Enjoy an Elegant and Affordable Lunch at This Beautiful Restaurant in the Hyatt at the Bellevue
Philly residents and visitors alike can enjoy an elegant and affordable lunch at this beautiful hotel restaurant. Located in the Hyatt at The Bellevue, XIX offers both amazing views and exceptional food.
XIX Restaurant in the Hyatt at The Bellevue – also known as “Nineteen” – may offer the best lunch deal in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for both residents and visitors alike. Part of what makes XIX’s “Café Lunch Special” so amazing is that very few people seem to know about it. For $20 a person, diners can enjoy a delicious three-course meal in the restaurant’s elegant, nineteenth-floor dining room. XIX’s Broad Street location, right in the heart of Center City and near many theaters and cultural attractions, makes it an extremely convenient location for tourists in need of a quiet, calm respite.
Upon entering the Hyatt at The Bellevue, take the elevators in the front lobby up to the nineteenth floor. XIX awaits down a short corridor. The restaurant’s elegant dining room features a high, domed ceiling with beautiful, classic architectural accents. A friend, whom I joined there for lunch recently, described the atmosphere like “dining inside a giant Fabergé Egg.” Some tables offer wonderful sweeping views of the Philadelphia skyline, but you may wish to call to reserve one of those. The rest of the tables are arranged circular-style, with a small buffet station in the center. The mood is sedate and elegant, inviting to couples, larger groups, and individual diners as well.
The lunch menu does offer a la carte options, but the main attraction is the $20 Cafe Lunch Special. Diners choose one of five entree options which typically include a pasta, a panini, a flatbread pizza, a steak, and the fish of the day. Unlimited soda or house-made ice tea is included with the meal as well. After ordering your entree, you are invited to indulge in the salad, cheese and meat side of the buffet, which offers a daily changing assortment of delightful dishes. On the day of our visit, the salad offerings included Caesar Salad, a tomato and corn salad, French-style potato salad on watercress, sauteed mushrooms on arugula, and napa cabbage with cold udon noodles. Three types of meat were offered, including thin-sliced prosciutto and porchetta. A soft, hard, and blue cheese were on the buffet as well, all of which went wonderfully with the fresh, crusty rolls brought to the table. You could easily make an entire meal out of this salad buffet alone.
Entrees followed, fresh from the XIX kitchen. I ordered the steak, which came with cheesy grits and tender grilled asparagus. The steak was perfectly cooked to my medium rare request, with a wonderful salt-and-pepper crust. It was one of the best steaks I have enjoyed in a Philadelphia restaurant in recent memory. My friend had the pizza, which that day was prepared Asian-style and featured duck breast and napa cabbage in a sweet, hoisin sauce. The presentation was definitely more flatbread than traditional pizza, but it had excellent flavor. The hoisin sauce was extremely well-balanced, not too sweet, and the toppings were just the right amount to keep the flatbread crisp and light.
You must attempt to save some room for dessert, which is again offered buffet-style, in small bites so you can sample many different tastes. On this visit, dessert offerings included fresh seasonal berries with whipped cream, citrus madeleines, mini-Key Lime tarts, walnut-cheesecake bites, Champagne mousse, cream puffs, cupcakes and several jars of fresh-baked cookies. Everything I tasted was delicious, although I was already so full I could not sample everything.
Service throughout our meal was pleasant and attentive. For only $20 per person, plus tax and tip, XIX truly offers one of the best lunch deals to be found in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. While I could not indulge in such a luxurious lunch every day, it makes for an excellent occasional treat. I would certainly recommend the Cafe Lunch at XIX to any visitor to the city looking for a unique Philadelphia dining experience.