About Sampan - Philadelphia

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.

124 South 13th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
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Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
Asian, Pan-Asian, Seafood

Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Everyday Happy Hour: Everyday

Cross Street:
Walnut

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(215) 732-3501

Website:
http://www.sampanphilly.com/

Catering:
Hors d' oeuvres packages start at $15 per person per hour and dinner packages start at $40 per person. Open bar packages start at $25 per person for the first two hours and $7 for each additional hour should you be looking to entertain. Bar packages must be combined with either an hors d' oeuvres package or a dinner package and are not offered on their own.

Parking Details:
Limited street parking is available, in addition to public parking lots on Sansom Street in between 12th & 13th Streets and 13th & Broad Streets. There is also a parking garage on the corner of 13th Street, in between Chestnut Street & Market Street.

Executive Chef:
Michael Schulson

Private Party Facilities:
Sampan was designed with entertaining in mind. Two identical dining rooms flank a central bar to allow for a total of 120 guests to occupy both dining rooms or a cocktail reception in excess of 150. The outdoor Graffiti Bar can host up to 75 additional guests with the same menus offered.

Private Party Contact:
Bridget Baran: (888) 858-6536

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Sampan is the perfect location for entertaining. Two identical dining rooms flank a central bar for a welcoming feeling with great energy. The restaurant can seat up to 120 for a sit down dinner or in excess of 150 for a social gathering. The outdoor Graffiti Bar can host an additional 75 and is fully heated and open 10 months out of the year. Our event coordinator will work with you personally and all menus are fully customizable.

Sampan - Philadelphia Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.4

ambience

4.3

value

4.2

noise

Moderate

95% would recommend it to a friend

Creative Cuisine (96)
Hot Spot (86)
Good for a Date (83)
See All
Tasting Menu (72)
Fun (70)
Fit for Foodies (66)
Vibrant Bar Scene (59)
Happy Hour (57)
Modern Decor (54)
Special Occasion (53)
Tapas (50)
Good for Groups (46)
Casual (42)
Good for Birthdays (41)
Neighborhood Gem (39)
Bar Seating (38)
Open Kitchen (34)
Worth the Drive (31)
Handcrafted Cocktails (29)
Good for Anniversaries (29)
Authentic (28)
Romantic (26)
Good Vegetarian Options (24)
Pre/post Theatre (23)
People Watching (21)
Spicy (19)
Late-night Find (18)
Comfort Food (15)
Cozy (15)
Outstanding Value (15)
Business Meals (13)
Quick Bite (13)
Great for Outdoor Dining (13)
Family Style (12)
Great for Lunch (10)
Gluten Free Options (10)
Healthy (8)
Vegan (8)
Sunday Lunch (6)
Notable Wine List (4)
Great for Brunch (4)
Local Ingredients (4)
Paleo Friendly (4)
Quiet Conversation (2)
Great Beer (2)
Molecular Gastronomy (2)
Afternoon Tea (1)
Dancing (1)
Kid-friendly (1)
Organic (1)
Scenic View (1)
Private Room (1)
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2469 reviews
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 (Philadelphia)·Dined 5 days ago

Food was very tasty. The portion was very small considering the price. The biggest complaint I have was that It was too noisy for us to carry on a good conversation.

Tags: Creative Cuisine
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food4
ambience2
service4
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 6 days ago

Good food & good service. Waitress accommodated our need for pace of delivery of food.

Tags: Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 6 days ago

At this point, stick with their dumplings and salads - both consistently very good.

Tags: Casual
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food3
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 6 days ago

Great food, great atmosphere and great happy hour specials!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 7 days ago

Fabulous dinner for our 10th wedding anniversary!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined 7 days ago

Food was outstanding, very unique and surprising. The restaurant is beautiful lots to look at. Loved the random movie quotes playing in the bathroom, kept it whimsical and not too serious. Would definitely go back!

