These Are the Best New Restaurants in Philadelphia’s Western Suburbs

The Main Line region's culinary landscape continues to grow and prosper. We rank our favorite fresh arrivals.

1. De La Terre

This year’s top new restaurant may not be a cheap night out, but you get what you pay for. Chef Andrew Hufnagel’s exquisite French cuisine is worth every cent, and the service is old-school exceptional. Flavors, textures and presentation all combine for sublime culinary artistry, even for something as seemingly basic as onion soup. Our short list: the kombu-poached shrimp, charcoal-fired octopus, crispy sea trout and braised rabbit. 47 W. Lancaster Ave., Downingtown, (610) 269-2431, delaterrebyob.com.

Caviar done right at De La Terre.
Caviar done right at De La Terre. Photo by Ed Williams.

2. Sweet Amelia’s

Karessa and Zach Hathaway’s shared plates begin with local ingredients. You won’t find many apps as unique as the chicken-skin tea sandwich (on white bread with peri-peri dipping sauce). Vegans will love the roasted sweet potato (with tahini dressing, pomegranate and mint), and carnivores will swoon over any of the larger beef, fish or pork plates. Desserts are exquisite, and wine by the glass or bottle is available from Downingtown’s R Five Wines. 102 E. State St., Kennett Square, (484) 732-7943, sweetameliasksq.com

3. At The Table

Alex and Tara Hardy already had a good thing going at their original Louella Court BYOB. Now the award-winning duo is working out of a dream kitchen in an ideal location along Lancaster Avenue. Four times as large as the previous space, the new At the Table boasts an oyster bar, seating for 100 guests and a hard-earned liquor license (BYOB is still an option). With Michelin-reviewed restaurants as their inspiration, the Hardys continue to turn out inventive, upscale seafood-focused plates. 118 W. Lancaster Ave., Wayne, (610) 964-9700, atthetablebyob.com.

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At The Table
Photo by Ed Williams

4. The Pullman Restaurant & Bar

This trackside transformation of the former Tango restaurant hinges on a spectacular makeover from Villanova-based interior designer Barbara Balongue that celebrates the golden age of rail travel. Romantic lighting, arched ceilings, a vivid-blue baby grand piano and classy live music combine for an upscale speakeasy ambiance. Executive chef Corey Baver works his New American magic in the kitchen, with notable help from pastry artiste Kristin Bailey. 39 Morris Ave., Bryn Mawr, (610) 727-0777, thepullmanrestaurant.com.

5. Amada Radnor

From his snazzy new location in the former Harvest Seasonal Grill & Wine Bar, celebrity chef Jose Garces brings an ample portion of his signature Latin hospitality to the Main Line. Highlights include spiced-lamb turnovers, truffle croquettes and other traditional tapas options, along with flatbreads and authentic grilled dishes like Iberico pork skewers. We’re partial to the made-to-share paellas—chicken and rabbit or short rib and mushroom. Feeling adventurous? Call ahead 72 hours for the suckling pig. It’s a feast you won’t soon forget. 555 E. Lancaster Ave., Wayne, (484) 429-2158, amadarestaurant.com/amada-radnor.

Amada’s chicken and rabbit paella.
Amada’s chicken and rabbit paella. Courtesy of Garces Group.

6. Rosemary

A long-shuttered ’70s pool hall is now Delaware County’s most talked-about restaurant. Chef Elijah Milligan excels with his inventive mix of small and large plates centered around pasta, steaks and fresh seafood. Kick off the evening with a signature tequila-based Rosemary cocktail. For a sunny brunch, try the greenhouse garden room. 25 E. Hinckley Ave., Ridley Park, (610) 671-3770, rosemaryrp.com.

Rosemary’s rock shrimp bucatini.
Rosemary’s rock shrimp bucatini. Photo by Ed Williams.

7. Daniel’s Restaurant + Cocktail Bar

Just off Conshohocken’s busy main drag, the cozy, intimate space at Daniel’s affords an out-of-the-way experience. Executive chef James Chun makes a mean grilled romaine, with pickled onion, shaved Parmesan, grilled bread and Parmesan crisp. Other exceptional offerings include the twice-cooked octopus, vegan satay, banana-leaf swordfish and a dumpling of the day. 16 E. 1st Ave., Conshohocken, (610) 941-4652, daniels-conshohocken.com.

Prepping the twice-cooked octopus at Daniel’s.
Prepping the twice-cooked octopus at Daniel’s. Photo by Ed Williams.

8. Ground Provisions

Working out of the Inn Keeper’s Kitchen of Historic Dilworthtown, Richard Landau and Kate Jacoby of Center City’s Vedge bring vegan vivacity to bucolic Chester County. Ground Provisions’ nine-table reservation-only dining experience has become a tough get, thanks to a superb seasonal menu that spotlights fresh ingredients from local purveyors. The general store showcases organic offerings from around the region and a global selection of small-batch products. 1388 Wilmington Pike, West Chester, (610) 355-4411, groundprovisionspa.com.

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9. Exit 13 Gastrobar

We love a new restaurant with a fun visual hook, and this new spot provides just that—plus a solid lineup of food and drink. Luciano Di Felice utterly transformed his dad’s former pizza joint, topping its bar stools with Vespa seats and mounting colorful scooters on every wall. The well-executed tavern fare includes wings, pasta and, not surprisingly, great pizza. 910 Conestoga Road, Bryn Mawr, (610) 525-3842, exit13gastrobar.com.

Exit 13’s Speeding Vespa cocktail.
Exit 13’s Speeding Vespa cocktail. Photo by Ed Williams.

