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Khyber Pass Pub

Not Rated.
Khyber Pass PubKhyber Pass Pub
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

61 Ratings
Ratings: 61
Reviews: 33
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 9%
Taps: 22
Bottles: 71
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Bar, Eatery ]

56 S 2nd St
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106-2810
United States
phone: (215) 238-5888

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @khyberpasspub

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: NeroFiddled)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 61 | Reviews: 33 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Rifugium
2.71/5  rDev -34.1%

They've ruined the Khyber.

Yes, they now specialize in serving craft beer and microbrews, but they used to do that anyway. Now they serve food. Ok fine. The Khyber used to be a great small venue for underground music acts, and now there aren't live shows anymore. They now focus on being a beer bar, but #1 - again, they already served a fine amount of local brews, and #2 - Eulogy is right across the street, as is Triumph and the Croc Bar, with the Irish Pol not too far away. Do we REALLY need another competing bar right in Olde City? I do not approve.

Rifugium, May 04, 2011
Photo of gdfan47
3.41/5  rDev -17%

go to this place if you really wanna see a band there

located in olde city parking is rough....

it is also half a block from eulogy and triumph... so ... there are other places to go

the bartenders are usually friendly, they have an older hipster door guy who is flat out rude

the beer selection is pretty good, have some really cool domestics on draft , stuff like allagash, dfh, yards.. the draft list changes alot and they have a small bottle list

the grimiest batrhoom will you will find in the city
the rest of the bar feels like it hasnt been swept or cleaned since Rico Suave was tearing up the charts..

its one of the cheaper places to drink ,you can get pbr for dirt cheap

but its just really hard to go here with such other great beer bars less than a block away

gdfan47, Dec 07, 2008
Photo of corby112
3.49/5  rDev -15.1%

This one of my favorite places to drink in the douchey section of Olde City. Usually the bars here are rope off with jocks waiting in line for half a block to get in. On one hand this place is cool because it's laid back, they serve a very good variety of local craft, and awesome indie music, especially live acts but on the other hand it's often filled with pretentious asshole hipsters who only drink PBR.

The service is the same as any other small bar/club that has live acts. This means that there is no interaction, just them serving the next person waving a bill in front of them. They are usually quick to fill your glass but not over friendly, talkative or knowledgeable.

The selection isn't really that great either. They have PBR for the hipsters as well as a decent selection of regional craft that you can get anywhere else.

This is a really cool place to see shows and probably the best place in Old City for beer, except Eulogy. Go for the music and enjoy some decent craft while there.

corby112, Oct 16, 2009
Photo of Robjvoorhees
3.5/5  rDev -14.8%

Robjvoorhees, Sep 10, 2014
Photo of jreitman
3.58/5  rDev -12.9%

A very interesting pub to say the least. Looks like it could be a biker bar, but has a real nice physical bar and some good beers on tap. This is the kind of place where when I went to the bathroom, I was expecting a good old fashioned trough. The taps selection was quite good and when we went in the afternoon it was pretty quite. Supposedly a really good place for live music, but I can't comment too much on that.

jreitman, Jan 03, 2003
Photo of Giantspace
3.58/5  rDev -12.9%

WOW...I have not been here in years. Last time was when they still had shows about 12 years ago. I really liked the old dumpy place with horrible bathrooms and good cheap beer. Oh well , things change. Still have the jukebox but not sure whats in it as I did not look. Music that I heard was good though.

A..A bit too loud to sit and hang out and a bit dark. Sat in the "band" room not at the bar. Cant comment on how the bar is but happy to say its the same bar that has been here for ever. This place needs to put some sound deadening material up.

Q..Pretty good quality on the food and the beer side. No complaints

S..Pretty poor. Our waitress could give a shit about us. Worst part was that there were only a few tables sitting. Cant imagine how poor it would be if it was busy. Maybe we get a better server next time.

S..Very nice beer selection. I counted 22 beers on the tap list. Did not notice if there was a bottle list. Back in the day the bottle list was great and well ahead of its time for back in the 1980's. Good selection of locals and out of state beers. I also like that the list gives you the price, glass size and ABV. I wish every bar would do this. I saw Clown shoes, Founders, Brooklyn( a few types), Yards, Philadelphia Brewing, Bruery, Boulder, Deschutes, Stoutds, Stillwater, Duclaw, Duvel, Petrus, and a few others.

F..food is mostly cajun and BBQ. LOTS of vegan and veggie options. We were all happy with our food, veggie and meat. $10 for a nice sandwich and side was much less than what I was expecting. There is a board with specials as well as the menu.

