Helm Rittenhouse

4.3
151 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
Helm Rittenhouse is the newest bar and restaurant from acclaimed chef-owners Kevin D’Egidio and Michael Griffiths. Surrounded by the bustling atmosphere of Center City, Helm Rittenhouse brings simplicity and sophistication to the area with locally sourced, hyper seasonal and vegetable focused plates for sharing. Upstairs overlooking Chestnut Street, guests are offered a variety of dining experiences in the second-floor space, including lounge space and a chef’s counter. The bar offers great cocktails, beer, and wine to accompany their continuously changing food menu.
What 151 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.3
service
4.1
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
79% of people would recommend it to a friend
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WB
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 1

In general I found the food amateurish. The Trout Cucumber appetizer was oily and just weird - the rest of the food was mediocre at best. I also feel, for the price point, the interior could be given a bit (a lot) more attention, bread should be free and the waitstaff (service was very good) could look a bit more professional. The loud music @ 6 on a Friday did not mask any of these issues nor increase the happy hour business - The restaurant was half empty when we left @ 7:45. As an added note, I worked in the restaurant business for 20 years so I can be forgiving but this just wasn't good.

C
Philadelphia
11 reviews
Dined on August 6, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 4

Apps were really good. Drinks and dinner were too smoky plus the 30 dollar strip was tiny and had a ton of gristle.

G
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Drinks were well made with pride.
The server was nice enough, and he recommended both the Steak and the Smoked fish.
Outback's sirloin was better quality than HELM's "NY strip".
And the smoked fish was okay but slightly a fishy smell- which should never happen with really fresh fish (I was told this by a friend who is a seasoned executive chef).

LS
Philadelphia
6 reviews
Dined on July 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

We loved this new restaurant. Food delicious and creative, and the ambiance -- informal, library-like atmosphere on the second floor -- was really relaxing. We took our adult children there for my birthday last week and it was the perfect choice.

AA
1 review
Dined on July 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Helm Rittenhouse!
What a fantastic experience! We visited on a Monday night. The staff paid attention to detail and accommodated our needs. The drinks were outstanding and the food--unique and prepared with care. The space was lovely, airy, clean, and lined with windows. This eating experience could not have gone any better. Please look for Helm Rittenhouse on the second floor. It is difficult to notice it from the street level. Helm is a gem. Please go try it soon!!

P
Philadelphia
12 reviews
Dined on July 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was the first time that we have eaten at Helm Rittenhouse and both the food and the service were amazing! We did not feel rushed and everything that came out of the kitchen was delicious. I highly recommend!

B
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Limited wine selection but food was excellent. The appetizers were amazing.

LL
Philadelphia
16 reviews
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 2

The service was embarrassing. It was as if we were annoying the waiter by being present. We waited almost 30 minutes to give our order, he never even told us about specials until we asked. Then we waited an awkward amount of time, having to wave him down to ask for dessert menus. Mind you, the place was barely full given it's a Friday in the summer. Not a great double date night for us ...

c
Philadelphia
11 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I like sharing small plates so this is perfect for that.

B
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

I would recommend it with a caveat - the wine list is very limited and for downtown Philly I would have expected more - the cocktails/ drinks they made looked exotic and different. The food was very good and different which was a welcome change of sorts. The service was very good. The ambiance is good given it is a second floor view of Chestnut Street in downtown Philly.

EE
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 21, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 1

Stuffed squid were recommended and not good. Wings from the bar had a nice flavor but not tender. Sunchoke was delicious!

OT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Wait staff was super knowledgeable, speedy, and attentive. Menu is extremely tasty and creative. Wine and drink choices were excellent. Save room for dessert. The ambience is very good but could stand some minor improvements. Would highly recommend.

OT
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We really liked helm rittenhouse. The main courses were outstanding. They were very accommodating of food allergies/preferences. Service was great. My only complaint was that the chairs were SO uncomfortable. Everyone at the table complained and it made the experience less enjoyable.

