I stumbled upon Patty’s Place, an Italian restaurant, by chance. Located in a small strip shopping center in the Darlington Corners section of West Chester, Pennsylvania, (at the intersection of Route 202 and 926), it is easy to miss. From the exterior, it appeared to be a very small pizza place, with just a few tables seen from the front, a casual place where shoppers could get a quick bite to eat – assuming one of the very few tables were available – and be on their way. Much to my (happy) surprise, Patty’s Place turned out to be much more than I expected.
Upon entering, I passed the single row of small tables and stepped up to the counter to place my order. As I did so, I barely registered what appeared to be a small alcove to my left. The “small alcove” turned out to be a very nice, good-sized room, with Italian-themed hand-painted murals on the walls, capable of seating perhaps a hundred dining patrons with ease. The young man who had initially greeted me at the front counter escorted me into the main dining room, and allowed me to select a table. I felt like I had walked into a classic “pizza joint” and it had magically transported me to a relatively nice Italian restaurant.
The server – the same young man who had escorted me to the table – immediately offered to take my beverage order. I mentioned that I was fairly new to the area, and he (correctly) took this as an invitation to provide some background on the restaurant.
Patty’s Place changed ownership early in 2010, and the new owners are experienced restaurateurs, operating another restaurant in Downingtown, Pennsylvania. The server spoke about the restaurant, displaying an obvious pride in being there. He mentioned that the owners have some theme nights, such as a Latin-night buffet. Surprisingly, they also offer breakfast, something I do not associate with typical Italian restaurants. I ordered some pizza, which arrived nice and hot to the table. It looked quite good and my eyes did not deceive my stomach – it was good.
While there, I checked into the ladies’ restroom; if a restaurant doesn’t bother to keep a restroom clean and well-stocked, I have to wonder how clean the kitchen area is. I found that the restroom was adequately clean, and care had been taken even there to provide some décor.
While the restaurant is not “upscale”, it turned out to be far more than just a little pizza joint. I decided to try the restaurant for dinner, and brought along a dining partner. We were greeted by a young lady as our server, and she was polite. This time I ordered a cheese steak sandwich, my partner ordered a hoagie, and we split cheese fries as an appetizer. The cheese fries were wonderful; the restaurant did not skimp on the cheese either. Both of our sandwiches were excellent, but having partially stuffed ourselves on the cheese fries, we couldn’t finish our sandwiches. The server happily boxed up the unfinished portion of the sandwiches for us; there was enough left that we each had lunch for the next day. The portions were definitely good-sized and we both enjoyed our food. Both I and my dining partner found the bill to be reasonable, and just as important, the bill was accurate.
I would classify Patty’s Place as a mid-level, casual Italian restaurant, serving both simple and moderate fare. I’m quite sure that I will be back in the future, perhaps to try breakfast next, since that is the only meal I haven’t sampled there.
34 East Street Road
West Chester, PA 19382-8412