Philly Loves Beer

If you frequent brew pubs, you probably drink beer year-round. But the entire town will be hoisting an icy mug, May 31 – June 9th, for the annual Philly Beer Week festival. Since it was established in 2008, this annual celebration was one of the nation’s largest beer events of its kind. While the event has dwindled throughout the years, Philly’s love for beer remains steadfast. This year, the event is back with an official kick-off party on May 31st at the Attic Brewing Company Beer Garden, 137 Berkley St, in Germantown.

The infamous “Hammer of Glory” will be traveling around the city to celebrate Philly beer while tasting rooms and breweries throughout the City offer beer-pairing dinners and brunches, homebrew competitions, discounts, and special events. The ten-day festival offers an opportunity to visit breweries outside of your neighborhood and maybe even organize a pub crawl (with a designated driver or an Uber.)

South Philly

When it comes to breweries, Solo agents and South Philly residents, Rebecca Nichols-Franqui and Alejandro (Alex) Franqui, take advantage of the walkability of their neighborhood to find a great beer. “We love the new Human-Robot tasting room at 12th & Morris,” said Rebecca. This ironically named pub is the Kensington craft beer makers’ fourth location. It has 10 taps and offers a glass full of foam, a Czech specialty. 

“We also love the casual but welcoming feel of Cartesian Brewing, 1326 E Passyunk,” said Rebecca. “If we want to get something to eat too, we go to Dock Street Brewing, 2118 Washington Ave. They get bonus points for being family-friendly and having fig jam pizza!” Her husband Alex adds, “Before we had kids, we’d go out of our way to go to breweries, but, these days, we mostly stick to breweries we can walk to.”

For those who enjoy their beer in the clouds, head to the Bok Bar, on the eighth floor of a former vocational school at 800 Mifflin St. During Beer Week and throughout June, they will be featuring the cuisine of Venezuelan restaurant Puyero, along with an intriguing selection of beers, wines, and cocktails. Come for brunch, happy hour, and a sunset Drag Show. Their beer list includes Dock St. Bohemian Pilsner, Victory Summer Love, and Golden Road Mango Cart.

The aptly named South House, 2535 S. 13th St., just north of Shunk Street, is a combo gastropub/sports bar with a diverse selection of craft beers, they offer an impressive brunch menu and claim to have “the largest gluten-free menu in the City,” along with burgers, impossible burgers and vegan and vegetarian options. Another perk? An outdoor seating area for those who like their beer without boisterous sports commentary.

Center City

On Friday, May 31st, 4-6 pm “Kick the Keg” launches Beer Week in Center City at Milkboy at 1100 Chestnut St.

Varga Bar, 10th & Spruce, takes to the streets for its Annual Beer Week Block Party, Sat. June 1st, 12-8 pm. The event will feature summer beers, live music, a pie-eating contest, a photo booth, and Barbecue foods.

Victory Brewing Company, 1771 Ben Franklin Pkwy, will be rockin’ in its outdoor, indoor, and rooftop eating areas with incredible views and flights of ales, lagers, and pilsners. 

Uptown Beer Garden, 1500 JFK Blvd., invites you to attend their “Sly Fox Can Run Derby,” featuring Sly Fox beer, Sat. June 1st, 1-5 pm. All home runs hit receive a raffle ticket to win tickets to the night game against the Cardinals. Go Phils! 

Northern Liberties

Triple Bottom Brewing, 915 Spring Garden Street, is that rare breed, a brewery with a social mission at its core. Besides brewing up tasty Lagers, IPAs, Pale Ales, and Seasonal Special Releases, they intentionally hire people who have overcome homelessness and incarceration via their nonprofit partners (Mural Arts, ProjectHome, Youth Sentencing, and Re-entering Project). So every beer you order, makes life better for the community as a whole. 

Yards Brewing Company, 500 Spring Garden Street, promises to be one of the biggest venues celebrating Beer Week with seating for 300. The State’s first wind-powered brewery has grown from a small space in Manayunk to a 38,000-square-foot beer hall. Known for Philadelphia Pale Ale and Brawler, both nationally recognized ales, they serve a variety of “flights” as well as Brunch and  ‘beer-friendly” food, including the infamous Schwar-Burger, topped with smoked chili, bacon, an onion ring, and barbecue sauce.


Urban Village Brewing Company, 1001 N. 2nd St., takes it beer and food seriously. What other brew pub offers Truffle Fries, Wood-Fired Pizza with Pistachio Pesto, Roasted Beet Salad, or a menu for tiny tykes? Which is not to slight their IPAs, Lagers, or Pilsners.

Kraftwork Bar, 541 E. Girard Ave., is that unique pub where Guinness is on tap, along with Yard’s Gold and a nice assortment of Philly-brewed IPAs. Their menu features a Fishtown Fried Chicken Sandwich, to be eaten at your own risk with your cardiologist on speed dial. Yes, they have salads and lighter fare.

Get Outta Town

Since Beer Week falls at the start of summer, all the more reason to take a road trip to Sly Fox Brewing Company 520 Kimberton Rd. in Phoenixville, one of the oldest brewpubs in the Delaware Valley. At their Pottstown brewery, they make a nationally acclaimed Irish-style Stout, Bavarian-style wheat beer, and IPAs which are served at their six pubs throughout the State. This is where Sweet Potato Fries come by the bucket, along with a hearty menu for adults and kids.

Want to get a jump on Philly Beer Week? Buy tickets for Beer Fest Philly, a one-day event on May 28th at the 23rd Street Armory. This 21+ event (not affiliated with Philly Beer Week) features beer tastings and food for sale. Afternoon and evening tickets are still available.

For more information on Philly Beer Week events visit phillylovesbeer.com. More events will be added as tasting rooms and breweries finalize their schedules.

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