Sampan - Philadelphia

4.7
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3918 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Asian
Sampan, an intimate new restaurant located in Center City, Philadelphia, serves a fun menu of modern Asian small plates, ideal for mixing, matching and sharing. The comfortable, inviting setting offers guests an intimate, up-close-and-personal experience with Chef Michael Schulson and the acclaimed cuisine that has made him one of the country’s most sought-after chefs.

Designed by Philadelphia’s Sparks Design and Urban Space Development, Sampan offers seating for up to 120 guests in a warm, comfortable setting. The restaurant features reclaimed timber, distressed metals and a rustic, natural aesthetic anchored by a custom-crafted, color washed painting that illuminates the room and lends a soft, glowing ambiance to the cozy space.
What 3918 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
91% of people would recommend it to a friend
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CT
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Chefs tasting menu is definitely worth it. Great experience.

MS
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Sampan was recommended by a friend and it did not disappoint. Everything we had was top notch - we especially liked the General Tso Soup Dumpling, Pork Bao Bun, Korean BBQ Beef Satay and the Peking Duck.

KF
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Would love to recommend to friends overall great experience but felt rushed due to the volume of patrons

OT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The staff was so apologetic about our 20 minute wait for the table that they sent us a free appetizer. All of the food was great and came out quickly

SS
New York Area
236 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall2food2service3ambience2

Plates are very small, left there hungry. The edamame dumplings were tiny, 4 to a serving and totally tasteless. the Peking duck was also bland and chewy while the calamari salad had way too much cilantro and not enough calamari. Not impressed and won't return

e
Philadelphia
9 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Sampan provided an attentive, excellent experience for my wife and myself. It was a busy Saturday night and the place was packed, but the service and quality of the food was not affected in any way. We had the tasting and all of our courses were excellent, generally well-portioned, and came out well paced. Highly recommended.

OT
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We always have an amazing experience when we eat here. From the food to the service it’s always 5 stars.

JN
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall3food3service5ambience3

Some things have really changed and the food isn’t as good. The edamame dumplings were lumpy, the rock shrimp wasn’t crispy and the chicken boa just wasn’t as good as before.

M
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall3food1service3ambience4

Hopefully this was just a bad night we did not enjoy anything we ate besides the rib

DH
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Happy hour specials were amazing, service was perfect, food was so delicious - we tried everything!!

M
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We love Sampan, always a great vibe and good. Whenever friends are in town, this is where we bring them. This visit we received better service than ever before with sever Christiana. She was the best!!!

OT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience3

Food was good and came very fast. However as it was a Friday night the bar was crowded and loud and noise carried through wall opening.

PS
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Best birthday ever!

b
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Friendly staff and great food. Sampan is the perfect place to dine with friends. They have the best happy hour.

JL
New England
10 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2019
Overall4food3service5ambience2

Awesome service. Food is loaded with chili, red pepper, and peanut oil. Gastro issues? Do not eat here. Ambience is dark, loud, and the gender neutral bathrooms are dirty. If you are older, this might not be your gig.

DB
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Best and Favorite place in Philly! SOOOOOOOO GOOOOOOOOOOOOD!!!!!!!

D
Philadelphia
20 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience5

On our date night, we decided to give Sampan a try. It was well worth it. We went with the $45 tasting menu. This allowed us to try a little bit of everything from the entire menu. No sections were off limits. So now when we go back, we will have a better idea of things we would order again, and things we would stay away from. The ambiance was perfect. The staff was amazing. Cant wait to go back.

OT
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of my favorite spots in Philly. Do the chef tasting. It’s worth so worth it.

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 2, 2019
Overall3food4service3ambience4

Restaurant obviously wants to create a buzz by having you wait for your table despite them texting and calling to confirm reservation. We had someone parking the car-but they claimed it was ‘company policy’ not to seat a party if everyone wasn’t there...but when the 6th person came, still no table for 20 minutes. SHAME on you Sampan for not treating us like mature adults.
Food was great! But really-SO so many people hanging out waiting for tables-do you really not know how to manage reservations?????

CP
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

We had a great time. Fun atmosphere. Great options on specialty cocktails. Food is amazing and portions are great to share! We loved it. Service a bit slow at times but it was. Friday night so understandable.

Y
Philadelphia
188 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience3

Food here is very good and was adequate for my Vegan dining partner. Timing is a constant problem. Small plates came out lightning fast. In fact, too fast and then we had to wait forever and a day for our large plates. Server made an appearance at the start and end of the meal and a whole crew of servers brought our food including the manager. Cocktails are great but rather on the shallow side. Very loud so go earlier than later.

OT
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

The server was very attentive. Actually, the entirety of the staff is very much kind and courteous. The service was quick and speedy. Despite the large crowd dining, the server is able to continuous check back with us ensuring that we weren’t neglected. I dearly enjoyed my dining experience and will definitely come back again.

