Blue Bell Inn

4.6
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2209 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Contemporary American
The redesigned rustic-meets-modern ambiance compliments the Contemporary American menu which features premium cuts of meat, ocean-fresh seafood and signature raw bar. Seasonal outdoor dining on the flagstone patio is available upon request.
In 2013, Blue Bell Inn underwent extensive renovations for over a year. Various historical aspects were enhanced through thoughtful restoration and new materials such as solid white oak and porcelain tile floors were introduced to create a stunning architectural mélange spanning three centuries.
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Private Dining

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What 2209 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
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CM
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Very enjoyable experience!

HP
Philadelphia
16 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Had a wonderful brunch!

RB
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Entrees were amazing! Our waitress was very good.

G
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent food. Outstanding service!

LW
Philadelphia
8 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always a great standby local restaurant with good food, service and atmosphere

SC
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Blue Bell Inn offers excellent food across the New American spectrum, though I wouldn't necessarily call it "gourmet." My wife and I started off with a crab cocktail appetizer, followed by lobster roll and branzino for mains. Generally, I'm not a fan of skin-on fish, but, in this case, the skin was crispy and it worked. For dessert, we had a slice of red velvet cheesecake with a scoop of maple ice cream.

My main complaint, if I have one-- as the meal, frankly, was fantastic-- was simply value. The above dishes, plus one cocktail and a coffee, was roughly $150 (including tax.) I found that a bit steep for what we actually got. That being said, I'd certainly return.

JS
Philadelphia
30 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We really enjoyed our meals of braised short rib and filet mignon. My oysters on the half shell were great and the shrimp in my husband's shrimp cocktail were jumbo sized and delicious!

J
Philadelphia
25 reviews
Dined on February 19, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Service was slow - believe short staffed and very busy. Overall everything was okay.

R
Philadelphia
22 reviews
Dined on February 18, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience5

I have dined there several times. The food is always very good, if pricey. Last night I had the oysters on the half shell as an entree, which were excellent followed by seared tuna over black rice with Bok Choy and an orange sesame glaze. The entree was also very good and I would order it again.

M
Philadelphia
26 reviews
Dined on February 18, 2020
Overall1food1service5ambience5

I am celiac and they poisoned me. Ended up in the hospital. Next time ask for the chef because they do not educated their waitstaff

OT
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Valentines brunch

PF
Philadelphia
20 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall3food2service3ambience3

I showed up for my reservation and the restaurant reported to you that I didn’t. The idiot seating guests is the reason this happened. It was as if the reception area was pure chaos because of his lack of ability to seat guests.

S
Philadelphia
10 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall4food3service4ambience4

Overall good night. Seated right away, area we sat was nice and not to loud. Food was good with only criticism being 3 of the four meals were either over or under done. Still tasted good.

N
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Only one issue, we felt a little rushed to order and our main course food came much sooner than expected for a fine restaurant.

OT
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

God company good food; a little cold and drafty near the door; somewhat pricey, but very good

OT
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Great food and great experience. Really enjoyed the level of service! Will be back for sure!

OT
Philadelphia
9 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall1food1service2ambience2

Valentine’s Day
Been to BBI several times over the past 3-4 years.
Worst experience I’ve had, will not be back.
Very surprised by the subpar crowd on such a big day.
It was not busy, yet service was slow, food was so-so.
Waited about 30 minutes for a drink, about an hour for a bowl of soup to come out.
Man course was underwhelming, my dish was light on both size and substance.
Very very disappointing from a place that was once one of our favorite spots.
Too much good competition to give it another shot.

c
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were pleasantly surprised with the Blue Bell Inn. We had a great Valentine's dinner. The food was good as was the service. The ambience was nice and we were not rushed at all. Always thought it was a special occasion place but we will return for dinner or happy hour.

GG
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We requested a quiet spot and were given a table in a small dining room that was perfect for conversation.

UM
Philadelphia
45 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

The Blue Bell Inn has been and continues to be a venerable, first class restaurant. My wife’s fried oysters are, in her words, the most perfectly fried oysters she has ever had. Her steak was perfectly prepared as was my braised ribs. This is restaurant where you just can’t go wrong no matter what you order. The service was helpful, pleasant and competent. Well done!

i
Philadelphia
10 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall3food3service5ambience3

We are frequent patrons of the Blue Bell Inn, attending for special occasions, but were sorely disappointed on our last visit. We were celebrating an important medical milestone for one of our party of five, but found a lot lacking in the dishes served. Both of my in-laws ordered duck confit but duck, it seems, was an after-thought of an ingredient in the dish. Both expressed disappointment, comparing the dish unfavorably to that served elsewhere. Meanwhile, my daughter and I shared a pork chop and shared the same opinion — terribly overseasoned, too much salt. My wife and I, who were treating, felt the experience was not worth the price paid. Did the chef have an off-night?

OT
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Food and service excellent but Saturday night crowd was loud.

