We all have our comfort zones. You find several restaurants and bars you really like and you keep going to them. There is nothing wrong with that. But once in a while, you need to expand your boundaries and try something new. We did just that the other night and I’m so glad we did. On a good friend’s recommendation, we went to Porta for their happy hour and it was outstanding.
When you first walk into Porta, the first words out of your mouth is, wow! The eclectic mix of architecture, art and space is amazing. Super high ceilings, graffiti walls, classic accents, all mixed together and it works beautifully. It’s a big restaurant that has three floors and three bars. The upper floor is used more for private events. It’s a mix of so many designs but each one compliments the other. Who would of thought that graffiti and classic design would work so well. Porta thinks outside the box, not just in the decor but the food as well.
Porta is known for their several house made items and luckily all of them are featured on their happy hour menu. This include house-made mozzarella, ricotta, meatballs and sausage. For twenty dollars you can order the Meatball Slider, the Many Thanks Slider, the Fried Polenta, the Fried Mozz and the Marinated Olives. Of course we tried them all and they were delicious. The meatball slider consists of their house-made meatball and house-made ricotta, basil served on a brioche bun. The fried polenta was amazing! Fried very thinly, it consisted of parmigiano, reggiano, garlic and extra virgin love oil. Not bad for twenty bucks!
The drinks specials for happy hour was their White Door, Red Door, Rosy Cheeks and Tricycle Race. They also have beer and wine specials. The employees at the Philadelphia location as well as the New Jersey locations all work together when it comes to creating and naming the drinks. We tried the White and Red Door, Rosy Cheeks and the Silver Girl, which was full priced. All the drinks were delicious! Our favorites were probably the Red Door which was made with Grand Marnier, triple sec, pineapple juice, red wine and topped with prosecco, and the Silver Girl that was made with Epsilon Blanco tequila, lime juice, cucumber water, long hots and agave! If you like spicy like I do, you’ll love the Silver Girl. Our bartender, Dina, was super friendly and very attentive. She made sure that we were satisfied with everything we ordered.
Porta is also known for their Neopolitian pizzas. They have two pizza ovens that were made and shipped from Naples, Italy. The pies on the menu looked so good that we had to order the Italian Stallion pizza. It is made with San Marzano tomatoes, house-made mozzarella, gorgonzola, house-made Italian sausage and long hots. It was absolutely delicious. When you bite into it, you immediately taste the fennel sausage and then get the nice heat from the long hots. A favorite among the staff and it’s easy to see why.
It was our first time and Porta and it’s already on our favorites list. The happy hour menu is one of the best we’ve seen in terms of options and price. But like us, you’ll end up staying past happy hour because it’s hard to leave here. The super friendly staff, the decor, food and drinks will keep you coming back.