Countless fiber-optic cables comprise a titanic custom chandelier in Vango Lounge & Sky Bar’s main dining room, casting a glow over tufted-velvet walls and plates of Japanese continental cuisine. During a typical meal, yellowtail and grilled vegetables may top small plates of crostini, and wasabi mashed potatoes sidle up to larger entrees such as braised-beef short ribs in sweet teriyaki sauce. As chefs compose eel and avocado rolls or slice delicate pieces of salmon sushi, bartenders mix specialty cocktails, such as the Sundance with Absolut Raspberri and Godiva white-chocolate liqueur. Luxe decorations—including wall nooks that display sleek bottles of vodka and a wall that holds 200 inlaid fresh roses every night—dapple the 8,000-square-foot lounge. Upstairs on the roof deck, revelers can admire the surrounding skyline from a seat at the bar, boogie on the dance floor to nightly DJs, or secretly read comic books under the covers of king-size lounge beds.
The meat-and-seafood-centric dinner menu's combines local ingredients with fresh seasonal selections. Start with a seafood tasting appetizer ($24), which offers up sauces and condiments for a marine menagerie of oysters, clams, blue prawns, scallops, crab claw, and mussel salad for the landlocked sailor or supping siren. Entrees feature elegantly updated classics such as Pennsylvania rabbit bolognese with tagliatelle pasta, pancetta, and pecorino Romano ($24), or Black Angus beef tenderloin that's blissfully bathed in red wine beef sauce ($25). Finish with a whimsical sweet treat such as the lemon olive oil cake with honey marscapone cream and blackberry lime sorbet ($9). Pull up an upholstered chair beneath the pearl-bedecked chandelier and sip on a selection from the extensive wine and cocktail list while drinking in sweeping city views.
Fez Moroccan Restaurant should almost ask to see passports at the door. Bolts of crimson and green fabric embellished with golden patterns adorn the walls. Seated atop cushioned stools, diners surround the room's low-slung circular tables as Moroccan music echoes throughout the space and Friday and Saturday evenings herald the arrival of belly dancers. Collectively, these unmistakable accents of Moroccan culture help create an ambiance that Gayot described as, "a setting out of Arabian nights." As evidenced by the swirling aromas of saffron, honey and almonds, and harissa-cumin sauces, the chefs are equally committed to the task of capturing the essence of Morocco. In addition to the selection of kabobs and tagines, the Zagat-rated menu features a variety of vegetarian as well as meat-laden couscous dishes. The savory smells mingle with the slightly sweet smoke of the fruit-flavored shisha smoldering in the hookahs , which earned Fez Moroccan Restaurant a spot on CBS Philly's list of the Top Hookah Bars In Philadelphia.
Escort your appetite into Mad River's cheerful, casual confines and sample some hugely portioned eats off of the enticing board of fare. Tasty meal preludes include Angus beef sliders ($8), flash-fried calamari ($7), and barbecue-chicken quesadillas ($7). Full plates can come topped with an assortment of crisp salads, sandwiches, burgers, and pasta nests, all of which pair impeccably with views of flat-screen TVs and competitive chewing. If your appetite tends more toward the alcoholic, set your tongue goggles loose on Mad River's bounty of brews on tap and encased in handy glass cylinders. Trivia takes place on Tuesday nights and tests the limits of amateur quiz masters and time-traveling Renaissance scholars alike.
The pan-Asian hot spot boasts a miscellany of delectable delights served up family-style within its blue velvet-accented confines. Treat taste buds to a circular meal from Swanky Bubbles’s sushi menu by giving in to the sweet temptation roll, which bats its sushi lashes at your hunger with a medley of lightly torched tuna, asparagus, avocado, and spicy sauces ($12). Palates can search for higher meaning with the enlightenment roll, capable of eliminating an appetite's earthly desires with crabstick, verdant veggies, ginger, and wasabi cream ($9). The swanky sampler fetes choice enthusiasts with an array of sushi selections, including spicy tekka, california, and hamachi rolls that tear down oppressive suburban fences to share neighborly vibes with salmon, striped bass, and tuna sashimi ($28). Staunch believers in the power of flames can dig into the fully cooked dinner menu, packed with classic fare such as tangy pad thai ($16) and the flavorful, miso-glazed Chilean sea bass ($26). Sail to Polynesia with the fiji ribs ($14), or dock at the herbivore islands with the mushroom ravioli ($15).
Scenically besieged by water on three sides, Cavanaugh's River Deck culls meals from land and sea to serve in picturesque surroundings. The maritime menu is known for its famous crab dip ($10.99), which emcees mealtimes with a piping mix of seasonings, cream cheese, and crab alongside sidekicks of grilled pita. Customers hold lunch in the palm of their hands with Cavanaugh's spread of sandwiches, such as the seasoned lobster roll ($14.99) and ciabatta-encased panko-crusted chicken ($10.99). The prime rib and crab leg surf 'n' turf ($19.99, served Sunday–Tuesday only) satisfies cravings for both meaty fare as well as rhyming, unlike a dough trough.