Farmers’ Cabinet Reopening With Full Bar On Thursday, Says Matt Swartz [UPDATED]


It has been a few weeks since Farmers’ Cabinet owner Matt Swartz was arrested and charged with forgery and selling alcohol without a valid liquor license. And by December 30th, the restaurant announced that it was closing, at least temporarily. But now, the Farmers’ Cabinet is reopening on Thursday, according to Matt Swartz.

“Farmers cabinet will reopen at 5pm tomorrow with full bar,” wrote Swartz in an email to me just after 7 p.m. on Wednesday. And the restaurant announced the same on its Facebook page.

That the restaurant would be allowed to reopen with a full bar seems a little weird, since the Farmers’ Cabinet liquor license is still showing as “inactive” in the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s licensee database, and, you know, since one of the restaurant’s owners (Swartz) has been charged with forging a liquor license, etc.

But, hey, this is America. Anything is possible.

God bless ’em.

Swartz is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on January 16th in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court. The PLCB could not immediately be reached for comment.

UPDATE: On Thursday morning, a PLCB spokesperson explained: “The licensee went to our Plymouth Meeting Office right before 5:00 last night and filed the validation form, taxes and fees so authority was issued.” It’s worth noting that Swartz is not named on the liquor license, or the situation could be very different.

So, Philly bars, take note: You can fail to pay your taxes, fail to renew your liquor license, sell alcohol with an inactive liquor license, and one of your owners can even be arrested and charged with forging a document relating to your liquor license, and all it takes is a 30 minute ride out to Plymouth Meeting to set things straight. Good to know.

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  • Fizz

    The PLCB is most likely, as they often do, giving a temporary liquor license until logistics finish being worked out as I’m assuming there are many hurdles after last month.

    However, thrilled to hear about the reopening. Regardless of Phillymag’s not so subtle war with the place it’s one of my favorite bars in the city. And I know those of us who are looking for a good drink and experience and not a small business to support and feel good about ourselves feel the same way.

  • 10kGiraffe

    Didn’t you guys just post this article less than a week ago: “”

    With the tag line: “Foobooz: In A Surprise To No One, Farmers’ Cabinet Is Done”

    Instead of talking about how awful Swartz is (wow, have we played that one out) why don’t we talk about how ridiculous Phillymag/Foobooz is for posting 5 Farmers Cabinet articles relating to this liquor license issue in the last 3 weeks, the last of which was insinuating the restaurant/bar was closing permanently. It would seem no matter how many times you predict their failure, they’re still around.

    At this point, when they finally do close and you say “I told you so!” it’s not quite, as you’ve been saying it for years and it’s inevitable given the restaurant industry to happen eventually.

    Keep on tryin guys, you’ll get ’em eventually!

    • JA

      It sounds like you’re describing the nature of a cockroach(es)!

      “”It would seem no matter how many times you predict their failure, they’re still around.””

    • duh

      You don’t realize that by continuing to click on articles like this and posting comments, you’re only encouraging more of the same? These articles have been popular, and web traffic trumps all. Welcome to 2014…

  • Booze Crooze

    I couldn’t care less what the proprietor does, he’s going to jail hands down, so rage on Farmers Cabinet! You guys rock!

  • Phillylaw

    …..not sure how it is phillymags fault that a bar owner broke two laws. Seems the liquor license and forgery laws of the state are fairly clearcut. And phillymag is ……supposed to write about philly things. So how are they supposed to …..not write? No matter how good a bar is, the owner committed forgery and served liquor without a license, whether phillymag writes about it a lot, or not.

    • LoveBeerHateDrama

      The owner, in this case, is a convicted felon. Therefore he is the face of this matter. However it is not his liquor license, as he is unable to retain one, as a felon. It is quite possible that a convicted felon own a lcb licensed business as long as they have a partner without a federal criminal record. This partner owns the license. Look for yourself, it is public.

  • Barstool Sample

    Just eat some crow already Victor. Your vigilante vendetta for Matt Swartz is so transparent, and your “articles” will never kill Farmer’s Cabinet. The only person that can take down the Cab is Swartz himself. And try as he may to do so, even he is having trouble burying it. Do you know why? Because he has an extremely experienced and disciplined staff that puts out an amazing product. And because of that, people go there. And they will continue to go there.

    So Victor. Isn’t it about time you just wave that little old white flag and give up already?

    • no

      “The only person that can take down the Cab is Swartz himself.”

      So, do you have any plans on doing that, then, or will it only occur once you are behind bars?

      Metal ones, not boozy ones.

