Over the course of the spring and summer, University City has seen a surge of new restaurants, along with several closures. Here is the latest on dining options for Penn students and the West Philadelphia community.
New restaurants in University City
Raising Cane’s opened its first Philadelphia location in University City in May to long lines of chicken lovers. The restaurant, located at 3925 Walnut St., is the first of 14 new locations that will be opening in Pennsylvania.
Surreal Creamery opened at the beginning of July and serves ice cream specialties in Mason jars and bubble tea combinations. The University City location is the first in Philadelphia and is located at 3818 Chestnut St.
At the end of March, sustainable food chain DIG opened its second Philadelphia location in University City. The chain focuses on serving a locally sourced menu of bowls, salads, and other sides. DIG is located at 140 S. 36th St.
Mexican fast-casual restaurant El Taco also opened its second Philadelphia location in March. El Taco, which was founded by Penn graduates, serves tacos, quesadillas, burrito bowls, and other Mexican-inspired dishes. It is located at 3716 Spruce St.
In February, popular University City restaurant Pod reopened as KPod following a two-year COVID-19 pandemic-induced closure. KPod serves traditional South Korean food alongside fusion dishes that highlight Korean and American flavors, and is located at 3636 Sansom St.
In January, beloved bar and restaurant City Tap reopened, also following a two-year pandemic closure. Located at 3925 Walnut St., City Tap serves New American food and features a large beer and cocktail menu.
Closed restaurants in University City
Last month, University City staple Distrito announced its indefinite closure for the rest of the summer. The restaurant cited the lack of demand during the summer as a reason for closure. As of mid-August, Distrito still has no reopening date. The restaurant was open for 14 years.
Family-owned Korean restaurant Koreana closed its doors in April. The restaurant’s lease expired in December 2021 and was not renewed because the restaurant’s block was purchased by real estate developers. The owners are currently looking for a new location.
Philadelphia doughnut chain Beiler’s Donuts closed its University City location on July 23. Located inside Chestnut Hall Apartments, Beiler’s had been open for over five years.