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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 7 days ago

As always Sampan was amazing. Food was tremendous and so was the staff. I would strongly suggest this to anyone and to do the tasting menu. Great variety and for a couple or a group!

Tags: Fun, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Bar Seating, Spicy, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails, Happy Hour, Tasting Menu, Fit for Foodies, Authentic, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 19, 2017

We enjoyed several appetizers including sliders and pot stickers. We loved the honeycomb and did not like the mist.

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, People Watching
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 17, 2017

Have been there several times. Each occasion is always very good, never disappointing.

Tags: Vegan, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on May 16, 2017

Good food a little pricy. Excessively noisy with music cranked too loud for good ambiance.

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food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 14, 2017

Everything was fine except for being rushed to finish and give our table to the next party.

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food4
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on May 13, 2017

Very good food, excellent cocktails. The tasting menus are absolutely worth it. It is a bit dark and loud so it isn't the best place for children. The biggest complaint I have were the bathrooms: when you walk into them there is some background noise that you can eventually identify as lines from movies. This doesn't match the environment of the restaurant but it wouldn't be a big deal if it weren't for the fact that there were horror music lines mixed into the quotes. Its pretty startling to hear "I want to play a game" as you're unzipping. Everyone in my party that used the restroom found this to be pretty unnerving and it didn't make sense to why anyone to choose to use that as background noise (just use the pleasant music that was playing in the rest of the restaurant).

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, Good Vegetarian Options, Tasting Menu
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food4
ambience1
service5
value3

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 12, 2017

Everything was excellent and our server was super helpful in guiding us on what to order, how much, etc. Great experience all around!

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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 11, 2017

Went on a date with my boyfriend where we shared our first meal together when we first met .

Tags: Romantic, Good Vegetarian Options, Good for a Date, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 11, 2017

Came here for a first date. Waitress was extremely annoying. After we ordered drinks we were told that they needed our table for a large party and we had to pay our bill and leave. It was so embarrassing. We were rushed out after ordering drinks. I would never come back after this experience.

Tags: Happy Hour
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food5
ambience4
service1
value1

 
 (Baltimore)·Dined on May 11, 2017

Amazing!! My daughter graduated from UArts on 5/11/17. She selected Sanpam for her celebration, I had reservations about her choice. I have to admit this was a wonderful choice. I would recommend Sanpam again and again and I will dine here again.

Tags: Late-night Find, Good for Anniversaries, Romantic, Happy Hour, Special Occasion, Hot Spot, Creative Cuisine, Quick Bite, Worth the Drive, Tasting Menu, Pre/post Theatre, Great for Brunch, Neighborhood Gem, Bar Seating, Tapas
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 10, 2017

Our waitress was great and I loved the food. I can not wait to go back.

Tags: Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 8, 2017

Samantha was one of the best servers we have had at Sampan. Listened to us - which we appreciated. Vegetarian menu great!

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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 8, 2017

Always an amazing experience! In and out! Will be back to try the tasting menu

Tags: Happy Hour, Neighborhood Gem, Family Style
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 8, 2017

Great food in a modern, very pleasant environment.
Loved the tuna tartar, the duck and the brussel sprouts.
Food is fresh, creative and very tasty. We will be back.

Tags: Casual, Late-night Find, Notable Wine List, Bar Seating, People Watching, Fit for Foodies, Hot Spot, Vibrant Bar Scene, Happy Hour, Creative Cuisine, Handcrafted Cocktails, Modern Decor, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Anniversaries, Pre/post Theatre, Neighborhood Gem, Fun
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food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 7, 2017

Seemed like we were being rushed. kind of like they want to turn over tables fast to make more money. Servers came back to take our plates too quickly and did not ask- just took! Food was great though.
If you want a slow, relaxed dining experience this is not the place.

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food4
ambience3
service3
value2

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 7, 2017

Food was very good. The food service was much too quick, each dish seemed rushed. Also, the noise level was very high making conversation difficult.