DH
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on June 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

The service, cocktails and food were outstanding. Inventive, fresh and interesting ingredients made for fun pairings. What the location lacks in ambiance it more than makes up for in the food and drink experience.

KW
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Everything was good but nothing was great. We got a lot of different things and I can't tell you anything stood out except maybe the rib appetizer, which was really good.

Not sure I'd go back for the price point.

f
Philadelphia
265 reviews
Dined on May 31, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

I want to like Helm Rittenhouse because I love the original and this one is walking distance from where I live, but I was underwhelmed for the second time. I don't love the room and miss the great creative daily specials on the chalkboard and byob style of Helm. The stuffed squid app and duck entrée were not inspiring, although the simple salad was vibrant and anything but ordinary and quite substantial. My fish was very good and loved the cocktail: My King. I won't rush back but I am rooting for the place!

RW
1 review
Dined on May 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Good food, quite restaurant (slow day), excellent service.

MM
Philadelphia
20 reviews
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent food and service! Our first time and will definitely be back for more.

J
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on May 20, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 2

Service was horrible. It took forever to get our drinks and the order was wrong. The waiter was very confused and we had to repeat our food order to get it right. I like the original Helm very much but would never go back to this location.

P
Philadelphia
19 reviews
Dined on May 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I believe this was my third visit. The food and service were just as excellent as the other two times. The Monday half-price bottle of wine deal was much appreciated. Gateau Basque dessert was great.

MB
Philadelphia
399 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Last weekend we dined elsewhere and remarked "it's no Helm." Consistently great meal with creative dishes. We enjoy both the Rittenhouse and original locations. Probably our most repeated restaurants.

H
Indiana
7 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The food at Helm Rittenhouse was very good, but fell short of excellent. My expectations were really high given it's listing in PhillyEater top 38 restaurants and a couple other lists I had seen. The apps and cocktails were very good, the Branzino was great, and the Gateau Basque dessert was fantastic. The pasta dish and the chicken dish were just ok. The service was very good, and the ambiance was good. I liked it, I just didn't quite think it lived up to the hype of some of the lists it is included in.

KP
Philadelphia
34 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 2

Food was good, very nice attention to the accompaniments...thoughtful counterpoint to the main ingredient of each dish. Wine selection far too limited for the variety of food. The interior of the restaurant is tired and a bit tatty.

RG
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on May 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service!! Would definitely recommend. Staff knowledgeable and provided good menu recommendations. Will be going back!

OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

We did not enjoy the flavor profiles. The service also underwhelming.

C
Philadelphia
6 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Service and food were outstanding! Will return

OT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on May 1, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 2

Food was outrageously salty and inedible.

OT
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

The small plates we started with were good, but all three of our entrees were a disappointment. The ravioli was SO salty you could barely eat it. The duck and lobster were tough. Overall we were disappointed compared to the good experience we had at their other restaurant

OT
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on April 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience

RA
Philadelphia
22 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 2

Not my style to write not so good reviews but feel compelled here. Read about Helm Rittenshouse in Philly Mag top 50 list and was excited to get a table for 6 on a Saturday Night. We arrived a little early and went to sit at bar. Entire bar area was empty except for dishes piled up, trash cans visible from any bar stool. Then we order a glass of wine and a cocktail. I ordered a martini on the rocks, dry.. was asked if I wanted dirty, said no and recieved a dirty martini up that was almost undrinkable for the olive juice. My wife ordered a glass of red wine which was served at what felt like the temperature of warm tea, as the bottle of wine sat behind bar far up on a shelf where warm air seems to reside.

Dinner began with our friends and I now knew to ask for each bottle of wine we ordered to be chilled for 5-10 minutes before being served to us to get it to a comfortable drinking temp. Server and bartender were nice enough. Apps were actually quite tasty and we shared and enjoyed. For mains we had Bronzino and Duck .. duck was ok, a bit rare.. Bronzino was too salty and not great. Deserts were fine and I do commend our server for comping one order of duck that one of our group basically didnt/couldnt eat.

