Pharm2Philly is a local Philadelphia-based blog and community that is collaborating with Philadelight. Be sure to follow Pharm2Philly for updates on new restaurants and happenings in Philadelphia.
Vernalicious, once a most beloved and popular local food truck, has gone brick-and-mortar in South Philadelphia. Chef Verna Swerdlow runs the kitchen in this corner take-out or eat-in BYOB restaurant at the corner of Front and Ritner in the Whitman neighborhood. The space is small and unassuming, but the food is always fresh and delicious and the service is warm and welcoming.
Whether you live in the neighborhood or come from out of town, the pulled pork grilled cheese from Vernalicious is an absolute must-try. That said, the vegetable and salad are the true star of the many dishes in the restaurant. Chef Swerdlow really knows how to bring out the brightness and flavors in a salad.
Vernalicious is the place to be if you’re looking for a true hidden gem tucked into a small corner of a quiet neighborhood.
101 W Ritner St
Philadelphia, PA 19148
Hours: Wednesday-Sunday 12-7pm
Do you want to experience the Zahav taste without having to wait idly for a bar seat or wait 2 months for an impossible reservation?
Musi, is an intimate BYOB restaurant in South Philadelphia where chef Ari Miller pioneers relationship-based cuisine, focusing on the farmers, foragers, and makers supplying the goods for his peak-season and flavor-packed plates. Chef Ari Miller is an alum of both Zahav and High Street on Market. Named for chef Ari Miller’s legendary fishmonger in Tel Aviv, Musi is pioneering relationship-based cuisine, where food is an expression of the people and community it takes to nourish us all.
Musi’s small, daily menu offers guests the opportunity to choose a few plates on their own or simply let the kitchen cook for them. The service is about seasonality and story as much as geography and region. Each plate is intentional and represents our relationships to the farmers, foragers, makers and artisans who inspire us with unique products and one of a kind collaborations.
Musi made the list of 50 best restaurant in Philadelphia and received high praises from Craig Laban.
The Oregon Market (Ben Thanh) located at 320 W Oregon ave in the Whitman neighborhood of South Philadelphia is a supermarket that focuses on imported Asian condiments, beverages, snacks, and fresh fruits, vegetables, meats and fish.
This Asian supermarket and plaza is located next to Whitman Plaza (Septa bus routes 47, 57, G, 7 runs in the area). This Oregon ave spot is not quite developed and pedestrian friendly, but it is transforming. Oregon Market is an interesting place in itself. It’s an excellent place to shop for different spices or condiments or get deals on fresh produce. The market is located near Shoprite in Whitman Plaza and Aldi is only a few blocks away. A smart shopper can take a trip to all three stores and get the best prices on the freshest grocery.
In addition to housing the popular Asian supermarket, the Oregon Market plaza is home to some local businesses such as Pho Ha Saigon (an excellent Vietnamese pho restaurant), Banh Mi Square (a Vietnamese sandwich and coffee shop), and Mr. Wish (a bubble tea/boba store).
Some businesses in Oregon Market Plaza:
Oregon Market – Asian groceries and super market (320 W Oregon Ave, Unit #1, 215-336-5858)
Pho Ha Saigon – Vietnamese pho restaurant (320 W Oregon Ave, Unit # 215-389-1002)
Banh Mi Square – Vietnamese banh mi sandwich shop and coffee (320 W Oregon Ave, Unit #3, 267-273-0986)
Mr. Wish – Bubble tea, boba, fruit tea store (320 W Oregon Ave, Unit #5, 267-606-6868)
Yumi Skin Care – Asian cosmetics and skincare store (320 W Oregon Ave Unit #, 215-468-3848)
Anchor Real Estate Development – Real estate development store
South Bowl boasts cutting edge bowling lanes, pool tables, arcade games, roof deck bar, and an amazing kitchen – all in a spot in South Philly with plenty of on-site parking. It has its own sit-down pizza lounge, which receives high praises. These are probably some of the reasons South Bowl won PhillyMag’s Best of Philly in 2016 for best bowling alley. Did we mention the bar and bowling happy hour?
More recently, South Bowl opened up the Yard at South Bowl — an ultimate backyard concept that includes the addition of outdoor games such as batting cages, a bocce court, shuffleboard, horseshoes, billiards, swings, outdoor lounge areas, and additional arcade games. A shipping container has also been added to house a new outdoor bar in addition to the existing rooftop bar and full bars inside.
South Bowl’s brand new bocce court is already in play. And if you want to get competitive, the bocce league meets every Wednesdays at South Bowl during the spring, summer & fall seasons.
19 East Oregon Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19148
Mr. Wish is popular bubble tea and fruit beverage franchise that has made its way to the United States from Taiwan. There are currently five Mr. Wish stores in Philadelphia, including the Northeast, Temple, Chinatown, Rittenhouse and Washington Ave in South Philly. A sixth Philadelphia store is coming soon to 3rd and Oregon, in the Oregon Market next to Whitman Plaza. It should be interesting for this new Mr. Wish shop to set up in the Oregon Market plaza as there is already a Pho restaurant (Pho Ha Saigon) that serves boba smoothies and a Vietnamese bakery/sandwich shop (Banh Mi Square) that serves Vietnamese coffee and assorted drinks.
