In search of a great BYOB? Head north of Center City to Fairmount, where you’ll find several surefire bets for good eats and casual drinks nestled among the row homes of this residential neighborhood. Think of it as a brief escape from the city without actually leaving the city. - Chelsea Karnash
Moroccan corner spot Figs has something of a cult following going on, and once you set foot inside this cheerful orange eatery, you’ll see no problem in joining up. While brunch is the fave, lunch and dinner are also superb – order the baked brie in a clay pot (Lavender! Honey! Yum!) and prepare to moan in ecstasy during consumption. Pair that little clay pot with some vino, the homemade fig ice cream and a sidewalk seat drenched in sunshine, and you have the perfect dining scenario.
Tasty Thai food abounds at Trio, which is located inside an unassuming row home on Brown Street. First, tuck into the samosas and peanut sauce, then dive into an order of drunken noodles, pad thai or green curry. Stumped on what type of booze to bring? Check out the convenient “BYOB” tab on Trio’s website for suggestions.
Surprise: (Relative) Newcomer Isabel is owned by the same “trio” of friends that owns Trio. For a light meal, try the Isabel’s House salad with jicama and queso fresco and an order of the fresh guac. Hungrier peeps will love the Cochinita Pibil (a dish from the Yucatan that consists of pork shoulder rubbed with Anchiote paste, wrapped in banana leaf and slowly braised) or the chiles rellenos. Make sure to bring your own bottle of tequila to combine with their fresh margarita mix, and FYI, Isabel also serves an awesome brunch.
A BYOB Greek tavern? Apparently. But whatever the restaurant is, Zorba’s food is definitely one thing: delish! From the grilled octopus to a lemon artichoke-coated lamb shank, you won’t be disappointed – especially if you start off with hummus. If you’re lucky, you’ll snag a sidewalk seat in warm weather – ideal for a side dish of people watching.
While all of Sabrina’s three locations are beloved brunching options, the Callowhill Street outpost might just be the least trafficked. In this case, that’s a good thing, since all three have a “no reservations” policy and tend to be packed on weekends. Tote your champy or vodka and make sure to go hungry – portions are HUGE, and options like pumpkin pancakes stuffed with Nutter Butter cookie pieces and peanut butter chips are not the best bet for those on a diet.