      • Barstool Sample

        I love how when ANYBODY posts a positive thing about Farmer’s Cabinet, or comes to the restaurant’s defense, they are automatically pegged to be Matt Swartz. Get a little imagination people, and come up with something better!

        • FullOfStool

          You can’t be serious. It took me one click on your “Barstool Sample” handle to look at your comments history and find that you only comment on Swartz-related articles. If you really aren’t Swartz himself, you’re doing a great impersonation…

          • Not Swartz

            Err, I myself have only ever commented on phillymag and foobooz articles related to Fcab, in fact, that’s usually 90% of the time I’m ever on Phillymag. Although I always do it under a guest so I can’t prove that. It’s called employees, defending their place of employment. If you don’t believe it stop into Fcab this weekend and see that all the same staff still work there. Which we wouldn’t if we weren’t getting paid and hated our job so much.

          • PizzOff Bee-otch

            Bar stool is DEFINITELY not Matt. I’ve seen Matt’s penmanship, and its at the level of a 3rd grader.

        • Earl J

          Thanks Matt

  • phillybar

    Various bars throughout the city operate at various times with no license. Plus numerous after hours speakeasys

    • no

      You’re right! Because someone gets away with a crime, EVERYONE should get away with a crime! Great idea!

      Care to name any of these alleged bars and their locations, BTW? Maybe I’ll report them myself, if I’m not too busy today.

  • Shut It

    I think i might go, just to see the place get raided

  • Jay V Of Considerable Influenc

    This guy is harder to kill than a roach.

  • Come on.

    God the Foobooz team must be miserable right now. I go to a bar/restaurant to get drunk and eat food – to enjoy myself – not to worry myself with whatever scandal is happening behind the scenes.

    With your attitudes towards business I hope all of you nay-sayers never shop at Walmart. You want something to grit your teeth about, some articles to comment on, something to get worked up about and write articles about – Walmart.

    Walmarts’ treatment of workers, their business practices, their countless examples of morally corrupt behavior that affect thousands of employees and are further exploited by millions of consumers, THAT is something to get worked up about. This is a bar. In Philadelphia. Pick your battles my friends, this is clearly a personal war – not something about right versus wrong.

    • Mart Wall

      The Philadelphia food blog should really investigate the employee practices at Walmart. Seems legit.

      • Marcus

        Uhh – I think they were insinuating the people commenting on the articles, not phillymag. Seemed that way to me.

    • jack

      Colleen and Matt….How are you living in a 4.75 million dollar home.?????????
      How do you drive a BMW, Hummer, ect? I can assure you, you are not making that kind of money from a bar. Especially the way you run it. You bot are a STORY to folllow. A true criminal story. Can’t wait to see you on American Greed soeday……..when they interview you both in orange. And we both know collleen,… is NOT your color!

  • ejk

    The way the article is written sounds like Victor Fiorillo really is upset about this? Why so sad Victor?

  • Barstool Sample

    So no follow up article about how Farmer’s Cabinet beat the odds, and successfully relaunched the amazingness that FCab last evening, despite all of your negative steps to entirely tarnish the good name of every employee in the establishment?

    Why can’t you just bite the bullet Victor and write about the good with the bad? Or does your bias prevent this?

    • Wait

      Let’s wait for Swartz’s court date to pass before we plan the parade. Isn’t he on probation?

      • f matt and collen

        He also just had and DUI several months ago

  • jack

    Well looks like all of the charges will stick except one. Finally the law is catching up with you Swartz. Colleen, hopefully you will be next. Stayed tuned Feb 6, 2014 will be the formal arraingment. lets cross our fingers.

    • Jack

      Looks like these charges will stick Matt:) Looking forward to your pre-trial conference on March 6. Colleen, how are you going to upkeep that 4.75 million dollar home all by yourself? oh, I’m sure you will have moved by then. Does your current landlord really know who you are? Or is this another lease to purchase BS?? Gotta love Karma!

  • Seth Hatch

    I worked for that place for a VERY short time (bout a month). The owner is a reprehensible businessman. When I had worked there (summer of ’12) I was told by kitchen staff and other staff that the place had been thru some 10 chefs in a calendar year because Swartz bounced payroll checks to them and he even had kegs yanked out of the beer room for not paying the distributor. He was accused of bootlegging for simply driving kegs up from their brewery in VA. I didnt leave because of him, but the negative attitude everybody seemed to have while working there. There would be 2/3 servers who they took care of bit for the most part, the FOH staff was a revolving door of unhappy people.

    Amazing this guy is allowed to run a business.