Oregon Market plaza is a prime spot for the popular bubble tea/boba store as there is ample parking in this underdeveloped, up-and-coming part of South Philly.
Mr. Wish on Oregon Ave soft opens on Wednesday, May 15, 2019. The grand opening is this weekend, with a buy one get one free special for their special tea.
320 W Oregon Ave, Unit 5
Philadelphia, PA 19148
Mifflin Square Park is a historic park in Southeast Philadelphia, originally built in the 1890s. Located in one of Philadelphia’s most diverse neighborhoods, the park is a center of neighborhood life and one of the few large open greenspaces in South Philly.
Despite the many years since the park’s initial creation, much of it remains similar to how it was laid out in the 1890s. The park is heavily used, but this use has led to many of the features of the park being worn down and in need of replacement and renovation.
Beginning in November 2016, Southeast Philadelphia residents and organizations came together to imagine the future of Mifflin Square Park. Since then, hundreds of residents have shared experiences, memories, ideas, and opinions to create the ‘Making Room for Everyone’ concept design that was released in 2018 and will guide the reconstruction of the park in future phases. This design can be seen here: https://mifflinsquareplan.org.
In 2020, the Philadelphia Water Department will be reconstructing the four corner entrances of the park as part of a large green infrastructure project. This project, part of the City’s larger Green City, Clean Waters program, will help to recreate living landscapes in the City and reduce stormwater pollution entering our waterways. This project provides an amazing opportunity to begin implementing the shared community vision for Mifflin Square Park.
As part of this renovation of the four corners of the park, a new plaza will be created at 6th Street and West Ritner Street. Neighborhood residents have expressed a desire for the plaza to include decorative pavers to define a real entryway to the park. To fund this improvement, along with decorative paving at each of the three other corners of Mifflin Square, we are fundraising with the amazing perks listed here, including the opportunity to have your name or organization’s name engraved in the entryway to the park! Donors who contribute at least $200 can have their name, their organization’s name, or another’s name preserved as a lasting legacy to your help in implementing the community’s shared vision for the park.
Any funds raised beyond the cost of funding the installations of new pavers into the park will go towards further park improvements and programming.
The perks available as a thank you for contributing to the future of Mifflin Square Park are listed to the right. These improvements would be installed in concert with the Philadelphia Water Department’s corner improvements in Fall 2020.
On Philly Revival, Rachel Street, a local realtor, general contractor and designer saves best part of Philadelphia’s quaint, century old homes and using those pieces to transform them into show-stopping one of-a-kind properties. From original floors and fixtures, to hidden treasures in the walls, Rachel makes sure every house keeps its original charm.
On season 1, episode 3, Rachel Street tackles a tiny row home in South Philly’s Whitman district. After extending the second floor to add an additional 150 square feet, she makes the space seem brighter and larger by white washing the interior brick and using light colors for the floors and cabinetry. Finally, to infuse some Philadelphia history, she restores a 150-year-old salvaged door and incorporates it into the design. Watch the episode on the DIY network and become inspired.
Expect an increase in investment and property values in South Philadelphia in 2020. Many stakeholders have invested in large projects in the area, particularly around the stadium district and eastern South Philly.
Here are some major projects coming soon in zip code 19147/19148:
Live! Hotel and Casino at 900 Packer Ave: The $700 million casino and hotel is expected to be completed by the end of 2020. The long delayed construction begins in 2019.
Pattison Place beside Xfinity Live! at 1100 Pattison Ave: The glass-sheathed office tower will encompass at least 200,000 square feet and is the first step toward developing the sprawling property in the South Philadelphia stadium district. Also included in the proposal are 20,000 square feet of street-level retail at the site to the immediate west of Xfinity Live. Find out more on Philly.com.
South Columbus Boulevard center redevelopment, starting with a $12 million renovation of UA Riverview Plaza. The center spans the western side of South Columbus Boulevard, from Washington Avenue to Dickinson Street, in the city’s Pennsport neighborhood. Cedar Realty Trust plans to redevelop the center over 7-10 years in three phases, the first two of which will consist of about 260 apartments and 125,000 square feet of retail. This mixed-use project made up of apartments sitting over street retail will feature some of the finest river views in all of Philadelphia. Cedar anticipate launching this project in the first half of 2019.
South Quarter Crossing on the west side of South Philadelphia: Cedar Realty Trust will redevelop and merge Quartermaster and South Philadelphia Shopping Center into a single one million-square-foot shopping and residential complex. Click here to see their leasing plan.
Another South Philly diner will be ending its 24-hour service. Oregon Diner, a Whitman Philadelphia staple at 3rd and Oregon ave, will be limiting its hours due to staffing difficulties. The diner, which also serves alcohol, used to be open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It will now be open from 6am-midnight from Sunday to Thursday, and then open 24 hours on Friday and Saturday.
For generations, Oregon Diner has been serving all-day breakfast, affordable everyday entrée specials, and midnight coffee. Chef Spiro is always cooking up something fresh, and their bakery serves up homemade breads and pastries six days a week. Oregon Diner diner offers an extensive menu and full bar.
With new restaurants and brunch specials popping up all over the city, old time diners are starting to restrict hours and services. As you’re out there enjoying brunch, don’t forget to support your local diner.
302 W. Oregon Ave,
Philadelphia, PA 19148