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

4.5

ambience

4.3

value

4.2

noise

Moderate

94% would recommend it to a friend

Good for a Date (95)
Creative Cuisine (92)
Hot Spot (86)
See All
Tasting Menu (79)
Fit for Foodies (74)
Fun (73)
Vibrant Bar Scene (63)
Special Occasion (61)
Tapas (56)
Happy Hour (55)
Modern Decor (55)
Good for Groups (50)
Good for Birthdays (46)
Casual (42)
Open Kitchen (41)
Bar Seating (40)
Worth the Drive (37)
Good for Anniversaries (36)
Neighborhood Gem (36)
Romantic (33)
Handcrafted Cocktails (27)
Authentic (27)
Pre/post Theatre (23)
Outstanding Value (22)
Good Vegetarian Options (19)
Cozy (19)
Family Style (19)
Spicy (17)
Late-night Find (16)
People Watching (14)
Comfort Food (13)
Quick Bite (13)
Business Meals (13)
Gluten Free Options (13)
Great for Lunch (11)
Healthy (9)
Great for Outdoor Dining (7)
Sunday Lunch (6)
Vegan (5)
Notable Wine List (5)
Kid-friendly (4)
Paleo Friendly (4)
Great for Brunch (3)
Scenic View (2)
Great Beer (2)
Local Ingredients (2)
Organic (1)
Disabled Access (1)
Quiet Conversation (1)
Private Room (1)
Dancing (1)
Afternoon Tea (1)
Molecular Gastronomy (1)
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2430 reviews
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vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 14 hours ago

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 2 days ago

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

 
 (Montreal)·Dined 2 days ago

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

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 3 days ago

Simply put, the food is amazing. This is one of my favorite restaurants in Philly, for any occasion. I've taken dates, family, and business colleagues here - each time the staff was awesome and the food was out of this world. (Try the Brussel Sprouts, they're the best!) The first time I came here was for a bachelorette party. It was a last minute choice, but it was one of my favorite parts about the evening. Whether you're coming for dinner, happy hour, or just a quick bite, you can't go wrong with Sampan.

Tags: Good for Groups, Quick Bite, Creative Cuisine, Good Vegetarian Options, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for a Date, Vibrant Bar Scene, Happy Hour, Fun, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined 3 days ago

Love the variety of dishes. Perfect for date night! Sharing the courses was a dream.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 5 days ago

Fantastic food. Three of us split 10 plates and loved every bite. Loud but fun. Best meal I've had out this year.

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Creative Cuisine, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined 5 days ago

Great food, great service, overall fun night. Get the tasting menu.

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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined 5 days ago

Disappointed is the word. When my date asked for Tito's on the rocks, he was given something that was surely a cheap alternative vodka. We are bartenders in New York, we know our Tito's. Our waitress, Amanda was the name I believe, was cold and uninterested. She didn't seem to be enthusiastic about her job or servicing her customers. I've been in the restaurant business for 7 years now and the service we received would just be unacceptable in any establishment i've worked in. The food was good, not great.

Tags: Cozy, Modern Decor
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food3
ambience3
service1
value3

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 6 days ago

Great vegetarian menu. Sake overpriced but otherwise great place.

Tags: Good Vegetarian Options
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food5
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (New Orleans)·Dined on April 16, 2017

Great food. Went on a Saturday night so the service wasn't great, but, it was really crowded. To be expected. But I was on a date and it was really just too loud in there for conversation. I think I'd rather go back with my boys, who I'd rather hear less of anyway lol

Tags: Good for Groups, Good for Birthdays
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food5
ambience3
service3
value3

vip
 (Atlanta)·Dined on April 16, 2017

Food was just ok. Atmosphere was extremely loud and too dark to see menu. Could not carry on conversation. Food service was very rushed . Not a very pleasant experience...would not return or recommend.

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food3
ambience1
service2
value2

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on April 15, 2017

Fantastic food! Best Asian food I have had. Great service and cool vibe

Tags: Hot Spot, Fun, Happy Hour, Good for Groups, Open Kitchen
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 15, 2017

the food was delicious but the tables were on top of each other! We sat at a table for 2 & the table next to us was touching our table, so when the people sat next to us it was like they joined us! Everything else was great but they need to give people more space.