Tags: Happy Hour
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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 6, 2017

Delicious food! Love coming for center city sips. Everything on the menu is devine!

Tags: Healthy, Tapas, Fun, Great for Outdoor Dining, Happy Hour
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food5
ambience4
service3
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on May 6, 2017

Sampan never disappoints. The food was spot on as always. Our server Ryan was very friendly and knowledgeable of the menu.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Hot Spot, Special Occasion, Authentic, Good Vegetarian Options, Bar Seating, Open Kitchen, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, Romantic, Good for a Date, Great for Outdoor Dining, Happy Hour, Worth the Drive, Gluten Free Options, Fun, Paleo Friendly, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on May 6, 2017

One of, if not the best meal I've had in Philly. Super packed on a Friday night and we were able to try 8+ different dishes in under and hour, with dessert included. Fantastic service and the food was better than it looked, which is incredible considering how much detail went into plating and appearance. I don't ever give out 10's to restaurants but Sampan gets one!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Vibrant Bar Scene, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on May 5, 2017

My server couldn't have been cooler and was very helpful in choosing my dinner. I loved everything, including my seat at the open kitchen.

Tags: Hot Spot, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on May 3, 2017

The server was very helpful in making suggestions. The food was delicious and a good value. I can't wait to go back

Tags: People Watching, Creative Cuisine, Hot Spot, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Tapas, Authentic, Casual
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on May 3, 2017

I love sampan. Always have prob always will. Top 5 for me easily in Philly.

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food4
ambience5
service4

vip
 (Charleston)·Dined on May 2, 2017

Unbelievably delicious! Creative tasty food in a modern eclectic spot. Outstanding service from knowledgeable and fun servers.

Best bits: crispy Brussel sprouts, edamame dumplings, duck, satays (beef, chicken or OMG scallops). Just go; you're gonna love it!!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 30, 2017

This is one of our favorite spots. The food is creative and the flavors always blend well. It's always an easy date night decision. If you're going between 6PM and 10PM, book a reservation or expect an hour wait. The servers are very personable, the bartenders make fabulous drinks, and they have great vegan/ vegetarian options. We love it here!

Tags: Casual, Fit for Foodies, Good Vegetarian Options, Good for a Date, Tasting Menu, Vegan, People Watching, Fun, Great Beer, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Atlantic City)·Dined on April 29, 2017

We where pleasantly surprised with the service & the delicious food at Sampan. The server was extremely helpful with our food selection since this was our 1st visit. We will definitely be returning for another sampling of the cuisine. Any one who loves delicious Asian food will love this place.

Tags: Good for a Date, Casual, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on April 28, 2017

Both of my visits here have been to enjoy drinks at the bar. I happened to order happy hour food items this time around as well and was not disappointed. The quantity is great, the food comes out hot and fresh, there are several vegetarian options for those seeking that as well. Drinks: I liked the kamikaze mist cocktail, it's tequila based.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Bar Seating
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 27, 2017

The food was great but the drink situation was a mess. We ordered our whiskey neat and we got them on the rocks and our waitress returned with the same whiskey poured into a new glass that had been watered down by the ice. It was only after we complained that she returned with the actual drinks that we ordered. Also, we did not know that whiskey ordered neat has a surcharge of a dollar; that should be indicated on the menu.

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food3
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 26, 2017

First time at Sampan the food was incredible really recommend chefs special so you can taste a little of everything definitely will be back.

Tags: Tasting Menu
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 24, 2017

Good food, but really noisy! We brought some clients here for dinner. I had not been for a while and had forgotten how loud it is inside. However, it did not seem to bother our clients, and they LOVED the food and the sake flights.

We had: edamame dumplings, pork pot stickers, mushroom satay, chicken satay, short ribs with noodles , chicken fried rice, brussel sprouts and broccoli (there were 5 of us!). Favorite was short ribs, least favorite was broccoli (boring and steamed). Best desserts ever, especially the rice krispie sushi! YUMMY.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Tapas
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food5
ambience4
service4
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 23, 2017

The food was really good but the portions small for the price. Server was really nice but he forgot a few of our dishes.

