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Nodding Head Brewery and Restaurant

Not Rated.
Nodding Head Brewery and RestaurantNodding Head Brewery and Restaurant

Beer Stats:
Active Beers: 48
Beer Ratings: 460
Beer Avg: 3.77

Taps: / Bottles:
Cask: / Beer-to-Go: N
very good

141 Ratings
Ratings: 141
Reviews: 114
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 11.43%
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Eatery ]

1516 Sansom St.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19102
United States
phone: (215) 569-9525

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 141 | Reviews: 114 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of hudsonvalleyslim


4.75/5  rDev +23.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$

Stopped in the Nodding Head Brewery for some lunch and refreshment on my way up to Boston. First time in Philly. Very friendly place. Scotty the Irish bartender pulled me a pint of Grog, a mild brown which was quite drinkable. A good session brew as advertised. Next up was the DBA which was very tasty. A West Coast IPA, nice and hoppy. Had the delicious 'famous' crabcake, which was BUSTIN' with fresh crab, and was on my way.

Located upstairs on Sansom Street, small bar, good size restaurant. Bobble heads everywhere... 'scuse me, nodding heads. Recommended!

05-03-2005 12:56:25 | More by hudsonvalleyslim
Photo of bennybrew


3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$

i should preface this review by saying i didn't spend a dime in this place and got 3 beers and food (i did, of course, tip). get your boss to send you to a craft beer confrence. good things happen.

this place is off some street upstairs (i used to call my homebrewery: upstairs brewing co). cool (sorta little) bar and a bunch of spaces. i hesitate to call them seperate rooms especially as they are not really distinct rooms. there is a nice feel to the place. there are shiny tanks here and there too. never really figuired out what those were for.

they had several of thier own beers on and then one i had was good. read you some beer reviews.

they laid down a buffet for us and the food was good bar food and an interesting mix of stuff. i didn't see a proper menu.

04-24-2005 23:38:34 | More by bennybrew
Photo of francisweizen


4/5  rDev +3.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I had heard that this place and their beer kinda sucked. So when I actually made it out here for Londonporterfest 1.5, I was pleasantly pleased that it was actually a pretty damn nice joint. On Sansom street, very close to Monk's and Ludwigs, not too far from Tria either. This second floor establishment has a nice atmosphere. More restaurant than pub, with many sections full up of booths and tables, and a small bar serving some fine ales and lagers. The quality of the brews was very good. I had the BPA, which was actually better than the guest brews they had on tap (Elysian IPA, and Pizza Port Red). I also had a cask-pulled pint of Oatmeal Stout. Both were very tasty and fresh. The beer-list was much better than normal due to the conference that was going on in Philly. They had something like 8 or 9 beers on tap (bpa, 2 stouts, wee heavier, 3c, grog, spring ale, elysian ipa, and maybe a few more). Service was fast and friendly. Prices fair. The beers were not mind-blowing, but this place wasn't too packed on a Friday night either. I'd definately stop by for a meal and some seasonals the next time I am out crawling in the area. Cheers.

04-17-2005 16:30:18 | More by francisweizen
Photo of whartontallboy

New York

3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Nice atmosphere in Center City, big enough that you don't have to wait forever to get a table, and if you do, you can enjoy some appetizers and brews. The quality of the beers I've tried is sort of middling for craft brews, but better than most brewpubs I've hit up. The worst thing you can say about their beers is that they're sort of boring. Our waiter was extremely friendly and competent as a waiter, but he didn't know much about beer. I asked him how their chocolate stout compared to other chocolate stouts and he basically told me he didn't know. Then I asked what IPA their IPA compared to, and he didn't seem to know that either. Nice guy, just not really an expert on beer. They have 5-6 beers of varied styles on tap, although no lagers when I visited. The food was really tasty, especially the garlic-y sauce that came with the fries; it's a must-taste. Overall, a nice experience, not too expensive, and worth trying in center city.

02-19-2005 01:48:56 | More by whartontallboy
Photo of goindownsouth


3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Nestled in a place I never would have looked in order to find it, Nodding Head rests in the heart of center city Philadelphia. After taking the surprising long walk up the stairs to my destination, I found the environment to be basic, yet casual pub-like. Bobbleheads abound in glass casings. The brew list when I was there was impressive. While I only tried the Berliner Weisse and the Pale Ale, I was impressed with what they were doing there. Definately a place I would like to revisit and sample some of the good (looking) food...