10. Cafe Baladi

This Best of the Main Line & Western Suburbs winner wows loyal patrons with its dynamic Lebanese cuisine. Chef Imad Slim and his family keep things fresh and authentic. The beef is halal compliant, and you won’t find better falafel or hummus anywhere. Must-try dishes include the cinnamon rice, bone-in lamb shank and chicken skewers. Save room for the house-made baklava. 235 Lancaster Ave., Malvern, (856) 272-6339, cafebaladirestaurant.com.

11. Dua Mediterranean Kitchen

At this charming two-story spot, chef Bledar Istrefi curates a tantalizing mix of Greek, Southern Italian, Israeli and Albanian fare. For newbies, we recommend the paella (with octopus, calamari, shrimp, chicken and mussels), the Za’atar Chicken (a grilled breast over Israeli couscous) and the kosher lamb shank. The atmosphere is intimate, and stellar service punctuates the experience. 1000 W. Lancaster Ave., Bryn Mawr, (484) 380-2053, duarest.com.

Fresh pasta at Dua Mediterranean Kitchen.
Fresh pasta at Dua Mediterranean Kitchen.

12. Rivertown Taps

The self-serve beer wall may be the novelty here, but it’s owner Lewis Leiterman’s kitchen prowess that leaves a lasting impression. Regulars swear by the French onion cheese curds, seared octopus, burrata with honeynut squash, and signature chicken and waffles. The popular monthly “chef series” dinners support local charities. 226 Bridge St., Phoenixville, (484) 924-9112, rivertowntaps.com.

13. The Blue Elephant

At Pearl Somboonsong’s latest work of art, the spacious two-story design fully embraces an urban vibe, with a chic blend of traditional and contemporary elements and a stunning entryway. The menu is a thoughtful, spirited mix of Asian and Italian cuisine, with standouts like massaman short rib and eggplant teriyaki. Kick off your big night out with a premium sake flight. 110 N. Wayne Ave., Wayne, (484) 580-6142, blueelephantwayne.com.

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14. The Cage

You won’t feel trapped in this retro-leaning cocktail bar/eatery. The place is utterly gorgeous—more of a tropical sanctuary, with a lush green palette and artificial plantings, bamboo-backed bar seats, light wood accents, and a playful bird cage motif. The evolving menu at its newest location in Norristown features flatbreads, rice bowls, brick-oven pizzas, Korean tacos and more. Among the many drink highlights: the Gate-4 Old Fashioned, the Break-Free Bloody Mary and a bang-up espresso martini. 711 S. Trooper Road, Norristown; (267) 652-7777; 855 Easton Road, Warrington, (267) 485-1111; thecagecocktailbar.com.

The Cage
Courtesy of The Cage

15. Mia Ragazza

Sean Coyle has enjoyed sustained success with his Goat’s Beard gastropubs in Manayunk and Wayne. Now, he and Brendan McGrew (Bourbon Blue) are banking on another Main Street winner with the thoroughly Italian Mia Ragazza. Menu standouts include meatballs, Roman-style pizzas (short rib, burnt pepperoni, shrimp and artichoke) and a slew of handmade pasta options. The prime location offers romantic nooks and a rooftop with great views of the action below. 4411 Main St., Manayunk, (267) 323-2143, miaragazzaphilly.com.

16. Anchan Thai Cuisine

This Southeast Asian charmer balances the best sweet, sour and spicy notes with a remarkable presentation. You’ll take comfort in the coconut-based tom kha gai soup, and the massaman curry and drunken noodles offer exceptional flavor and texture. Fun fact: The blue color of the rice in some dishes is derived from butterfly pea flowers, which contain natural antioxidants and may offer health benefits. 126 Bala Ave., Bala Cynwyd, (610) 664-2438, anchancuisine.com.

17. VK Brewing Co. & Eatery

Breathing a new life into the former Ship Inn, military veterans turned restaurateurs Jason Van Keuren and Najib Abiaad offer an extensive and impressive microbrewery menu that includes shishito peppers with Italian sausage and goat cheese crema, pulled pork nachos, brick-oven pizzas, a juicy Italian roast pork sandwich, and more. The brewery took shape in the garage out back. The list now includes 16 unique, highly rated beers. 693 Lincoln Hwy. E., Exton, (484) 873-3199, vkbrewing.com.

18. Steaks West Chester

His minimalist Pizza West Chester a certified underground smash, Speer Madanat is working the same simple magic with shaved ribeye, fried onions and Cooper Sharp cheese. Some say it’s the bread that makes the cheesesteak—especially if it’s a seeded roll from James Beard nominee Anthony Andiario. There’s no website, but the place is easy to find—just look for the line of customers streaming out the door. 698 E. Market St., West Chester, (484) 373-5500.

Steaks West Chester
Steaks West Chester is one of the best new restaurants in the region. Photo by Ed Williams

19. Villa Artigiano Ristorante

Quietly taking over the space occupied for years by A la Maison Bistro, the Kupa family has conceived an outstanding manifestation of the old-school Italian experience. Burrata, calamari, grilled artichokes and a slew of fresh salads set the tone. Traditional pasta options include lobster ravioli, penne vodka, linguine pescatore and more. Opt for a whole branzino, or have it filleted tableside. (We weren’t kidding about the old-school part.) 53 W. Lancaster Ave., Ardmore, (484) 414-4997, villaartigiano.com.

Related: Where to Get a Great Cup of Hot Chocolate Around the Main Line

Our Best of the Main Line & Western Suburbs Party is July 25!