Brewery ARS Sets Opening Date

brewery-ars-400The eagerly awaited brewery from twin brothers Sean and Andrew Arsenault has set an opening date. Brewery ARS will open on West Passyunk Avenue on Saturday, December 17th with four beers scheduled to be on tap.

The 10-barrel brewery and tasting room is at 1927-29 West Passyunk Avenue, between 19th and 20th Streets. The brewery, which has been under development for a year will be pouring four beers at its opening. For those who have been lucky enough to try them along the way, the brewery is a highly anticipated opening.

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Brewery ARS Lands on West Passyunk

The brothers

The brothers, Sean and Andrew Arsenault

After a year long search, twin brothers Sean and Andrew Arsenault have locked down a home for their Brewery ARS. The brothers, who are both engineers by day (Andrew, an environmental engineer used to work for Victory Brewing), just got the keys for 1927-1929 West Passyunk Avenue. The old double-wide garage will be transformed into a 10 barrel, 1,600 square foot brewery and tasting room.

The brothers are now diving deep into paperwork for state and federal brewing licensing plus the paperwork to convert the old garage into a brand new brewery.

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This Saturday: South Philly SausageFest

south-philly-sausagefest-400This Saturday, September 12th the first ever South Philly SausageFest will be held on West Passyunk Avenue between Broad and 15th Streets. The event benefits the Newbold Community Development Corporation’s Street Cleaning Program.

The event will feature seven nearby restaurants, each doing their own take on a sausage. That means everything from Kielbasy-on-a-stick to Indian veggie sausage. Six local brewers will also be onhand to showcase their best fall beers.

Live music will also be on hand, featuring local bands like Swift Technique, the Whips, Callowhill, and Taylor Ash.

The event is kid friendly too with a free Kidzone a face painter.

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Tale of the Tape: Cheesesteak at Philip’s Steaks


Philip’s Steaks is the hipster rock answer to where to get the best cheesesteak on Passyunk Avenue. But that doesn’t mean it is the wrong answer. Far from the neon of 9th and Passyunk, Phil’s, as those in-the-know call it, is a 24-hour stand at 23rd Passyunk. Easily accessible to homesick travelers returning through Philadelphia International Airport, as well as shift workers, locals and in-the-know sports fans heading to or from the sports complex, Phil’s always has customers, despite its off-the-strip location.

Philip’s offers the standard cheesesteak options and the “Old Fashioned” or “Old Fashion” as the sign says, a steak that GQ’s Alan Richman highly praised when he was naming his best cheesesteaks in Philadelphia.

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Most Affordable ’Hoods for Renters: Yup, They’re What You’d Think

Screen grab from Kwelia's interactive rental heat map.

Screen grab from Kwelia’s interactive rental heat map.

Here’s what we want to say to startup Kwelia: If loving you is wrong, we don’t wanna be right. The self-professed data geeks help real estate professionals by collecting and analyzing information about the rental market: what’s hot, what’s trending, what competitive pricing would look like.

That doesn’t necessarily sound like it would be to a consumer’s benefit. But Kwelia also provides info about Philadelphia rentals and free tools to regular folk. Take, for instance, the company’s interactive heat map of rental prices in Philadelphia for the month of May: It’s a really helpful look at what’s going on in the city in terms of affordability–as long as you understand the reasons behind the prices.

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Where We’re Eating: Gennaro’s Tomato Pies


Mike Giammarino—who operated Philly’s Lombardi’s pizzeria on 18th Street before that location succumbed to 10 Rittenhouse and, eventually, Serafina—is back, baking New York-style pizza in Philadelphia, where he belongs. Giammarino has opened Gennaro’s Tomato Pie just off West Passyunk Avenue, and despite the fact that it debuted just after New Year’s, the place already feels like it’s been here for decades. The World War II model planes and 1940s-era posters and advertisements certainly help, but somehow even the tattooed servers fit right in.

Though the pizza is available for takeout (no delivery), these pies are meant to be eaten right where they’re made—inside the 34-seat pizzeria, while the mozzarella is still melting, the chunky, herb-filled tomato sauce is still dangerously hot, and the snappy well-done crust can still stand up to the toppings without a hint of floppiness. If you can’t decide which kind to get (though really, there are no wrong choices), the pleasant staff will offer the option of divvying pies up by halves. But that politeness aside, this remains pizza worthy of being called New York-style.

Gennaro’s Tomato Pie
1429 Jackson Street

First appeared in the June, 2013 issue of Philadelphia magazine.

Cousin’s Grubhouse Opens on West Passyunk


Longtime friends, William Schmidt and Jim Lord have taken over Cousin’s Luncheonette on West Passyunk and rechristened the spot, Cousin’s Grubhouse. Located between 22d and 23rd Streets (opposite Philip’s Steaks), Cousin’s has been a fixture at the corner of Passyunk and Hemberger since 1955. Serving up breakfast and lunch to a wide variety of regulars, Schmidt, who owned Players Pub and Black Door back in the day has cleaned up the spot and installed a new menu with the help of Lord. Lord is very attached to the wise idea, that just about anything can be made better by using bacon or a deep fryer (even better if it is both), and is pushing the menu beyond that of the traditional greasy spoon.

What we ate last week »