Chestnut Hill spans from Cresheim Valley Drive to the east to Northwestern Avenue to the west; north to south, it encompasses the length of the Orange Trail in Wissahickon Valley Park to the south, running north to Stenton Avenue on the border of Wyndmoor. Residents adopt the 19118 zip code.
For a morning jolt, Chestnut Hill Coffee Company, which roasts beans itself, takes pride in its espresso drinks, while also offering a collection of pastries, desserts and soups. There’s also a Starbucks conveniently located near the SEPTA Regional Rail station.
Cake offers a simple-but-refined breakfast of brioche French toast topped with honey butter and pecans, a quiche of the day, vegetable frittata or a smoked salmon plate – though don’t leave without picking up a carrot cake to take a fork to later. An island breakfast is served at Louie’s Little Hut, with breakfast quesadillas and burritos, waffle sandwiches and a breakfast burger with avocado. Barry’s Buns makes rotating varieties of sticky buns and cinnamon rolls from scratch.
Samosas, chicken tikka masala and shrimp curry are on the menu at Indian restaurant Banjara, with right-priced combo platters for lunch. Primo Hoagies operates one of its coveted sandwich locations out of the neighborhood, and Fiesta Pizza offers the usual pizza and stromboli options but, also, gems like a chickpea spread, baked feta, spanakopita and an abundance of salad options. For a sit-down lunch affair, Chestnut Grill on Germantown Avenue perfects brunch on weekends with options like a lamb burger and huevos rancheros, best scarfed down with an Old Bay Bloody Mary waiting in the wings on a nearby coaster.
Mica Restaurant, a cozy BYOB that only serves dinner and has an ever-evolving menu, is inspired by seasonal produce and takes small liberties with classic dishes – like a moulard duck with turnips and grilled onions that’s dressed in juniper honey. CinCin is a beloved pan-Asian spot for quality saute, lo mein, orange beef and other Chinese recipes. Paris Bistro shines with its truffled goat cheese burger, trout and duck cassoulet with garlic sausage.
Locals also love to hit up Trolley Car Diner for casual eats any time of day – inside a 1952 Mt. Airy trolley car. For a nightcap, head to El Poquito for mezcal and fresh-juiced margaritas, or McNally’s for a beer and a “Schmitter.”
Night Kitchen Bakery and Cafe nails cakes, pies and puddings for dessert; Bredenbeck’s Bakery & Ice Cream Parlor is where to pick up Bassetts ice cream without making the trip to Reading Terminal Market.
Nature enthusiasts will be delighted by nearby Morris Arboretum, a Victorian landscape garden with trees and plants – from Africa and elsewhere – not found in other parts of the country. Wissahickon Valley Park also neighbors Chestnut Hill, with thousands of acres of creek, woodlands, hiking trails, rocks and history to explore.
The Woodmere Art Museum is a gorgeously landscaped, chic art retreat for viewing world-class paintings, photographs and sculptures.
Art galleries dot the neighborhood: Gravers Lane, with jewelry, glasswork, sculptures, fibers and paintings; McCarty Gallery, with fine art antiques that transport to days gone by; and the long-running Borrelli’s, a particular delight for those who like painted landscapes, interiors and portraits – or just need their artwork framed.
Chestnut Hill is, itself, a nationally recognized historic district, mostly for its significant properties – Gravers Lane Station, by Frank Furness; the Esherick House, by Louis Kahn and several works from G. W. & W. D. Hewitt, the architecture firm known for designing Center City’s The Bellevue.
Also worth noting is the increasingly popular Harry Potter Festival, in which businesses collaborate for special Potter-themed events and hordes of Potter fans dress in their Hogwarts best – wand in-hand. Germantown Avenue is, similarly, host to other themed festivals year-round.
Students living in the 19118 zip code, for elementary and middle grades, attend the JS Jenks Academy for Arts and Sciences, the neighborhood’s sole public school. The Norwood-Fontbonne Academy is also available as a private, Catholic option. Students may, for secondary grades, attend all-city schools like Central High School or magnet school Julia R. Masterman Middle and High School.
Springside Chestnut Hill Academy, a private school on Willow Grove Avenue, is an all-grades school; The Crefeld School, also private, makes up middle and high-school grades. Our Mother of Consolation Parish School is a private Catholic school on Chestnut Hill Avenue for elementary and middle grades.
For grocery shopping, Acme Markets takes the top spot as the neighborhood’s marquee major grocer, while Weaver’s Way Co-op is the most recognized of the smaller, local-oriented outposts – with not just organic produce, but also specialty pet products.
Other markets in the neighborhood include Top of the Hill Farmer’s Market, known for fresh seafood; The Fresh Market, an upscale grocer with rotating specials and a selection of wines; Chestnut Hill Farmers Market, with local, seasonal produce even in the winter; What a Crock, which sells quality pre-packaged meals; and free-range poultry at Neidermyer’s. The bustling Market at the Fareway, on main thoroughfare Germantown Avenue, is a failsafe for miscellaneous artisanal food items.
Along Germantown Avenue is a mish-mash of additional shopping – to cite a few, Wissahickon Cycling for bikes, Rebel for yogi apparel, BNB Cigars for premium tobacco, Statement for boutique consignment perusal, and Lavender HIll Home for housewares.
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You may also be interested in homes located in these nearby neighborhoods.
Hilly with small-town charm and big-city access, this neighborhood scrapes the edges of the city while offering its own main street filled with shops, bars, restaurants and a bridge trail branched off from the thoroughfare.
Neighboring Manayunk to the northwest, Roxborough is a historic, largely residential neighborhood with well-preserved townhomes that date back to Victorian years. It borders the Wissahickon Creek and its associated park,
A picturesque neighborhood east of the Wissahickon, East Falls is a quick commute to the city with its own collection of bars, restaurants and easy access to the coveted Kelly Drive bike trail.
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