It would be understandable to think that the go-to place for Japanese food or groceries in Philadelphia was in the city’s Chinatown. The neighborhood is a melting pot of cultures. But, consider that New York City’s go-to Japanese marketplace is Mitsuwa Marketplace located across the Hudson River in Edgewater, New Jersey. It turns out that Philly’s Japanese hot spot is in Ardmore at Maido, a marketplace and a restaurant.
Truthfully, it wasn’t until I saw Maido’s tent at Philly’s Sakura Sunday that I even knew the shop existed. But I didn’t need much convincing after that to make a trip to Ardmore!
Maido (pronounced “My doe”) is situated on the corner of Lancaster Avenue in downtown Ardmore, just around the corner from the train station. Although Maido is new to me, it has been around for over a decade. The first store was opened in 2003 in Narberth by Seiko Dailey. Since then they have moved to the current, larger, location in Ardmore.
Maido the Restaurant
The restaurant side of the house is fairly casual and delivers good old fashioned Japanese comfort food. Diners order at the counter and employees bring the food out when it’s ready. You can’t get much simpler than that. There is also plenty of seating at the large counter or at surrounding tables.
The menu is fairly large and varied. Whether you are craving dumplings, noodles or tempura, they have it all. They also have lunch specials. On my recent visit I sampled the chicken teriyaki lunch special which includes a small salad and a bowl of udon. The smoky broth the noodles were in was absolutely delicious. I’ve got my eye on the miso soup with eggplant for my next visit. (And a slice of the matcha cheesecake, of course.)
Maido the Marketplace
Once your belly is full you can safely shop without feeling the need to buy everything in sight. Actually, you might feel that way regardless. Attached to the restaurant is the grocery section of the store. And, just as with the food, there is a variety of things on offer. Noodles, soups, snacks, soy sauces — you have your choice to select from. There are also frozen items and fresh produce. And, of course, there are plenty of Japanese sweets and candy to choose from. The Pocky selection alone was rather impressive.
In addition to food items, Maido also has cosmetics, cookware, and household items on offer. They even have used books in Japanese for sale.
Maido has a great friendly feel. Stop in for a meal and grab a few groceries while you’re there. I can’t wait to go back.
Maido, 5 E Lancaster Avenue, Ardmore, PA
This review is unsolicited. All photos are my own.