Chef Justin Petruce has been living in Philadelphia for the past 10 years, but his first restaurant gig was down in North Carolina making pizza. While he first got into the service industry just for the sake of a job, over time, he fell in love with the energy and camaraderie of it. Today, Petruce serves as Culinary Director for Marquis & Co., a family of restaurants that comprises Bar Bombon, Charlie was a sinner and HipCityVeg. He dishes on where to get the best yogurt panna cotta and where we goes for the most “handsome” pizza in Philly.
Best late night meal?
Ken’s Seafood (1004 Race St.). It’s open until around 4 a.m. and their food is best eaten after a long day, so you order way too much. I love the Chinese Broccoli in XO sauce.
Best meal under $10?
Hip City Veg (127 S. 18th St.). The black bean dressing in the Udon Noodle Salad is amazing and I didn’t even come up with it!
Best hidden foodie gem?
Little Fish (746 S. 6th St.). It’s kind of hidden, but definitely a classic. The menu changes so often, but you really can’t go wrong with anything.
Best place to dine alone?
Bar Bombón (133 S. 18th St.). The bar here is really inviting and the new menu is full of great snacks. Try the Maitake mushroom huarache.
Place you always take or recommend for out-of-towners?
Reading Terminal Market (51 N. 12th St.). There’s nothing like walking through the terminal and watching all the tourists do duck spins, so that’s where I bring my friends who are visiting.
Go-to date spot, hands down.
Friday, Saturday, Sunday (261 S. 21st St.). It’s hard to get a night out without my son. But if we get that opportunity this place is phenomenal. Try the cocktails and yogurt panna cotta.
Best place to catch up with friends?
Pub and Kitchen (1946 Lombard St.) because it’s loud and Eli’s food is always on point.
Most Instagrammable restaurant?
Pizzeria Beddia (115 E. Girard Ave.). The pizzas are almost as handsome as Joe, the owner, and the food is pretty good too. Any of the four pizzas are a good choice.