JM
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall4food3service4ambience3

Had a enjoyable time there.
Waitress was very nice. App's and drinks were amazing! The area that I was disappointed in was with the main course. 2 out of 4 of the meals were stunning (seafood risotto and the flank steak) but the 2 others were mediocre poor. The short ribs were good- but slightly on the dry side and the Ahi tuna was asked to be cooked medium rare and it was medium well and dry and lacked flavor.
It was disappointing since this is the first time I have had the opportunity to dine here (and my meal was the worst) and had heard great things from friends who go monthly. It was also for my birthday so the fact that my meal was the worst just a downer on the night.
I will still give it a try again in the future. I am hoping that this was just a rare occasion/oversight on the food.

OT
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience3

The ambiance is great and interior decor interesting and well done - feels like someplace else. The noise level is higher but it is also a bar so understandable.
Food is fresh and tasty. Nice blend of menu selections and options, although but too pricy.

CF
Philadelphia
10 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Have been here several times and the food and atmosphere doesn’t disappoint. I had the branzino. It is consistently delicious. Switched out potatoes for cauliflower mash and it was to die for! Everything was excellent.

EE
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall3food5service2ambience1

The noise was so loud we could hardly converse & we were in a smaller room upstairs. Good was amazing but every time the waitstaff passed behind my husband’s chair, they bumped his shoulders. They seemed rushed & didn’t seem to notice or care

DH
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our server was excellent. Food was prepared perfectly. Dinner was a home run

LA
Philadelphia
35 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall4food3service5ambience5

My filet dinner was very good. However, my husband had branzino that he said was not very good. Also, I am not sure if the desserts are made on premises, but they were not good at all. The apple dessert was served burnt and had a very bad taste. Also there was a chocolate cake with peanut butter mousse that wasn't fresh.

I really like Blue Bell in and usually have a great meal. Just sharing these comments hoping this might help better serve future customers. Thanks for your time.

KB
Philadelphia
31 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always an excellent experience. Staff is always friendly and food is always delicious. They have a large menu with something for everyone.

T
Salt Lake City
20 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2020
Overall4food3service4ambience5

The food was mediocre. The special - seared mahi-mahi - was fully cooked to the point that it lost all it's flavor. The waitress couldn't even remember the full description of the specials... Do not recommend.

LM
Philadelphia
8 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Birthday dinner

OT
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience4

The food was delicious, although our soup was tepid. My glass of wine came when I was two thirds of the way through my entree. Every course was excellent, however, which transcends the few criticisms that I have.

BA
Philadelphia
20 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall4food3service4ambience3

Food was good. Drinks great. Live music is too loud and distracting.

RT
Philadelphia
38 reviews
Dined on January 24, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

For those of you who are old enough to remember the Old Blue Bell Inn......

I grew up in Northeastern PA and our family would take trips to Philadelphia for family events, Phillies games at Connie Mack Stadium and sightseeing. We would always stop at the Blue Bell Inn for dinner on the ride home. My memories from the late 60's and early 70's was an Inn that catered to 80-90 year old clientele. With large steaks and an older service staff.

A transformation has appeared. Appearance is great, rooms are more open and brighter. Bar area is really nice. Only thing missing are the "big" steaks!

M
Philadelphia
55 reviews
Dined on January 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful meal!! 👍👍

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B
Philadelphia
83 reviews
Dined on January 22, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Four of us arrived for an early midweek dinner were surprised to see a full parking lot and a line for valet parking. Waz-up we thought? Inside the place was buzzing with what looked like a full house. Yet, when we approached the hostess station we were warmly greeted and promptly lead past a spacious, busy bar space, to one of several dining areas in a rather small, pleasantly decorated, dining room. Nicole soon arrived to greet us, provide water and menus, and take our beverage orders. Throughout our visit she was exceedingly pleasant and helpful. That she didn't check in with us as often as we might have expected likely was because the dining room was full with no empty tables and she appeared to be the only server. She apparently was also responsible for busing her tables because it took some time before dishes were removed. The Caesar salads, mushroom toast, and fresh oysters appetizers were all superb. The calamari we requested for the table was as good as any of us could remember eating anywhere. The coating perfectly adhered to the tender yet firm meat with flavor that had just a kick of spice to make it interesting. The racks of lamb and strip steak entrees were prepared medium rare as requested and both were tender and scrumptious. One of us ordered the grouper special that was simply prepared with a bit of bok choy and a hint of soy that was found to "delicious." The sides with our entrees were the usual with fresh ingredients that were well prepared. Yes, we each had desserts and they were excellent though the coffee creme brulee just wasn't our cup of tea. This is a rather upscale establishment approaching fine dining, not withstanding some of the patrons picnic attire, so the prices seem commensurate with the quality of the food and service.

TT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on January 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was delicious. Service was very good. Waitress very nice. A very enjoyable evening.

NF
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on January 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We sat in the bar in the corner. It was not noisy in the corner. Food and service were great. One of my favorite places.

OT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Food was outstanding and the atmosphere was great. Old building that was very charming. Enjoyed a great date night with my wife.

r
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Raw seafood offerings are excellent. The reason for 4 star ratings is that the cooked items were salty, however, this was the first time that happened; been to BB Inn 4 other times. The server appeared very rushed but was nice. It was noisier than usual.

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