Center City Restaurant Week

January 20, 2012 6:09:06 AM PST
If you've been waiting to try some of Center City's best restaurants, but worried they might be too pricey, this is your chance.

Starting Sunday and running through February 3, 2012 (except for Saturday night, January 28, 2012), it's time for the annual Center City Restaurant Week. More than 100 restaurants, including Davio's Northern Italian Steakhouse, are taking part.

Michelle Shannon of the Center City District explains, "You can go into any of our participating restaurants and you can get a minimum three-course lunch for $20 or a minimum three-course dinner for $35, not including tax, gratuity and alcohol. It's a great, great, deal."

Davio's is offering a choice of four appetizers and four entrees each week. Executive Chef David Boyle invited us into the kitchen as he prepared two of them: sauteed sea scallops over crispy mushrooms and a parsnip puree along with braised short ribs over a crispy polenta cake.

Ordinarily, a dinner like that -- along with an appetizer and a selection from the scrumptious dessert tray -- would cost more than $50. But the restaurateurs say offering a discount pays off.

Boyle explains, "We discount our menu drastically for Restaurant Week. We've been doing this since it started. We love it. It packs the doors and you don't make as much money on each dish, but you make it up in volume. And hopefully, repeat customers come back."

Restaurants book up quickly during Restaurant Week, so reservations are strongly suggested. To see a list of participating restaurants and to click through to view their menu selections, click here.