Tags: Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience2
service5
value4

 
 (Atlantic City)·Dined on April 15, 2017

One of the best restaurants in Philly!!! Delicious food amazing service and great vibe!!!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Tapas, Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 15, 2017

delicious and exciting as usual. One of or favorites. Fun food!

Tags: Open Kitchen, Fit for Foodies, Modern Decor, Pre/post Theatre, Tasting Menu, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 15, 2017

Great food, as usual. 😊 The pork bun are amazing and the edamame dumplings...so good that we ended up ordering a second serving. The Waugh beef is tender and flavor full and the broccoli nice and charred! Only disappointment, the wine list. The prices are high for what they offer, we ordered a 70$ bottle of wine and wasn't good at all. The red wine was too cold, and felt very bitter even after we left it breath.
Next time will stick with the sake (they are good!)

Tags: Happy Hour, Vibrant Bar Scene, Tapas
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 14, 2017

Great as usual except for chicken bun was a tad light on the chicken.

Tags: Cozy, Bar Seating, Quick Bite, Modern Decor, Happy Hour, Casual, Open Kitchen, Special Occasion
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 14, 2017

I have dined at Sampan probably 20 times and never once have I been disappointed. The good is always amazing, fresh and quickly prepared. The drinks are strong and refreshing. The wagyu beef skewers are seriously unreal. Make sure you get them. We will absolutely be back soon!

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries, Fun, Good for Groups, Gluten Free Options, Fit for Foodies, Tasting Menu, Special Occasion, Bar Seating, Modern Decor, Happy Hour
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 12, 2017

Never had a bad meal there. Highly recommend the tasting menu

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Tasting Menu, Vibrant Bar Scene, Bar Seating
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 11, 2017

Excellent service from a highly flexible staff. We had a large party that changed size by the time we arrived and they handled it no problem. Delicious as always.

Tags: Fun, Special Occasion, Pre/post Theatre, Creative Cuisine, Modern Decor
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food5
ambience3
service5
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on April 11, 2017

Amazing Food! Happy hours small plates priced right for excellent assortment for tasting! Would come again....and again!

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Open Kitchen, Authentic, Tapas
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 7, 2017

Amazing. One of my favs.

Tags: Hot Spot, Good for Anniversaries, Molecular Gastronomy, Late-night Find, Good for a Date, Great for Lunch
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 6, 2017

Overall Excellent! Great Asian cuisine with modern decor and a cool vibe.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Groups, Handcrafted Cocktails, Special Occasion, Tapas, Good for a Date, Romantic, Modern Decor, Vibrant Bar Scene, Fun, Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on April 5, 2017

Table not ready at 7. Told to stand in bar area it might be 20 mins. Noise level was deafning. We left.

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food2
ambience2
service1
value2

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 5, 2017

We had the general to dumpling, short rib and the duck fried rice. Everything was so delicious and amazing I wanted to cry. Lol

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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on April 2, 2017

The chefs tasting is an excellent option. Had a lovely time with my boyfriend while traveling through Philadelphia. Service was excellent. Music was a bit loud but we acclimated to it quickly so it wasn't much of a bother.

Tags: Modern Decor, Worth the Drive, Gluten Free Options, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 2, 2017

The food is always prepared well. They are fast in getting the food out tot you. The services is fantastic and there is not a bad item on the menu.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good for Birthdays, Tapas, Casual, Authentic, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 1, 2017

The food was fantastic! Most of us ordered the chef's tasting menu--$45 pp, which was a great deal. We chose some of the items and let the chef do the rest. My son-in-law, an Atkins man, was allowed to order separately from the menu, very accommodating of them. We loved the beef (both on a stick and the filet as a main)and scallops in particular, though the crispy crab and soup dumplings were also hits. The seven of us sat at one table but broke into two groups in order to hear--the noise might be the only drawback.

