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Ludwig's Garten

Not Rated.
Ludwig's GartenLudwig's Garten

58 Ratings
Ratings: 58
Reviews: 58
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.93%
Taps: 0
Bottles: 0
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

1315 Sansom Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19107
United States
phone: (215) 985-1525
// CLOSED //

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(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 58 | Reviews: 58 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of nlmartin
3.09/5  rDev -27%

I must say I wasnt impressed with Ludwigs Garten overall. The bottled beer list was intially impressive; however, after trying to order about 6 different beers I ordered from the tap list. Dammit they are out of Victory Mad King Ludwig. I almost gave up at this point. I settled on a Frankinser Hefe on tap. Not to shabby. From here my wife and I had a few more on tap offerings. Not a bad place to get a pint. The room is a bit smokey but almost all the bars are smokey. The staff provided seeming indeferent service. Hell I guess your mileage may vary. The food didnt look particularly inviting. I will probably give it another try next time.

nlmartin, Jun 16, 2006
Photo of carlosd74
3.18/5  rDev -24.8%

I am know that I am in the minority but this place is so overhyped. Yes the atmosphere is better than your typical suburban Chili's but compared to otehr downtown haunts this place is not outstanding. The waitresses are nice enough and cool in their Eastern European way but I have never had great experiences with the bar staff. They are usually not very informed of the beers they are pouring. They do a good job of being attentive especially when busy with World Cup or Oktoberfest.
The biggest problem is with the overpriced and very average menu - both food and drink wise. You get better German food at otto's in Horsham, PA. The Old Blue Ox Brauhaus (or whatever it was) had more food selections and at better prices. I ordered wild boar and it tasted like sauerbraten...$30 sauerbraten!
Beer selection??? Please...I think people give these guys way too much credit for having the old German standards, macro Euro brews and a few interesting Belgian bottles.
So it is a great place to watch football and certainly worth a stop if you are in Center City East but not worth the #3 ranking!

carlosd74, Oct 25, 2006
Photo of gwong
3.23/5  rDev -23.6%

So I came here with a few other BAs in December as part of a Philly-area bar crawl excursion and I was extremely disappointed with the place. Right from the start, we spent quite a bit of time waiting to be seated at a table on a not so busy night - there were tables available but it took them a long time to bus and seat us.

After we were finally seated, we were presented with a menu with a fairly large selection of beers - awesome! In reality, however, our choice of beer kept getting shot down by our server as they were no longer available - not so awesome. Giving up with the menu, I mentioned a beer off one of the taps I saw while waiting to be seated. The server didn't seem to know what I was talking about so I had to physically show her the tap, only to be told that it wasn't actually available on tap. At this point, I gave up and had her recommend me a beer since she would know what was available.

The high point of the experience was the food - they certainly do know how to make good schnitzel.

gwong, Jan 04, 2008
Photo of Sammy
3.35/5  rDev -20.8%

My wife thought it was very homey, I thought it tacky, with plastic tablecloths and cigarette butts. Also I do not have the see so much flesh on middle aged women who themselves drink a lot of beer. Several taps, I think 15 operational, of a variety of German beers, some better rated than others, but mostly fair. Which I like, however the beer tasted old and overcarbonated. You would think this crowded place would have a lot of turnover in product. Also being middle aged people. Centrally located, allowing me to go to other places quickly.

Sammy, May 12, 2005
Photo of ascavuzzo
3.55/5  rDev -16.1%

I have been to Ludwigs several times over the past year since I first discovered it during New Years Day 2004. The Beer selection is very good. They carry a large variety, most are German. If you love German beers, this place is for you. I only had the food once and it was the night I proposed to my fiance, I figure we head over for dinner since we never ate there before. Bad idea! I ordered mussels as an appetizer and weiner schnitzel (veal cutlet) as an entre. The mussels were not good, I mean they literaly weren't good, they smelled and tasted rotten. We couldn't even eat them. I was hoping the veal cutlet would make up for it but it was nothing but bread crumbs on a piece of veal that was a nano meter thick, the meat was honestly no thicker then the credit card I used to pay for it. We did however enjoy our dunkels. If you like German beer, the place is a must, just eat before you go.

ascavuzzo, Feb 14, 2005
Photo of Jason
3.58/5  rDev -15.4%

A decent place to grab some German suds. Some what cheesy atmosphere and it seemed like the staff was not too much into it. I had one lightly stale beer out of the bunch but the rest seemed fresh. I thought it was odd to see Non-German brew on tap. It was awesome to see some German pilsners that I have never had yet as well as a doppelbock. The glassware varied which was nice ... there were many authentic glasses. Next visit I'd love to sit for dinner and get a better feel of the place cause the bar area was sort of blah.

