The 10 Best Restaurants In Philadelphia’s Chinatown

Lauren Gruber

Chinatown is a neighborhood that sits right on Center City’s Market Street border, to the east of City Hall. Many of these restaurants offer authentic cuisine and recipes handed down that are centuries old. The Culture Trip has compiled a list of the top Philadelphia Chinatown restaurants with the best delicacies and traditional pan-Asian cuisines.

1. Banana Leaf: Malaysian Cuisine

Restaurant, Malaysian, Indian, Asian

If you’re looking to try flavors that are comforting but still indulgent, Banana Leaf serves quality Malaysian food with incredible sauces and noodles. However, the restaurant also features Thai, Chinese and Japanese cuisine such as sushi. Popular entrees include the Thai basil noodles and the hookien char mee. Located in the heart of Chinatown, the modern atmosphere is good for groups and families. A must-try is their pisang goreng, a fried banana with house made vanilla ice cream for a delectable dessert.

2. Penang

Restaurant, Malaysian

Penang Restaurant, North 10th Street
©Dan Reed/Flickr
The popular Chinatown restaurant, Penang, offers Malaysian food with a flair for comforting simplicity. The sleek, modern environment and dim lighting adds sophistication for a casual, but seemingly refined evening. Standouts here include the mango chicken and the Indian pancake with a smooth and mild curry sauce. You’ll also find the right amount of spice in traditional Malaysian dishes like nasi lemak, chow keoh tow, roti chanai and the beef rendang.

3. New Harmony Vegetarian Restaurant

Restaurant, Vegetarian, Asian, Chinese

New Harmony Vegetarian Restaurant, Philadelphia
©Jessica Rossi/Flickr
New Harmony offers up vegetarian and vegan entrees. On Sundays they host an all-you-can-eat buffet from 5:30pm-8pm that is perfect for sampling different kinds of foods. Some highlights on the menu include the Phoenix chicken and the wonton soup. A huge menu of many options and great service (don’t forget the amazing dessert) is sure to please even meat eaters who eat here frequently as well. Plus, this place is kosher!

4. Dim Sum Garden

Dim Sum Garden

Dim Sum Garden is perfect for everyone, families, groups and individuals. Loyal customers have been supporting the business for years thanks to its fresh, quality ingredients and large portions of Shanghai style dim sum. Their different varieties of dumplings are the highlights, particularly the pork and shanghai dumplings. Sides of the pan fried beef potato cakes and are also frequent favorites, but there are also plates of classic Chinese dishes.
Address & phone number: 1020 Race St Philadelphia, PA 19107 215-873-0258

A ramen bowl with traditional made noodles and hard boiled egg at Terakawa Ramen.©tsubasuke5/Flickr

5. Terakawa Ramen

Terakawa Ramen

Terakawa Ramen features authentic ramen with traditional handmade noodles with a broth recipe that originates from the Kumamoto region of Japan, and is simmered for a period of two days. Popular ramen bowls include their signature ramen and the spicy tan tan ramen, and also try the takoyaki or mountain-potato encrusted octopus. It’s a great stop for Sunday brunch.
Address & phone number: 204 N 9th St Philadelphia, PA 19107 267-687-1355

A house favorite, the noodle drawn soup bowl is a cheap, but quality-made meal.©karmacamilleeon/Flickr

6. Nan Zhou Hand Drawn Noodle House

Restaurant, Chinese, Asian, Soup

Nan Zhou Hand Drawn Noodle House, Philadelphia
©Kent Wang/Flickr
Nan Zhou boasts some of the best Chinese comfort food in Chinatown. Named after the cultural significance of Nan Zhou pulled noodles, their bowls of ramen and lo mein are authentic highlights of the menu. They also have high quality meat dishes like the spicy pig ears. However, patrons should try the soup bowls with crystal clear broth that is densely fragrant with radish and red chili oil. They also have amazing peanut and pork soy sauces.

7. Rangoon Burmese Restaurant

Restaurant, Asian, Vegetarian

Rangoon has offered traditional Burmese cuisine for over two decades. Offering soups, seafoods and noodles of different traditional varieties. Noodle dishes are a highlight and are featured with peanuts, vinaigrette or curry, and tamarind sauces that make for a unique flavor. Favorites include the tea leaf salad and house-made thousand layer bread with curry. The neighborhood gem offers an extensive list of meats as well.

8. Nine Ting

Bar, Restaurant, Korean, Asian

Nine Ting, Philadelphia
©Scott Sherrill-Mix/Flickr
The Korean BBQ spot was voted one of Philadelphia Magazine’s 2015 best restaurants, and this BYOB features a sophisticated atmosphere with seafood and meat options with hot pots and yakiniku. Here you can opt for both the Korean BBQ and hot pot option as well, or just get the BBQ meal or hot pot that allows patrons to order all they can eat. They also have a DIY sauce bar that features many tasty options.

Spice C

At Spice C, you’ll get large portions and delicious hand drawn noodle dishes and shaved noodle soups. Sporting pickles on each table you can add to your soup, Spice C offers quality ingredients with unlimited pickled mustard greens for free, along with twenty other toppings to choose from. With your choice of clear broth or szechuan broth with your noodle choice, they also have an extensive list of stir fry noodle and rice dishes and a variety of healthy Chinese herbs to add.
Address & phone number: 131 N 10th St Philadelphia, PA 19107 215-923-2222

9. E Mei

Restaurant, Chinese, Asian

An inconspicuous looking restaurant with a laid back vibe, E Mei is perfect family-oriented restaurant for authentic Szechuan Chinese cuisine. Everything is served in family style portions, try the dumplings with hot chili aioli or chonquin chicken. If you spend over $24 here on a dish, it’ll be because it can serve three to four people, so it’s well worth the cost. The flavoring is on point, with items like the shrimp lightly breaded and covered in chili and flavorful herbs.

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