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food4
ambience4
service3
value2

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 22, 2017

We were dining pre-theater on a Saturday evening and at 6 PM the restaurant was already very active! We were running late but the front were very understanding and accommodating! We wound up getting on of the tables at the front near the window looking out onto 13th, which was really fortunate. The one knock about Sampan has to be the noise level. With our table we only had to deal with sound coming from one direction and not all sides. Full bar with plenty of specialty cocktails and decent but not extensive list of wines by the glass. The menu offers plenty of small plates options but we opted for one small plate and an entree each. Our server, Amber, who was excellent, suggested that, since the servings are a little slight, that we might want to add a side. We normally would not but chose something different, the duck fried rice which was outstanding. We switched appetizers because my wife does not do spicy and the tuna cracker had some zip to it. The hamachi crudo had a wonderful presentation and was very flavorful. The sea bass and scallops entrees were very good choices. Amber was right, the portions are not large so the side dish came in handy. Definitely try the Yuzu tart for dessert and the sushi was interesting; vanilla ice cream wrapped in a peanut butter rice krispie treat served with chocolate sauce on the side. It had been seven years since we last visited Sampan and came away with a so-so feeling but, upon this visit, we wouldn't hesitate to recommend it and stop back sooner when heading to the Forrest for a show!

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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 21, 2017

The new fried chicken preparation is vastly inferior to the previous one. The umami chicken is nicely fried, but almost devoid of any flavor. The Korean Fried Chicken was succulent and extremely flavorful. Also, the brussel sprouts came out as 80% loose leaves and 20% actual sprouts.

To be fair, the General Tso Soup Dumplings are incredible. I very much enjoyed the BBQ Chow Fun.

Tags: Modern Decor, Bar Seating, Hot Spot
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food3
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 21, 2017

Reserved for a group of 10, changed to 6, changed to 7... staff was very willing to accommodate and easy going. We were seated right away although it was a busy evening. Our waiter was not as knowledgeable about the menu and options as they probably need to be in such a fast paced environment. The restaurant is extremely loud. Drinks were watered down. The food was amazing. In all, I would love to return and I highly recommend the tasting menu.

Tags: Good for Groups, Open Kitchen, Tasting Menu, Good for Birthdays
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food5
ambience2
service3
value3

 
 (Montreal)·Dined on April 21, 2017

My girlfriend was visiting Philadelphia for short couple of days and we were excited to try Sampan for a fun and overdue date night. We even arrived 10 minutes early so that we can get seated on time. We waited by the bar for another 20 minutes beyond our reservation time to be seated while three other parties of the same size for the same time arrived after us and were immediately seated. Turned out that they mistakenly seated the wrong couple ... understandable, but not even so much as an apology was given. Onwards and upwards; or so we thought. We finally got seated and then waiting another ten minutes to get a menu... again seeing another couple get seated next to us, greeted, and to have their order taken. No attention was paid to our table by the same waitress who didn't even mention any specials or explain the menu. The food came, and needless to say it was great as expected. It was both creative, delicious, and palate pleasing. Unfortunately the service continued to leave much to be desired and left a sour taste in both of our mouths. While my water would get filled periodically, not once in the entire meal did my dates glass be refilled(we had to resort to trading glasses with each other). We put all that behind us and we're ready to relax and finish our drinks while we waited for the dessert. EXCEPT, our waitress swiftly whisked away the empty plate remaining ... along with our 1/4 full fish bowl that we were still drinking. We turned to get her attention but she was gone... along with what was unfortunately left of our expensive but refreshing dark and stormy. The mini ice cream cones for dessert were a cute reprise but, although Sampan's food met my expectations, the service itself tarnished what would have been an otherwise great evening.

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food5
ambience4
service1
value4

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