Night Kitchen Bakery: Amy Edelman has manned the ovens at this charming hometown spot since 2000, creating desserts inspired by Old World recipes and artisanal methods. Only high-quality chocolate, local milk and cream, and Dutch-process cocoa go into her pies, tarts, cookies, cupcakes and cakes. We love the lemon-curd cake and the salted butter-rum pudding. Quiches, frittatas, soups and salads are available mornings and afternoons.
7725 Germantown Ave., Chestnut Hill, (215) 248-9235.
Pescatore: Befitting the name—which translates to “fisherman”—expect seafood prepared in the finest rustic Italian tradition. A South Philly native, Thomas Anastasi specializes in homey, thoughtful renditions of the classics. Fresh pastas form a foundation for dishes like Nonna’s Sunday Gravy with lamb ragù; Linguine Pescatore with crab, shrimp and mussels; and fettuccine Bolognese.
134 Bala Ave., Bala Cynwyd, (610) 660-9400.
Restaurant Cerise: Ben and Elena Thomas celebrate contemporary Euro dining at their graceful BYOB. Formerly of Lacroix, Ben fashions affordable,
multicourse tasting menuswith hand-spun pastas and high-quality seafood. Expect an elaborate—and remarkably luscious—dessert finale. A noteworthy two-course prix-fixe menu is available before and after shows at the Bryn Mawr Film Institute.
1011 W. Lancaster Ave., Bryn Mawr, (610) 527-4400.
Sabrina’s Cafe: This indulgent new addition to the Wynnewood Shopping Center serves addictive comfort food for brunch, lunch and dinner in a comfy, polka-dotted setting. Menu items range from fluffy French toast and buffalo chicken salad to turkey-bacon-and-blue-cheese meatloaf. Weekend brunchers: Be sure to bring champagne for mimosas.
50 E. Wynnewood Road, Wynnewood, (484) 412-8790.
Saffron Indian Kitchen: Saffron’s two locations boast a laid-back vibe, monthly specials, convenient pre-theater hours, and excellent samosas, dosas, tikka masala and tandoori.
145 Montgomery Ave., Bala Cynwyd, (484) 278-4112; 60 E. Butler Ave., Ambler, (215) 540-0237.
Saigon Harbor: You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the inspired Vietnamese cuisine at this modest, comfortable space. The pho can be spiced to suit your taste; choose from chicken, beef, beef ball, or a deluxe mix of flank steak and brisket. Try the hearty Taste of Saigon sampler appetizer, with spring rolls, grilled shrimp, meatballs and more.
1501 West Chester Pike, Havertown, (484) 454-5105.
The Silverspoon: Executive chef Tim Courtney truly excels at assembling flavorful tasting menus with a focus on locally sourced ingredients and nose-to-tail resourcefulness. Start with a round of table snacks, including caramelized onion dip, and toasts topped with roasted Kennett Square mushrooms. Then consider the eclectic range of dinner options—like lamb Bolognese, stuffed Cavendish Farms quail, and pan-roasted trout. Mixers are available.
503 W. Lancaster Ave., Wayne, (610) 688-7646.
Sola Byob: king mackerel with braised fennel, winter citrus, pistachios and tonnato sauce
Sola BYOB: With a focus on local farms, sustainability, quality ingredients and intense preparation, executive chef Colin Mason steals the culinary show
at this French-Medi hybrid. Headliners include crispy wild striped bass with fregola sarda and saffron-laced littleneck clams. Owner Brian Engler supervises a super-classy waitstaff that’s always proficient, personal and unobtrusive.
614 W. Lancaster Ave., Bryn Mawr, (610) 526-0123.
Spence 312: At this impressive reincarnation of the highly regarded Spence Cafe, chef Andy Patten has been hard at work creating a new legacy. The uncomplicated menu features first-class renditions of familiar options like seared scallops, grilled marinated shrimp, and cioppino, plus a grilled pork chop with apple-fig chutney, and braised chicken in phyllo dough. Start with the Lancaster-sourced goat cheese, and move on to the boneless short rib in red wine demi-glace, served with a parsnip purée.Upscale comfort food at its finest.
312 S. High St., West Chester, (610) 738-8844.
Spring Mill Café: Since 1978, Michele Haines has been stealing diners’ hearts with her interpretations of the traditional French recipes handed
down by her mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Standouts include hearty pâtés, classic beef bourguignon, savory rabbit stew, cassoulet, and tarte Tatin. Everything on the menu is executed with the utmost care and precision.
164 Barren Hill Road, Conshohocken, (610) 828-2550.
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To see part five, click here.