o f P H I L A D E L P H I A
Marra's, in the heart of South Philadelphia (supposedly the oldest surviving restaurant here), has thin-crust pizzas; classic escarole soup; big, inexpensive carafes of chianti; old black-and-white photos in the window; and, coincidentally, my heart. To me, there's nothing better than scoring a tall-backed, red vinyl-cushioned wooden booth in the first (and best) of the three dining rooms. There's something revelatory about Marra's simple garden salads, with their oil-cured olives, and about their pizza, which is best served plain, just homemade sauce and cheese. I've never been let down by a meal here, and I've had pretty much everything on the menu. Okay, maybe the conch salad wasn't that good. By the way: Wait for a downstairs booth. It's worth it.