So, moral of the story here is actual experience < expectations is a bad outcome for the restaurant. I hope they get it together a bit but our overall sense was they are on a downhill slide for some reason... given the raves i've heard about the original, thats just too bad.

OT
Philadelphia
11 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 1

The owners of Helm were apparently in a rush to open their Rittenhouse location. The space is anything but charming. The interior is run down and appears dirty as a result. This was confirmed by a trip after dinner to the rest room. The interior temperature was balmy as the staff couldn’t make a decision as to whether to keep the broken rotting windows open or crank the air conditioning. I couldn’t decide whether to wear my raincoat at dinner or not. And, all this to have a very average meal. There are so many fabulous options in the Rittenhouse neighborhood that we will not bother returning.

E
Philadelphia
8 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 1

Had dinner at the original Helm a number of years ago and it was wonderful. So I was looking forward to trying the second location near Rittenhouse Square. But what an enormous disappointment. First, after walking up some 20 steps to the second floor location, you walk into a dark and dingy room with Christmas lights surrounding the bar, aluminum foil covering the open vent pipes, and little more than that to make you feel comfortable. The piped-in music was loud and the acoustics are nonexistent. Square tables and hard chairs. No charm whatsoever. The menu is sparse. Bread costs an extra $3.00. Water is served at room temperature. The waiter’s descriptions of the less than decipherable items on the menu were perfunctory, to say the least. The food was better than the buildup would have led me to expect. My duck entree was quite good, as was the lobster. The branzino was bland. My wife’s lamb arrived cold, and even after it was sent back, it was still cold. Appetizers were passable, at best. No point in bothering with dessert. And the price point is truly excessive, given the mediocrity of the food and the entire experience. Clearly, the new Helm needs a serious and substantial makeover. Until that occurs, I can find dozens of far more welcoming and accomplished restaurants in this City to enjoy.

N
Philadelphia
31 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Limited but very interesting selections. Would recommend to a friend and certainly go again.

DA
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was excellent. Drinks were also delicious. Service was attentive and knowledgeable. Definitely going back.

OT
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

The food choices were limited but I believe this gives attention to the perfection of each selection. Each member at our table had something different and everyone was happy with the quality.We had Swiss in our party and Raclette cheese is a favorite. It was special to see this incorporated in the cauliflower appetizer. I had some difficulty hearing due to the acoustics of the room and my own mild deficit.

h
Philadelphia
25 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 5ambience 4

Two couples dining and in conversation, having fun; excellent food and service, in fact our 4th time there.

But all that got canceled out by a guy with no smile telling us he needed the table in 15 minutes. We would have stayed and had more than a few more drinks.

Too many other great restaurants in Philly!!!

ND
Philadelphia
8 reviews
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The food was delicious. A bit too roasted, grilled, or toasted than I'd like, but very delicious. Portions are on the smaller side, but it was OK as they encourage sharing. The noise level was very high though and it was tough to have a conversation.

P
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on April 1, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 4

Disappointed. Service was inattentive. Meat was overcooked and sauce devoid of flavor. I love the other Helms

KC
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We really enjoyed our dinner at Helm Rittenhouse. The service was fantastic - the waitress was very knowledgeable about the menu and explained some of the more creative ingredient pairings to us well. The cocktails were also fun and unique. Our appetizers were great! We got the brussel sprouts with cheddar and smoked goat, and the cauliflower dip. The pasta dish that we tried - the gnudi - was alright; it was harder to differentiate each of the different flavors included. The flank steak topped with beets was already great and refreshing, but we found the torte to be a little bit strange in its inclusion of saffron in the topping. I'd definitely recommend Helm Rittenhouse as a spot to try, but it probably doesn't top the list of my absolute Rittenhouse area favorites.

LB
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on March 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service and food was EXCELLENT at Helm Rittenhouse. The appetizers utilized fresh seasonal ingredients and new ways. I would recommend splitting a few plates to share.
I got the flank steak braciole for my entree which used hazelnut ricotta, topped with pickled red beets! Different and delicious!
I will be looking forward to going back!

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