Jason, Mar 28, 2005
Photo of RBorsato
3.7/5  rDev -12.5%

Visited on 09/26/06 for lunch and 10/10/06 in the late evening.

Attempt made to look like an old Euro/German beer bar/cafe. Split into 2 rooms - one for dining - one a bar. The bar side was maybe a bit to modern-ish ...

FIrst off, the beer: The fact that they don't have a beer menu is MOST annoying when they're sitting there asking what you want and you have to walk around looking at all the taps to see what they have. German beer selection actually leaves a bit to be desired in the fact that if you 've ever had more than 10 or 12 German beers then you've probably had most everything they have on tap. The beer list on the website is so far from accurate that it must be years old !! There was one Belgian tap that I didn't recognize and the bartender couldn't tell me what it was ... it was a Belgian Dark Strong Ale and I drank that most of the night ... pretty good - wish I knew what it was... :-(

Beer samplers were small considering the price... so you may as well stick with regular sized beers.

I had a tasty German dish (Spatzle) for lunch the day I ate there and it was quite good !

Not sure I'd rush back for the beer selection alone... but the food may intice me back there again.

RBorsato, Nov 13, 2006
Photo of StoutHearted
3.8/5  rDev -10.2%

I accidently found this place when I was staying at the hotel across the street a few years ago. I've been back a few times a year since, and the place is pretty consistant: Good German beer selection and excellent German food.

The atmosphere gives off the impression of a German hunting lodge, especially at the front bar. If you're in this room, look up towards the ceiling around the bar: there's a dried hop garland, a nice touch. Service at this bar usually takes a while; getting the bartender's attention has tried my patience. My last visit, it took about ten minutes before the bartender stopped talking to a coworker and came over to see what we wanted. To his credit, he was apologetic and checked up on us later. The front bar fills up at night with a young crowd and loud music plays (strangely not German, but 80's rock. The atmosphere almost begs for a polka, but that might chase the Chai-may crowd away.)

The back bar is usually a haven for the older crowd, and it's more quiet. I get better service here, so I prefer this area. It's the perfect place to relax with a pint and a bowl of potato salad, which is fantastic. I remember having a sausage dish here once- while its name escapes me, I haven't forgotten how delicious it was. Great place to go for dinner.

The beer selection is heaven for German beer fanatics, obviously. You may have to practice saying the name of what you want in your head several times before you order (What is it about Germans and their love of long words?). I discovered Rauchbier here, but they always have some sort of bock and a heifeweizen (Lemon-haters beware! Warn your bartender!). Nice bottle selection as well, which usually includes the aforementioned rauchbier.

Oh, and guys: The waitresses are dolled up like a St. Pauli Girl label. They bend over your table to put your beer down. Why aren't you there yet?

StoutHearted, May 30, 2006
Photo of Phatz
3.8/5  rDev -10.2%

Ludwigs was a cool enough place. Lots of classic old wood style decor but it didn't do much for me today. Maybe coming from Monks didn't help. I heard Ludwigs recently had an Oktoberfest party that was off the hook! But today was pretty dead. Still, the bartender was pleasant and she served the beer in propper glassware (they have an extensive collection of glassware I noticed around the room). And they had a number of German beers and others I never had before. So it was a decent place and well worth the stop but we didn't camp out here for long.

Hope this is helpful.

Phatz, Oct 01, 2006
Photo of ithacabaron
3.85/5  rDev -9%

Went here for dinner the other night with a friend.

As soon as we came in the door, a lovely young waitress in traditional dress came up, greeted us with a friendly "Gutentag!" (Is there such a thing? If so, her greeting was it), and showed us to our table. The majority of the place's seating area is comprised of hardwood booths with dried hop bines running along the top.

Our waitress was very enthusiastic to get our order -- and by that I mean that she handed us a beer menu that had 300 choices on it, and said, no less than 10 seconds later, "So, what would you like to drink?" Now, I appreciate this attention to serving the customer right away, and I'm sure lots of regulars come in and have the same thing each time. For me and my friend, however, we would have liked a few more minutes to look around. As it was, we asked her for a few minutes, and eventually settled on our choices.

Food and drink alike come in large proportions, with all beer at least a half liter, and the plates of sausage, red cabbage, and grilled pork overflowing. If you come hungry here, you certainly won't leave that way.

Selection was pretty good, with a very wide range of german offerings and styles represented. You'll find big-boy brewers and smaller producers as well, all well taken care of, and presented properly.

You're not going to find the multi-national gathering of beer that is Monk's here, but that's not what you came for, right? You came for good, honest, generous servings of German food and beer. At least I hope you did.

And, in the end, that's exactly what you'll find. No more, no less.

One suggestion: Oompah band. Because that would be awesome.

ithacabaron, May 16, 2005
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Ludwig's Garten in Philadelphia, PA
94 out of 100 based on 58 ratings.