Once the industrial heart of brewing in the City of Brotherly Love, Brewerytown is reshaping itself into an innovative destination with eateries, nightlife, and specialty shops.
Brewerytown is a work in progress, but it may become Philadelphia’s next hip neighborhood. The area mainly consists of young renters, upper-level college students, and residents new to the area or Philly in general. A smattering of lifelong residents proudly call Brewerytown the perfect home because of its proximity to Center City and a western border with Fairmount Park. Aptly named because it once housed most of Philadelphia’s breweries in the 19th century, the area suffered from neglect through the 1970s and ’80s. The Brewerytown Historic District formed in 1991 and helped certify 380 neighborhood buildings on the National Register of Historic Places.
Today, new construction has built everything from condo communities to micro-neighborhoods with shopping and entertainment areas. Metered street parking is easy to find around the neighborhood. Hip mainstays like Brewerytown Beats record store and trending boutiques, restaurants, and bars fueled by independent entrepreneurs breathe life back into this once bustling area intersected by Girard Ave. From cat cafes to world cuisines, creative ideas with community awareness are filling the commercial spaces along Girard and select spots throughout Brewerytown.
All the Sammies at Brewerytown Bakery are vegan, including Lox of LOVE—homemade vegan lox with cream cheese, tomato, cucumber and herbs on a toasted bagel or Philly muffin. In fact, all the baked goods at this sweet spot not far from Fairmount Park are vegan. This includes fall seasonal items like maple walnut scones, apple spice muffins, and maple pumpkin cookie sandwiches. Brownie chunk cake and key lime cheesecake are popular menu additions.
2949 W Girard Ave
The Monkey & The Elephant
The mission at The Monkey & The Elephant coffee shop is a first in Philadelphia and seeks to employ and support former foster youth. The non-profit coffee shop supports young adults by providing personal and professional guidance while serving customers signature blend coffees from Lancaster-based roasters, Square One. The coffee menu offers the usual espresso drinks, flavored, cold, or hot. Food items are limited to paninis for breakfast and lunch, plus assorted baked goods and snacks.
2831 W Girard Ave
Blue Jay Restaurant
The Blue Jay is an old school eatery in Brewerytown. The restaurant is cash only, has a quintessential American diner feel, and specializes in breakfast. In fact, breakfast is served all day. The menu includes omelet platters, pancakes, and unique items like fried fish and eggs. Lunch consists of sandwiches, pasta, and salads plus a few entrees. The restaurant’s history is not common knowledge, but locals say it has been serving food for over 50 years.
2900 W Girard Ave
Spot Gourmet Burgers
Spot started as a food truck and customer demand necessitated a brick-and-mortar location, which owner Josh Kim found in Brewerytown. Kim has adopted the community as home and started a pay-it-forward campaign allowing him to provide food for local children in need. Spot burgers are 6 oz. patties of freshly ground sirloin. There are nine specialty burgers, like the SpOt Burger with hickory smoked bacon, sharp cheddar cheese, pickles, coleslaw, and signature sauce. French fries are fresh cut daily.
2821 W Girard Ave
Brewerytown Food Hall
A blend between colorful hangout spot and imaginative dinner destination, Brewerytown Food Hall offers an entertainment experience paired with food. Sports watch parties, extended happy hours, or hands-on activities like foosball and shuffleboard happen every evening. Menu items include spin offs from seven Philly restaurants. Burgers, pizza, and wings prep the late-night crowd for Grande Spritz 32-ounce cocktail pitchers. Live music plays on some weekends and three main bars make service easy in the 9,500 sq. ft. space.
1363 N 31st St
Siga Wot is a traditional Ethiopian stew with steak slow simmered in red peppers, onions, and spices. It is also a standout on the menu at Era. Owner Aki Senbeta created Era to blend traditional Ethiopian cuisine with craft beer and bring the community together over food and drink. Vegetarian options are available. The ambiance is of a corner bar. The bottle and draft lists feature classic lagers to Belgian dubbels, mass produced domestics to local ales.
2743 Poplar St
Service is quick and convenient at Rybrew, a combination sandwich stop, craft beer bottle shop, and neighborhood hangout. Open at 11:00 a.m., Rybrew brews Chestnut Hill Coffee Co. beans. Vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options are available for many of the sandwiches and salads. Rybrew has an extensive selection of beer, including low and no alcohol brands, for in-store consumption or take away. Locals gather for shuffleboard tournaments in the evening. Brewery theme nights provide beer tastings and swag giveaways.
2816 W Girard Ave
Crime and Punishment Brewing Company
With their slogan “bringing the brewery back to Brewerytown” Crime and Punishment Brewing Co. did exactly what it aimed for in 2015. The idea was to blend the tradition of local brewing with new techniques, with a side of international inspiration from the kitchen’s world-influenced dishes. Close to home, Crime and Punishment prides itself on community and partners with local organizations like Little League Baseball and local art events to promote Brewerytown. They tap a wide range of beer styles.
2711 W Girard Ave
Otto’s Taproom & Grille
Architect Otto Wolf designed many of Philadelphia’s breweries and the taproom at the corner of 29th and Flora St. pays homage to this part of Brewerytown history. The focus at Otto’s is on Pennsylvania-brewed beers with a spattering of hard-to-find international brews on tap, like Ayinger Celebrator and Chimay Red. Full-flavored beers complete the bottle and can list. Wines and spirits are available, too. A refined food menu offers starters, grilled skewers, sandwiches, and a handful of entrees.
1216 N 29th St