Philadelphia’s Best Bars

Our 85 favorite places to start a tab

CRAFT BEER

Silk City
There are those among us who would sooner die than drink inside Silk City, but we love sitting out in the beer garden. It’s always a friendly mix of people, and good for large groups.

Triumph Brewing Company
The brunch stout is like drinking a small fishbowl of warm French toast.

Victory Brewing Company
A serious beer drinker living too close to Victory Brewing Company’s bar is like David Duchovny living down the street from a whorehouse: fun, sure, but it’s not going to lead to anything good.


Belgian Cafe
Everyone loves the beer and mussels at Monk’s, but the Belgian has the advantage of being just as good and only half as crowded.

The Pineville Tavern
The place was built in 1742, and it still feels like if you squint just right, you can see Ben Franklin and George Washington hoisting tankards in the corner—only without all the cheesy Disney World fakeness of drinking at City Tavern.

McKenzie Brew House
A microbrewery and restaurant for Malvern beer snobs and burger-seekers.

Monk’s Cafe
Because when that bus drove through it last year, our first worry was actually the beer collection.

Good Dog
It’s mostly a hipster gathering place these days, but the beers are still great, the menu is killer, and if you time it just right, you can have the entire third floor to yourself.

Standard Tap
As good for draft beers on Saturday night as it is for brunch on Sunday morning. If they put out cots, some of us would just live here on the weekends.

Dock Street Brewing Company
If you’re a fan of Dock Street’s brews (and we are), you can’t get any closer to the source than this. Obviously, you’re coming for the beer, but the menu is surprisingly good, too.

Grace Tavern
With a great beer list and a full menu served till 2 a.m. (which means frites and sausages right up until last call), Grace is the neighborhood bar you wish was in your neighborhood. It might also be the only place in town that makes us excited to eat green beans.

Brauhaus Schmitz
Where else, Renaissance Faires aside, can you order an authentic German beer served in a massive stein and brought to you by waitresses in St. Pauli Girl outfits?

To read about the city's best gastropubs, click here.

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  • heavy

    you can’t have a list of the best bars in philadelphia withouth mcgillins ale house. one of the best bars in town and a philadelphia legend.

  • Joe

    Where’s Perch Pub? Wake up Philadelphia Magazine. All brown everything.

  • Gloria

    What no Capital Grille in Philadelphia! One of the best bars and bartenders (my son-in law especially) in the city.
    Gloria

  • Rachel

    I can give you 150 reasons why McGillin’s should have been on your list of best bars!

  • B

    McGillin’s. End of comment.

  • j

    this list is garbage. mcgillins is one of the best bars on the east coast, let alone philly.

  • Jodi

    I’m from Seattle, and I send anyone I know coming to Philadelphia to the Franklin. Best bar in your city.

  • Travis

    The fact that I live 10 steps from the Pickering Creek Inn and have gone exactly 1 time and live over an hour from McGillin’s, through traffic-invested 76 and Center City, and have gone over 100 should tell you everything you need to know about this list. It is a complete and utter joke.

  • Ken

    Btw, Sweeney’s does have a website if you want to fix that on your Neighborhood Haunts page –

    http://www.sweeneyssaloon.net/

  • accky

    i know the girl who gave the tria quote. shes a boozehound. she thought i was a jerk but turns out she was the one that did the jerking (in the bathroom nonetheless). whoot whoot.

  • Nope

    Ha, no McGillans!?! How do you take yourselves seriously? Your online editors just wasted their time writing this article

  • Jim

    Although this list isn’t perfect, everybody relax about McGillin’s. It’s not a list of Philadelphia’s 85 oldest bars, or it’s most obvious bars.

  • Bill

    This list loses all of the respect it gains for putting Franks and Cocos on here when it names Fox and the Hound as one of the best bars in the city.

  • Rosie

    uhhhh, what about misconduct tavern? this list is s#*%!

  • stew

    I don’t understand how you can write an article about best gastro pubs and not have a good understanding of what a gastro pub is. It is a bar with Chef-driven comfort food in a casual setting usually including interesting cocktails and thoughtful beer and wine selections. It seems this list was put together randomly and without focus. Half of the selections do not meet the criteria – Fox and Hound? I was hoping to learn something from this, now I just want my 5 minutes back.

  • Harvey

    I have looked at various lists like this over the past week. I only have one question, did eulogy close or something?

  • Robert W.

    I’m saving this years’ Nov. issue to see whether
    my suggestions make it to next years list. Two
    good places, (one in N.E. Philly and the other
    in Feasterville) are Dagwoods Pub located at
    Torresdale & Linden Aves. and the other is The
    Copper Kettle at Bristol & Bridgewater Town Rds.
    They are both reasonably priced with a full menu and friendly atmosphere.

  • Robert W.

    I’m saving this years’ Nov. issue to see whether
    my suggestions make it to next years list. Two
    good places, (one in N.E. Philly and the other
    in Feasterville) are Dagwoods Pub located at
    Torresdale & Linden Aves. and the other is The
    Copper Kettle at Bristol & Bridgewater Town Rds.
    They are both reasonably priced with a full menu and friendly atmosphere.

  • River

    It’s incredible that you neglected to include Kraftwork Bar in Fishtown. It could easily have fit under neighborhood bar, craft brews or gastropub, but you missed it altogether! A beautiful space with two dozen beers on tap & delicious, reasonable food.

  • Gandhus

    Lists like this are usually a little silly as are many of the descriptions, but so are a lot of the comments. A rash of McGillin’s lovers and few other jokers. Sweeney’s? Dagwood’s? Kopper Kettle? (Yes, with a ‘K’) Come on, get serious. I do however, agree with the last comment about Kraftwork.