GF
Philadelphia
15 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our selections off of the GF menu was a perfect balance of duck, shrimp and vegetable dishes. The food is flavorful and the portions are perfect.

EW
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on October 29, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Sampan is a great spot for tapas-style Japanese cuisine. I visited Double Knot, the neighboring restaurant, twice before visiting Sampan and I find the menus to be comparable. Food is great at both and I particularly enjoyed the cheesesteak bao (on brand for Philadelphia) and the mushroom lo mein. I considered opting for the $45 tasting menu, but ended up being completely full from one side and two small plates for an even lower price than the tasting menu. Also, props to Sampan for having a drink called the Pink Lady during the month of October. Proceeds from the drink were donated to breast cancer research.

KH
Philadelphia
46 reviews
Dined on October 29, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A return visit... although it was quite a few years that I've been to the restaurant. It was great to return. I really enjoyed the multi course option. Excellent selections. Food was excellent. I will definitely return, and much sooner.

OT
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on October 29, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Celebrated my anniversary at sampan again, it’s always wonderful doing dinner here. The food comes out really fast and tasting super duper delicious! I love their specialty cocktail, my favorite is the Kantoi Road: it’s a spicy drink so beware. As for food, I always get the kimchi fried rice, tuna rice cracker, and the Brussels sprouts. They’re my favorite and it always hit the spot for me! Thank you for an amazing experience always, can’t wait to come back again!

OT
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was great , service was very friendly would definitely come back again

TD
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience4

The food was outstanding and the service was great. My wife loves the Wagyu Beef satay so much we had to order a second. And we had an ice cream sushi roll for dessert that was decadent.

CD
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

All around excellent!

JC
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on October 26, 2019
Overall4food3service5ambience4

This was my second time here. The first time was just the two of us and we got the tasting menu and it was great. Came back to celebrate my mother’s bday. I don’t think older

S
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on October 26, 2019
Overall3food5service3ambience4

Food was great, service not so much, with the exception of our waitress who was attentive and apologetic.
We made our reservation on OpenTable and arrived promptly at the time of our reservation. After we arrived, we were told it would be ~5 or so minutes until our table was ready. We grabbed a drink at the bar and started to wait. After 20 minutes, we went back up to the counter to check on our reservation, and the greeter seemed incredibly flustered - apparently they had totally forgotten about us. Nonetheless, we were seated and our waitress came and saw us promptly. She helped us order, suggesting some really good choices (two small plates, an entrée and side to share between the two of us). We got one small plate, then the entrée. The waitress returned asking if we wanted anything else, to which we responded that we were still waiting for 50% of our meal to arrive. She rushed to check on things, and we finally got the rest of our food, along with complimentary ice cream, which promptly melted before we had a chance to eat it. The food was fantastic, but really disappointing that it was so frenzied - we had a hard time being able to enjoy the ambience and our food because it arrived chaotically and out of order. Not something I would expect from such a pricey restaurant.

OT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on October 25, 2019
Overall1food1service2ambience3

Food was cold and not very flavorful. We were placed at a random table right near the bathrooms.

R
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Enjoyed sitting at the kitchen counter

LS
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

We had to wait for a little while despite having a reservation but once we were seated everything when smoothly and quickly! The food began coming out minutes after we ordered. All the food was amazing, we ordered a variety of dishes and there were 0 complaints about anything.

OT
1 review
Dined on October 23, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always a Great experience just need to change a few things back to how they were. Instead of Poached eggs on the kimchee fried rice go back to the fried egg. Also bring back the one inch punch drink.

LM
1 review
Dined on October 23, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great restaurant and food. We first came with a large group ant then brought back a smaller group because of the experience the first time. Very much enjoyed the concept and we will be back. Shout out to Brooke our server who created a great experience for us once we sat down.

Lydia

c
Philadelphia
19 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience3

No matter what I order here, it's always delicious. Have never been disappointed. And will always come back.

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 22, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience5

Reservation was at 8, and they weren’t able to seat us until 8:35. Once we were seated though the food was fantastic and service was great. It was just the initial wait that left a bad first impression.

VP
1 review
Dined on October 22, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Food was outstanding. Tasting menu was well worth it. Our server was great at accommodating our large group 12. There were gluten free and Vegan options which was a pleasant surprise. Only negative- they wouldn't seat our party of 12 until everyone arrived and the bar was too crowded to get drinks while we waited. Can't wait to come back again and try other menu items.

S
Philadelphia
11 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience3

We found Sampan on OpenTable and are always looking for new places to eat while in Philly. I have to say my wife and I were pleasantly surprise at how nice the place was, the wait staff was amazing, food was yummy and other than being a little noisy it was a great place to eat!!!! I'd recommend it to anyone that enjoys Asian food

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