01-12-2005 17:30:32 | More by goindownsouth
Photo of woodychandler


4/5  rDev +3.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

I always enjoy visiting Nodding Head when in Philly. I like the way that the bar opens up on yr left as you ascend the staircase to the second floor and the immediate, eye-catching presence of the glass case full of bobblehead dolls upon achieving the landing. The bar is of a gorgeous carved red wood, perhaps mahogany, perhaps cherry. They have instituted a new practice of having a live jazz trio/quartet on Sunday afternoons, which is really cool. If you go during the week, sit at the bar and ask for Spanky, especially if you are into rock & roll. Also, make sure that you take in the rest of the bobblehead collection and sit in one of the booths upholstered in red velvet. Finally, enjoy their beers, some of which I will review/mention separately.

07-12-2004 01:29:57 | More by woodychandler
Photo of blitheringidiot


2.6/5  rDev -32.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 2 | service: 3.5 | selection: 2

For so-ooo long, I was curious to review Nodding Head...eh.

There were only five beers on tap: Grog English Style Ale, 60 Shilling Scottish Amber Ale, Berlinger Weisse Summer Wheat, American Pale, and Monkey Knife Fight Tropical Ginger Beer.

Had the Monkey Knife and the BPA. $8.80 bill.

The bartender was friendly. Overly friendly, but not to a fault. This joint was Sam Adams Brewpub a while back. I hope that their beers improve upon my next visit. This is a small second floor place with one bathroom and a small restaurant seating area off to the side.

A bit of a gripe when each pint was $4.40 each. Overpriced for average beer? Maybe the rent is too high.

Last swigs:I will be back, but under "BA Protest." -wink- Big ups to all local breweries and brewpubs. I know I'm a little down on the joint, but their 3-C Hoppy IPA at the Iron Hill tasting rocked! Where was that???

*** Went back to Nodding Head on a Wednesday afternoon to give them a shot. They were getting ready for a beer dinner that night so they were a little distracted. The y had three beers on tap. A Scottish, a 700 Pale and Grog. Just overall lame and bland. I will not go back to Nodding Head unless I hear differently. ***

Beer is good. Happy brewpub beering.

07-08-2004 04:38:08 | More by blitheringidiot
Photo of stingo


4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Nodding Head proved to be a welcome surprise - the atmosphere is very laid back, somewhat dark, but not uninviting. The menu was somewhat typical bar fare (and inexpensive for Philadelphia), though the stand out to me was the charcuterie platter which features sausage, cheese, green apples, and spiced greens - a welcome alternative to the fried appetizers other places serve (and delicious too). Service was quick, friendly and accommodating, without being clingy or having an attitude. The brews however were very good - nearly all the ones sampled left my palate wanting more from the rich hoppiness of the pale ale (whose name escapes me at the moment) to the malty goodness of the Kung Fu Grip - there is something for every palate which can only be a good thing. Note: in the two times I have been there, the first time they had around 7 or 8 brews on tap but the last time had about half that number - but the quality of the smaller number was noticably higher.

07-01-2004 16:57:32 | More by stingo
Photo of aracauna


3.49/5  rDev -9.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5

This is a cool little bar. Pretty tiny, with a dining area behind the bar and a long narrow one at the back. You have to walk up some narrow stairs to get to the place. I was actually surprised to see bulky brewing equipment in the second story of a building. The bar area was packed for a Wednesday night and the clientele seemed to be 20-30 something professionals. The beer is ok, some better than others. Definitely worth a stop and it seems like a great place to hang out with friends. I'd go back for sure.

06-10-2004 04:23:45 | More by aracauna
Photo of maybrick


4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

After the Omegang Witte release at Monks I was treated to Nodding head for the very first time. It's changed since it was the Sam Adams Brew Pub - and for the better. The atmosphere is urban funky and features "Bobble head" dolls from many era's and many genres.

The brews were great. I sampled 3. I had the American Kolsch which was hopped up and a great nose. I also tried the Monkey knife fight - I should have had it first as the flavors are subtle - the bigger hopped brew took some of the taste away. I also had the Kung Fu grip Sctch ale at 9.5 abv. Quite good. The meal consisted of the strip steak sandwich. Very good had a gnerous amount of maytag bleu cheese and fried onions piled quite high. The plate came with a side salad of mixed greens with I beleive a mild vinegarette dressing. I for one will definitely be back soon!

05-05-2004 13:28:55 | More by maybrick
Nodding Head Brewery and Restaurant in Philadelphia, PA
87 out of 100 based on 141 ratings.