James Opens at 19th and Arch

Check out the cocktails and menus for James | Photo by HughE Dillon

Check out the cocktails and menus for James | Photo by HughE Dillon

James, the bar and restaurant owned by the same group as behind Mac’s Tavern in Old City, though this is a very different concept, opens today. Named after James Logan of Logan Circle fame and a former mayor of Philadelphia, James takes over the former Mission Grill location with 88 seats and 28 bar stools.

Aiming to have something for everyone, James houses private dining rooms in the back as well as in a vault, that speaks to the building’s former use as a bank. Though televisions dot the bar area, they double as mirrors when they’re not broadcasting sports, making the space more versatile.

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Ground to Glass: A Cocktail Class at the Reading Terminal

Cocktails with local herbs and produce at Reading Terminal Market

Cocktails with local herbs and produce at Reading Terminal Market

On Thursday, August 25th, Aaron Gordon, owner of 13th Street Cocktails, his company sets up bars at weddings, catered events, tastings and even offers a bar on wheels, and now he’s going to host a cocktail class at the Reading Terminal Market on how to make drinks using herbs and produce from your garden or local market.

Each participant gets their own mixing station and light bites will be served to go with the drinks.

The class runs from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and costs $60 per person. Each guest will receive a hand juicer and recipe guide, in addition to the cocktails created.

13th Street Cocktails [Official]
Ground to Glass: Interactive Cocktails with 13th Street Cocktail Catering
[TicketLeap]

Cocktails to Cool Off with at a.bar

a-bar-angostura-float-400Earlier today we stopped by a.bar to check in on the summer cocktails that the Rittenhouse cocktail bar has added to their menu. Bartender Paul MacDonald joined us on Facebook Live to make us an Angostura Float, a rum-based cocktail made with Angostura bitters ice cream that is just perfect for this unbearable hot days and nights.

The cocktail is definitely rum forward in the best way and as the ice cream melts, becomes a creamy cooling and refreshing way to relax. The angostura ice cream worked remarkably well, definitely better than just about any beer-flavored ice cream I’ve come across.

More summer cocktails at a.bar »

The DNC Drink-cision Is Upon Us

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Martini or Martinez

Tired of all the political talk? Here’s an election with two candidates that are a little easier to swallow.

Philadelphia Distilling is is the official gin provider of the 2016 Philadelphia Host Committee for the Democratic National Convention with their Bluecoat Gin. And in the spirit of the convention, they are hosting their own election between two drinks the “Martini” and the “Martinez.”

The “Martini” is the classic martini made with their American Dry Gin and is garnished with an orange twist or olive.

The “Martinez” is made with the Philadelphia Distilling’s Barrel Finished Gin, vermouth, bitters, luxardo, and finished with an orange twist.

The two drinks can be put to the test all over the city including some Foobooz favorites like Oyster House, Industry, Vedge, and a.bar (just to name a few).

To vote, head to the Bluecoat Gin Facebook page Drink-cision post and comment the hashtag of your favorite. Voting is open and will run until July 28th. The winner will be announced on Thursday, July 28th at 10 p.m. at The Franklin Bar.

Full List of participating bars »

Morgan’s Pier Is Hosting Distillery Tours

Spirit+Tour+Poster+REvLike us, Morgan’s Pier is enjoying visiting local distilleries this summer. The riverfront bar is offering tours of Stateside Vodka and Red Brick Craft Distillery. The tours start out at Morgan’s Pier with light snacks and a specialty cocktail made with spirits from the distilleries. Then everyone gets on a trolley bus and learns how those drinks came to be. Each distillery offers an exclusive tour and tasting to the guests.

After the two stops, the trolley heads back to Morgan’s Pier for a nightcap. The tours cost $35 and there are two more this summer, Tuesday, August 16th and Tuesday, September 14th. The events start at 5:30 p.m. at Morgan’s Pier, with the trolley leaving at 6 p.m.

Purchase your tickets online.

Morgan’s Pier [Foobooz]

Cocktail Dinner at Russet BYOB

sara justice 400

Sara Justice at COOK

A cocktail dinner at a BYOB? Yep, that’s what’s happening on Tuesdays in July at Russet. Today, July 19th, sees The Franklin’s Sara Justice creating two cocktails to go with chef Andrew Wood’s four course tasting menu.

Justice is shaking up two cocktails for tonight’s dinner:

  • Violent Femme Punch – with tequila, Fino sherry, falernum, ginger, pineapple, lemon, beet and cilantro
  • The Woman in the Dunes – with gin, scotch, fino sherry, orgeat, lemon, lime and bitters

Tickets for the dinner are $65 per person (plus gratuity). Guests may call 215-546-1521 to reserve a space.

If you can’t make it tonight, you will have one last chance to attend a Tuesday Night Cocktail Dinner. Chris Arnone from Zahav will be making cocktails on Tuesday, July 26.

Russet [Foobooz]

Speakeasy Style Bar Opens in Doylestown

The Still Mule 400

A Mechanic Street Mule at the Still in Doylestown

Out in Bucks County, just above the Doylestown Brewing Co. (52 East State Street, Doylestown), a speakeasy has been operating almost unnoticed for almost a month.

Run by Chris Hall, The Still is self-proclaimed Prohibition-style cocktail bar that is apparently still a pretty well kept secret.

The bar only uses spirits from local PA distilleries and have nine homemade infusions made with all local ingredients. The cocktail list covers the basics and includes some historically accurate drinks as well (which come with a lengthy explanation of their origins).

And while it’s no Hop Sing, this is definitely a cool addition to ‘burbs.

The Still is open Thursday through Saturday from 4 p.m. to midnight.

The Still Menu (PDF)

Sneak Peek at Nicholas Elmi’s Bar, ITV

Top Chef winner Nicholas Elmi opens ITV next to his Laurel on East Passyunk.

Top Chef winner Nicholas Elmi opens ITV next to his Laurel on East Passyunk.

ITV, the bar from Laurel’s Nicholas Elmi officially opens this Saturday, July 2nd at 1615 East Passyunk Avenue. Elmi has been planning the bar next to his restaurant Laurel, for more than a year. The name ITV comes from “In the Valley” which is what the Lenape word Passyunk means.

The dark and attractive marble bar seats around 12 at leather bar stools. The backbar and walls are off-black with gold gold piping. The design, done by Eimer Design also includes floral wallpaper made of thinly rolled wood. Beyond the bar is a banquette with seating for eight plus a lone table for two.

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Where to Find the Best Cocktails During Center City Sips

center city sips 4002 Gingers Irish Whiskey is an official sponsor of Center City Sips and you can find the blended, slightly sweet whiskey at just about every bar and restaurant participating in all-over-Center-City Wednesday night happy hour. Most spots are pouring a Big Ginger, a whiskey and ginger ale that is certainly less offensive than some other flavored vodka concoctions whipped up in past years. But our crack staff or researchers are looking beyond the 2 Gingers drinks and at other cocktails that are worth $5.

Here are some of the cocktails that stand out »

La Colombe Adds Weekend Night Menu

Hummus with wood-fired pita bread

Hummus with wood-fired pita bread

Starting this Friday, La Colombe’s Fishtown flagship is kicking off a night menu of pizzas, hummus and a selection of desserts. The menu takes full advantage of the cafe’s baking operation and wood-fired oven. The pita, made by head baker John McGrath is finished in the wood-fired oven and makes a perfect vehicle for scooping up the hummus and accompanying pickled vegetables.

There is no such thing as too many good pizza options and on weekends, La Colombe will now offer its own Neapolitan pizzas. In addition to a 10″ Margherita pizza, there will be rotating red and white pies.

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