The menu at Knight's Bistro is decidedly unselfish—its large plates of Italian food encourage the sharing of covetous bites. Diners break off pieces from large specialty pizzas decorated in eggplant cutlets or pass the bruschetta and one of four stuffed shells brimming with ricotta cheese to their neighbor. Plates overflow with pastas dressed in one of eight sauces sopped up by housemade rolls.
Families pass these bites back and forth beneath golden cone-shaped lamps that hang above the restaurant's diner-style booths. The staff permits diners to bring their own libations from home, an easier way to facilitate social dining than forcing people to drink from an eight-pronged crazy straw. Weekly dinner specials also play into the convivial theme: Tuesday nights feature classic clambakes with crab legs, lobster claws, and other seafood, whereas Mondays consolidate a large pizza and four soft drinks under a single price.
It would be too simple to describe Indiya as an Indian restaurant. After all, India is a vast nation with large metropolitan areas, small towns, and everything in between, encompassing hundreds of local cuisines. In this spirit, Chef Vipul Bhasin draws inspiration from India's 28 culinary regions to create a diverse menu celebrating the country's full spectrum of flavors. On any given day, he fires up the tandoori oven to grill tangy chicken kebabs, bake garlic naan bread, and char-grill jumbo shrimps. Away from the clay oven, Chef Bhasin crafts curries and vegetarian specialties such as Paneer Makhani: homemade cheese cubes simmered in a tomato-honey sauce.
With outposts in Moorestown, Voorhees, and Collingswood, Akira is one of New Jersey's go-to spots for sushi, noodles, and grilled hibachi meals. Chefs behind the sushi bar expertly assemble rice, fresh fish, and vegetables into maki rolls and hand rolls, while their counterparts behind the hibachi grill put on a performance for diners by searing meats and seafood. The hibachi side of the restaurant gets lively with conversation and jumping flames, making it a festive venue for group dinners and pyromancer parties.
Tall stalks of bamboo flank Woksabi’s front doors, welcoming patrons into a modern space with exposed brick, dark wood, and accent lights that radiate hues of marigold and cobalt blue. Sleek tables support sizzling parades of lobster, filet mignon, shrimp, salmon, and veggies, kissed by the flames of a hibachi grill or drizzled in teriyaki sauce. In addition to searing hibachi dinners and piling plates with noodle favorites such as spicy pad thai, chefs impress diners seated at the sushi bar by slicing and wrapping fresh ingredients into rolls that range from the common california roll to the Perfect Match, a sweet and salty creation named in reference to Captain and Tennille.
Beef, jumbo wings, chicken fingers, jalapeño poppers, french fries, onion rings, mozzarella sticks, marinara sauce, honey mustard, and melted cheese. Those are some of the items available on The Whiskey Barrel's menu, and somehow, they all fit on the Mother of All Barrels sandwich. The 12-inch behemoth anchors a menu full of similarly hearty, borderline ridiculous sandwiches, burgers, entrees, and jumbo-sized wings that come in a variety of sauces, from whiskey BBQ to garlic-teriyaki and hot & honey.
The food provides fuel for late nights at the pub, which, like the drive-thru window outside every grandma's kitchen, stays open until 2 a.m. six times a week—including for live music performances every Saturday. Beer specials accompany all Flyers hockey games, and happy-hour deals Monday–Friday help nerves unwind after another long, hard day of resisting the urge to burn the dictionary.
Though his dishes once occupied the white-linen tablecloths of Philadelphia’s finest restaurants, Chef Gerald Dougherty now prefers making napkins messy with his signature recipes of rich, meaty barbecue fare. The former head chef of L'Aigla D'Or and Founders at the Bellevue, Chef Gerald currently oversees the pit at Little Louie's BBQ, a casual eatery he opened to satisfy his hankering for down-home grub. Not one to color within the lines, he draws on barbecue styles from across the country—think North Carolina, Kansas City, and Memphis—and smokes his meats over cherrywood, applewood, and hickory chips.
Little Louie’s dining room betrays the same down-home inspirations as its menu. Rustic lumber lines the countertops, and light fixtures reminiscent of branches illuminate the expansive space. If they can peel their eyes away from the beef brisket and pulled pork on their plates, guests will notice Butch Cassidy and Lone Ranger posters hanging from the walls, classic Western movies playing on the 70-inch flat-screen television, and outlaws discreetly taking down Wanted signs that bear their uncanny resemblances.