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, Happy Hour, Creative Cuisine, Fun, Tapas, Good for Groups, Tasting Menu, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Cleveland)·Dined on March 30, 2017

Creative cuisine. Wonderful flavors. Friendly staff. Highly recommend

Tags: Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 30, 2017

Got the $45 tasting menu which is nice because you get to pick a dish from each of 7 categories. The only choice which fell flat was the fried chicken which was a bit dry - everything else was delicious, favorite was the sea bass and the edamame dumplings. I really enjoyed the sake flight. The noise level is very high due to open kitchen, loud music vibe, and sheer size. The service got the job done but smileless, impatient, and bored appearing. The pace hustles, we were in and out in an hour even with the 7 course tasting menu, the check was brought prior to dessert!

Tags: Hot Spot, Handcrafted Cocktails, Gluten Free Options
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food5
ambience4
service3
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 30, 2017

Had a great dinner with some old friends. Our waitress was super nice and very attentive.

Tags: Happy Hour, Modern Decor, Casual, Good for a Date, Fun, Good for Birthdays, Quick Bite, Neighborhood Gem, Business Meals
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on March 30, 2017

Always great! Service is always consistent and excellent.

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food4
ambience4
service5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 29, 2017

Amazing food, would definitely recommend. 2 thumbs up for sure!

Tags: Business Meals, Modern Decor, Good for a Date, Romantic, Great for Lunch, Hot Spot, Good for Birthdays, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups, Tasting Menu, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 29, 2017

Great quality food but excessively loud music and loud customer base. Would not recommend if you wanted anything other than a shouting conversation with your dinner companion(s)

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food5
ambience4
service4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 28, 2017

Great food, but this is the second time I've had a sour ending during my visit. Previously I experienced being asked to take our drinks to the bar to finish up so that they can give our table to another party that was waiting. Extremely rude. I finally got over that experience and decided to bring business associates to the restaurant for dinner. At the end of dinner, our server took our dessert orders, then rushed off and hurried back with our check. Yes, our server handed me the check before serving us dessert. What is this, Ihop? Extremely rude, and quite frankly it soured a lovely evening.

Tags: Hot Spot
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food5
ambience4
service4
value3

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on March 28, 2017

Before you even go to the restaurant, check out the Grafitti Bar which is right behind it and connected to Sampan. Have an appetizer or two and a glass of sake. It is a fantastic experience. We had the tasting menu and absolutely loved it. You get to choose two apps and then one each of meat, sides, fish, etc. It is served family style and was absolutely wonderful. The edamame dumpling was phenomenal. We also loved the duck. Between two of us we had one sake flight and it lasted the entire meal. It is a great way to try everything.

The seating is tight and at one point the meals starts coming out way too fast leaving no room on our table. It was unfortunate the wait staff didn't pace these better.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Family Style, Hot Spot, Fit for Foodies, Outstanding Value, Modern Decor
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food5
ambience4
service2
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 26, 2017

Waited a bit for our table. Food was good. Very Small portions, but good. Staff was friendly, but we did feel a little rushed.

Tags: Tapas, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Happy Hour, Good for Birthdays, Hot Spot, Open Kitchen, Fun
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food4
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on March 26, 2017

Good food, small plates, very loud but fun

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food4
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 25, 2017

General Tso soup and edamame dumplings are to die for. We also love the tuna crackers, crab wonton tacos and the Korean BBQ. Always new items added but the staples have stayed on which keeps us coming back time and time again.

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food5
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on March 25, 2017

Sampan was great for a fun/romantic date night! The food came very quickly and the servers were nice and moved fast. Our main server gave her recommendations on the menu selections and was pretty attentive. We tried a few of the small plates and were very happy with them. It was an awesome date! We would definitely return. The only cons were the very dark lighting and the loud noise level. I may just be getting old though so take or leave that comment!

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Spicy, Gluten Free Options, Tasting Menu, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Romantic, Hot Spot, Fit for Foodies, Late-night Find, Cozy, Vibrant Bar Scene, Authentic, Modern Decor, Fun, Worth the Drive, Special Occasion
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

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