JG Domestic – Bright, Friendly and Great Food

Photo courtesy JG Domestic

Business Travelers: Do you recommend JG Domestic for

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Co-workers, Colleagues or Customers?
Conducting Business; having a Business meeting?
Dining alone?
Women Business Travelers dining alone?
Friendly staff, patrons and good service?
Enjoyable food?
Meeting other Business Travelers?
Rating: 4.1/5 (3 votes cast)

It was Friday, March 30, 2012 and I was meeting friends who worked in Cira Center for a lunch meal at the bar at JG Domestic.  JG Domestic is in the lobby of the Cira Center near 30th Street Station.  Many think JG Domestic is a destination restaurant unless you live or work in University City, in the Cira Tower or are nearby at 30th Street Station, Drexel University or University of Pennsylvania.  I disagree, it is a short walk or cab ride from much of Center City.

We sit in the middle of the long end of the bar, there are only a couple of seats taken with lots of room.  Part of the long end of the bar faces the wall and the liquor but stretches into the lobby portion of the restaurant then angles around.  From where we were sitting in the middle, we had a partial view past the wall in front of us to the diners across the bar and through the restaurant into the lobby, a good comfortable spot. The longer portion of the bar has about 12 seats, 3 more on the end and about 3 additional on the other side before the wall started.  This unique shape is possible because of the architecture of the Cira Center, a very handsome, glass building.  The glass causes the lobby and the restaurant to be brightly lit throughout its expansive space with all the sunshine making for an excellent place to have lunch at the bar.

JG Domestic is a Jose Garces restaurant and the man is terrific, always known for wonderful food so we knew we were in for a treat.  I order the onion soup and the Muffaletta sandwich.  I ask before ordering if the sandwich is large, the very friendly and talkative bartender says it is quite large.  I order the soup and the sandwich anyway, deciding to take half of the sandwich  with me for a snack if it is too much.  The soup is great and the sandwich with Mortadella, La Quercia Prosciutto, Mozzarella, Black Olive and Pickled Vegetables is terrific as well. The sandwich is large as promised and half leaves with me to be enjoyed later. .

My two friends order a burger to split and a chopped salad to spit as well.  Very surprising since my friend can devour a very large burger in record time.  I ask him if he is sick  and claims no but I wonder.  The restaurant graciously splits the salad and burger for them making for quite the good lunch. Burger was cooked very nicely, pink in the middle, perfect for them. Salad was great as well.  We were told by some coworkers of my friends on their way out of the restaurant not to order the Friday special crab cake as they felt it was small, good if you are dieting.

As I said, many seats at the lobby side of the bar offer views through the front of the restaurant and into the lobby making you feel engaged with the activity around you while you eat.  Lots of open bar seats at this time of day. Seat have small backs. There is one television which is oddly mounted directly at eye level behind the bar showing ESPN.  While we were right near it, and since it was at eye level, we could see the TV quite clearly, I suspect if you are not close by, the television would be difficult to see.  Don’t go counting on catching a game or a show.

I highly recommend JG for a bar meal for the placement of the bar, the great food and the service.  The bartender was VERY friendly, talkative, engaging and interesting.  Sit more toward the lobby and you will get a better feel for the restaurant and the comings and goings of the people in the lobby and restaurant.

Learned something new.  One of my friends said brown napkins are used to keep white lint off of men’s and women’s dark suits.  Details like this make this place shine.  I will be coming back for another meal to check out the dinner bar experience.

BarTaste Rating  ★★★☆☆ 

JG Domestic
Cira Centre, Ground Floor
2929 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
JG Domestic Menu
Travel + Liesure JG Domestic Review

JG Domestic on Urbanspoon


  1. First off, I’m not mentioning the oobvius, like Independence Hall. I figure you’ve got those bases covered.Maps! Historical maps that show graphically how things change over time. Be sure to include examples from the neighborhoods , not just downtown. Photographs can be offered in a similar way. Imagine a presentation for each of the traditional shopping streets, places that everyone knows and that there are generations of photos for. Side-by-side photo and map of, say, K & A, every decade for 150 years. Or 52nd Street. 69th Street. Passyunk Avenue. Germantown Avenue. Now there’s a topic for ya: Germantown Avenue, that ran from the Delaware River all the way to Montgomery County, could tell the story of Philadelphia all by itself with its long and important history, diverse neighborhoods, beloved trolley lines.Old Movie and Legitimate Theaters and how they were woven into their communities.Railroads and Philadelphia. That could be an encyclopedia on its own.The Trolley Barons of Philadelphia. Which leads me to think of The Great Mansions, displaying the particular opulence of every period and the continuing movement of the suburbs as the city grew.And of course, influential individuals: Franklin, Rittenhouse, Wistar/Wister, Bartram, Widener, Stotesbury, Wanamaker, Strawbridge(s)Philadelphia, the manufacturing hub, which sprung from Mills in early Philadelphia.Philadelphia before and after various bridges. It’s easy to forget that all the bridges crossing our rivers weren’t always there. In fact, it wasn’t that long ago that ferries were an integral part of the transportation network (not to mention canals). And in many cases, when we built bridges, they were of record-setting size, at least for a while.An encyclopedia wouldn’t be complete without a long article about the 1854 Consolidation.World’s Fairs (the two we all know about) and the forgotten Expositions that we also hosted.Libraries, Societies, Institutes, Colleges, and Universities. We have a whole lotta learnin’ goin’ on here, and have had for hundreds of years.Street Names’ Histories. Incorporate the city’s existing list.Lists of great achievers, like Nobel Prize laureates, etc.Inventors and Industrialists (Besides Franklin). Atwater Kent, Eckert & Mauchley, Baldwin, Rittenhouse, Fulton, FarnsworthYou need to pick up where the Bulletin Almanac left off, providing an encyclopedic source for a lot of raw data. With voluminous hyperlinking wherever possible!As much history as possible of who lived here before the Europeans came should be included.Philadelphia as a publishing center.Weather history, like the Bulletin Almanac had.And that’s just off the top of my head!Congratulations for getting the project started, and good luck!