The food scene in Fishtown is one of the best you’ll find in Philadelphia. Fishtown is a magnet for hipsters, creatives, and foodies. You’ll find no shortage of trendy restaurants, beer gardens, and highly-acclaimed gastro pubs along Frankford Avenue.
Arguably one of the trendiest neighborhoods in the city the riverward community has much to offer both residents and visitors. In addition to being one of Philly’s main eatery hubs, Fishtown is also known for its artistic appeal. Indie bands regularly perform at the iconic Johnny Brenda’s, an independent venue located in the heart of Fishtown.
Art galleries and studios along Frankford Avenue are open to the public on the first Friday of every month. If you’re looking for a lively night out on the town with great food but are overwhelmed by the many options available — there’s no need to fret. We’ve put together a list of 15 of the best restaurants in Fishtown.
Bringing high-end Japanese dining to Fishtown, Hiroki offers an immersive dining experience deeply rooted in tradition. Executive Chef Hiroki Fujiyama oversees the carefully curated, 20-course menu. Hiroki serves in the traditional omakase style, meaning the chef decides what will be served as the first course and creates the following courses based on the customers’ reaction to the first one.
In Japanese, omakase means to trust, or put yourself in the hands of the chef. Although its roots are in Japan, many Japanese restaurants throughout the U.S. participate in omakase dining. Hiroki guests can enjoy plates such as grilled fish and meat, sashimi, and Tamago sushi. At $155 per person, this restaurant is one of the finer ones located in Fishtown.
Izakaya By Yanaga
Placed right along Frankford Avenue, this Japanese restaurant is known for its vegetable tantan mazeman ramen and spicy miso broth. It also serves a strong rotation of small plates such as spicy yellowtail rolls, shrimp skewers, and curry short rib bao. Most tables fit only two to four people, so it's best to go during the week for a casual dinner with a friend.
Previously used as a police horse stable, this noodle and dumpling bar is a neighborhood favorite. Cheu Fishtown is considered somewhat of an unofficial clubhouse by locals and has a menu as wacky as its decorations. Mismatched wallpaper and stickers adorn the inside of the restaurant, giving it a fun, upbeat vibe. You’ll find a wide range of food choices on the menu, such as savory brisket ramen, cheesy squash rangoons, and milk bread toast.
Dawa Sushi & Ramen Bar
Located right under the El on Front Street, this 16-seat eatery serves some of the best sushi and ramen in town. Dawa is run by Chef Joseph Kim and his wife Ellie, who are of South Korean origin. Philly Mag dubbed Dawa “Philly’s New Cult-Favorite Sushi Spot” in 2019 for its unique menu and dedication to satisfying the tastebuds of the local community. If you book in advance, you can enjoy a $125 omakase and 22-course meal.
Joe’s Steaks & Soda Shop
A local favorite among residents, Joe’s Steaks & Soda Shop is one of Fishtown’s most famed eateries. Located at the beginning of Girard Avenue, this cheesesteak diner has a rich history dating back to the 50s.
The throwback-styled shop originally served only cheesesteak sandwiches but has grown its menu to include gourmet burgers, milkshakes, and a signature pineapple sundae. The shop has managed to preserve its retro layout and decor, so stepping into the diner for a casual meal feels like stepping onto the set of Grease.
Middle Child Clubhouse
Serving hearty meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Middle Child Clubhouse is an all-day eatery unique in its offerings. Enjoy an order of smoky tamarind steak fries with a group of friends while playing a few rounds of pool at Middle Child. You could also head over there on a Sunday with the family and order a short rib with pillowy eggs for brunch.
Resembling the inside of a refined warehouse, this classic American restaurant serves everything from St. Louis-style ribs to family-style BBQ platters. Fette Sau’s beef brisket and Berkshire pulled pork are customer favorites, as are burnt-end baked beans and mashed sweet potatoes. The inside of the restaurant is large enough to seat parties as they arrive, but if you’d prefer to eat outdoors, there’s also a spacious outdoor patio.
Inspired by Baja, Mexico, the menu at LMNO includes traditional, coastal Mexican cuisine such as steak aguachiles, birria dirty tacos, and pescado zarandeado. The restaurant's live-fire grill adds an extra layer of authenticity and helps cook fresh, homemade tortillas. LMNO’s aesthetic is rich in vintage accents and pastel colors. Within the spacious restaurant, visitors can explore a bookshop, an art gallery, and even a studio-style recording venue.
Sporting a large TV within view of every table, Sancho Pistola’s is the perfect place to catch a game in good company. Serving six different kinds of guacamole and a creative array of tacos, this Mexican eatery will please your tastebuds. Stop by during happy hour to enjoy $8 nachos, half-priced beers, and $15 off pitchers of margaritas.
Serving a wide range of tacos, burritos, bowls, quesadillas, and enchiladas, the menu at Loco Pez has something for everyone. Single tacos are priced between $2-$4, encouraging customers to try as many as possible. You’ll find traditional selections such as tacos al pastor and carne asada tacos, as well as original creations like tacos de pollo tinga and soy chorizo tacos. The restaurant's extensive tequila collection spans 30+ liquors, catering to tequila-drinkers all over Philly.
An award-winning restaurant, garden, and specialty market, Suraya is more of an experience than it is an eatery. Serving brunch, lunch, and dinner every day, you’ll never have to go without delicious Mediterranean food if the craving hits. Dishes are inspired by Levantine cuisine, derived from the countries of Lebanon and Cyprus. The restaurant's evening menu caters well to group dinners, given its wide range of appetizers.
Offering both vegetarians and meat-eaters a delicious selection of traditional Indian cuisine, this new restaurant is set to change the food scene in Fishtown. In 2018, the Daily Meal ranked Ekta among the Top 25 Best Indian restaurants in the country.
Serving 16 different types of naan, all cooked in a charcoal-fired tandoor oven, the eatery has certainly made itself known among the community. Its menu offers 18 vegetarian main courses, which have helped attract a wider audience. Kadai chicken, lamb saagwala, and navratan curry are among the restaurant’s most requested plates.
Recently named "Best Seafood in Philly" by Philly Mag, this elegant American bistro leaves nothing to be desired. When you’re in the mood for fresh oysters and a slow poached king salmon, put on your fanciest attire and head over to Kensington Quarters. Accompany your main course with one of the restaurant's seven different kinds of wines, served by the glass and by the bottle.
You may be surprised to find out that some of the best Italian food in Philly is hiding behind an Irish bar. Murph’s is a friendly neighborhood eatery where locals gather for small bites and craft beer. Little do newcomers know that the eatery also serves Italian entrees.
Tagliatelle with filet mignon, garganelli amatriciana taratina, and strozzapreti dominate the main course menu. Italian chef Francesco Bellastelli cooks six nights a week and has included traditional Italian desserts such as cannoli and Sicilian lemon cake into the menu.
Vegan & Vegetarian
Incorporating locally-sourced ingredients into the menu’s offerings, Primary is on a mission to “inspire healthy communities” and “connect people to real food.” Plant-based Chef Mark McKinney whips up unique plates such as the mushroom and eggplant umami burger, sticky seitan flappers, and jackfruit carnitas medianoche. The restaurant’s casual environment is well-suited for a mid-week dinner with a small group of loved ones.
Interested in Living in Fishtown?
If you’re interested in owning a piece of Fishtown real estate, don’t hesitate to contact Anthony D' Alicandro at Dwell Real Estate. As a Fishtown native and 30 year veteran real estate Broker, Anthony knows what it takes to get you the best results. We’re here to help you find the right property for you.