat, 5 pm to 9:30 pm



Kalaya is a highly acclaimed restaurant in Philly known for its authentic Thai cuisine. Renowned for its bold and flavorful dishes, Kalaya offers a diverse menu featuring dumplings, tropical cocktails, and innovative beer slushies. This restaurant is so popular due to its ability to maintain authenticity while introducing creative elements to traditional Thai cooking, making it a popular destination for those seeking a genuine Thai dining experience in Philly. 

  • 4 W Palmer St
  • Philadelphia, PA 19125
  • Open seven days a week!


Laurel in South Philadelphia is a renowned restaurant led by Chef Nicholas Elmi. Known for its French-inspired American cuisine, Laurel offers a curated dining experience with a modern a la carte menu. Their restaurant features inventive and beautifully presented dishes, like paprika aioli-spiced mussels, scallops in oyster cream, and wagyu beef culotte. Keep in mind that you’ll want to make a reservation to ensure you secure a seat in this popular Philadelphia restaurant.

  • 1617 E Passyunk Ave
  • Philadelphia, PA 19148
  • Open Wed-Sat, 5 pm to 10 pm 


Friday Saturday Sunday

Friday Saturday Sunday is an iconic Philly establishment, one of the longest-running restaurants in the city. This popular spot is known for its contemporary American cuisine and has been a fixture in the Rittenhouse Square neighborhood for years. Additionally, this year, the fine dining establishment even won the James Beard Award for Outstanding Restaurant. So, if you’re looking for a luxurious eight-course tasting menu, Friday Saturday Sunday is the place to go.

  • 261 South 21st St
  • Philadelphia, PA 19103
  • Open Wed-Sun

My Loup

Craving an authentic, modern French dining experience? My Loup is among the most popular new restaurants in Philly. Their menu changes daily, offering an ever-changing, modern French menu that’s pleasantly unpredictable yet somehow very familiar. Whether you’re trying their half-roasted chicken, halibut, or their “Let Us Cook For You” option, you’re bound to get an excellent-tasting meal, satisfying enough to keep you coming back for more.

  • 2005 Walnut St
  • Philadelphia, PA 19103
  • Open Mon-Fri, 5 pm to 10 pm 

Gabriella’s Vietnam

If you’re looking for an authentic Vietnamese taste with excellent presentation, Gabriella’s Vietnam is the place to go. This popular restaurant is well-known for its open-faced dumplings served in individual bowls topped with crackled pork and shrimp with authentic sides. Here, you can find large-format dishes, from the half-chicken platter to Vietnamese fried winter flounder. None of it will be a letdown! Keep in mind that it’s a BYOB establishment, so come prepared. 

  • 1837 East Passyunk Ave
  • Philadelphia, PA 19148
  • Open Tues-Sun

How the Philadelphia Food Scene Attracts New Tenants

Prospective tenants look for a number of things while looking at new areas to live. That said, Philadelphia’s diverse food scene is crucial in attracting new tenants to the city.


The culinary landscape, ranging from iconic cheesesteaks and soft pretzels to innovative fine dining establishments, contributes to the overall appeal. 

Additionally, food events, festivals, and a thriving restaurant culture create a wonderful sense of community, contributing to the overall lifestyle that potential tenants find attractive. You may have seen your favorite food blogger or influencer share their thoughts on one of the many iconic Philly foods. Whether you’ve visited the area or want to move here, there’s something for everyone in this large, bustling city!

Top Neighborhoods for Foodie Tenants

Food and restaurants are major attractions for many tenants moving to a new city. That said, Philadelphia is a city of neighborhoods, many of which are associated with certain styles of food. So, if you’re looking for a rental in the city, you’ll want to know some of the key restaurant hotspots in Philly

  • Center City- City Center, the heart of Philadelphia, is a culinary hub offering a diverse range of dining experiences. From high-end restaurants to iconic food markets like the Reading Terminal Market, City Center caters to various tastes, making it a great place for food enthusiasts.
  • South Philly- South Philly is renowned for its iconic Italian Market, providing an array of fresh produce, cheeses, and traditional Italian dishes. Additionally, this neighborhood is known for its cheesesteak establishments, offering a rich and authentic taste of Philadelphia.
  • West Philly- West Philly has an excellent mix of international cuisines, reflecting its cultural diversity. With a vibrant food scene in the University City section, this area caters to students and locals with excellent fast-casual eateries and more.
  • Chinatown- Philadelphia’s Chinatown is a must-stop place for lovers of Chinese cuisine. From Chinese hand-pulled noodles to Vietnamese spring rolls, this neighborhood offers a taste of China in the heart of the city.
  • Northeast Philly- Northeast Philadelphia provides a variety of dining options ranging from casual to upscale. Additionally, with a mix of international cuisines and American classics, this area offers a diverse culinary experience for residents.
  • Northwest Philly- Northwest Philadelphia features a mix of neighborhoods, each offering a unique dining scene. From historic Chestnut Hill to the cultural hub of Germantown, residents can explore a range of restaurants, cafes, and bakeries in this diverse area.

Making a Move to Philadelphia? 

If you’re looking to move to Philadelphia, you may be curious about what foods and restaurants you can look forward to while living there. Luckily, the Philadelphia food scene is quite diverse, giving residents a wide variety of excellent options to choose from. You’re bound to find something you love!

Looking for a rental property in Philadelphia? If so, check out Bay Property Management Group’s current listings. Perhaps you’ll find your perfect rental near your desired food choices.

Need More Advice? contact us today!

On the other hand, if you own rentals near the Philadelphia area, you could benefit from our comprehensive rental management services. So, from tenant screening to maintenance, rent collection, and more, we can handle the entire rental process. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you!