V..I would go back. Beers were $5.5-7 for tulips and pints. I think Kenzinger was $4.50 a pint. Food was priced well for what it was and where we were.

There are many other options in the area and even more if you want to walk a little bit. If you have never been here go check it out.

Giantspace, Aug 29, 2013
Photo of SpAiReArGsEonNE
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%

SpAiReArGsEonNE, Dec 17, 2013
Photo of DrunkinYogi
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%

DrunkinYogi, Jul 12, 2014
Photo of macesq
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%

macesq, Jun 17, 2014
Photo of jjboesen
3.76/5  rDev -8.5%

From the outside, Khyber Pass looks like an anonymous Old City dive bar, where tattoed grifters can hoist a few Yuenglings while waiting for the detox clinic to open.
Well, true; however, walk inside, into the narrow and dimly lit bar area, and cast your eyes upon a row of twenty-two tap handles that offer a thirsty patron a well-chosen selection of quality craft beers like Deschutes, Cigar City, Founders' and Goose Island - too name a few (along with a decent selection of Belgian beauties).

Add to this mix: correct glassware, efficient and knowledgable servers who keep your water glass filled along with a food menu heavy on meaty grub (In my case, a massive muffaleta sandwich) and you are in for a very great time at one of Philadelphia's classics.

If you are in the midst of a crawl, Eulogy is a few steps away. Enjoy.

jjboesen, Jun 25, 2014
Photo of mltobin
3.78/5  rDev -8%

Located conveniently close to the River Link ferry and Penn`s Landing is the Khyber Pub. This is a dive bar with a great happy hour special and a good range of beers. You will see a crowd with bike messengers, music fans, the young and the old. They carry beer From bottles of Yuengling to a couple nice belgian bottles and some local PA craft beers on tap from Yards and others. Service is very good, bartenders manage to keep up well with a loud and thirsty crowd. A great spot to have a couple inexpensive pints/bottles of American beer.

mltobin, Jun 21, 2009
Photo of SudsTerkel
3.78/5  rDev -8%

I was in Philly on biz and found myself in Penn Landing neighborhood on a Tuesday night, intending to go to Trinity which I discovered was closed on that evening. [By way of commentary, that's mighty pricey real estate to allow to lie fallow but I suspect they have their reasons for doing so.] Going around the corner to 2nd St., I spotted the beer signs in Khyber Pass Pub's windows and headed over.

It has a small bar area with a adjacent separate dining room. I headed over to the dining room and checked out the beer list and menu. KPP has a very deep and well thought out beer list of about 25 offerings. I always try to have beers from the local area so I ordered a Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin Ale from Easton which was very satisfying, along with a Philadelphia Brewing's "Kenzinger," finishing up with a Wells Bombardier ESB on cask, which though lacking local origins, I couldn't pass up.

The service was good & efficient; I also had a bowl of their Jambalaya which was generous and satisfying. The staff know their offerings and are well prepared to make recommendations to their patrons.

One thing I'd offer to management: both the dining room and the bar are too dark; I could hardly read the beer list and the menu. Also - a matter of personal preference - the music was too loud. It wasn't a big deal as I was by myself but if I was trying to carry on a conversation with somebody, it would have been challenged.

Overall, a solid establishment deserving your attention and I'll have to hit Trinity the next time.

SudsTerkel, Dec 04, 2013
Photo of AudioGilz
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%

Here is a great place to see some live music in a small intimate setting. Oh yeah, and they have a solid beer selection too, quite a bonus, but I wouldn't say it's focused on beer first. It's a close second though and that's a treat to be able to drink good beer while enjoying live music. It doesn't happen in any larger venues in the city. The taps are fresh, decent bottle selection, average prices, quick service. My only complaint is it gets DAMN HOT when it gets crowded in there. They need some serious air movement in there. Other than that, great joint.

AudioGilz, Jun 26, 2005
Photo of KXS
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%

Staff made the difference. Plus a fried green tomato blt that was truly exceptional. Loved it. Nice range of options for beer - I tend to be picky but found plenty of options, including a pricey Norwegian snifter that was twice as expensive as all other beers - but surprisingly worth it for the experience. Funky area of Philly. One of few I found recommended here on Advocate.com worth a repeat visit.

KXS, Apr 07, 2014
Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.89/5  rDev -5.4%

A nice little spot located near Penn's Landing. A few seconds away from Eulogy and Triumph, this is a good place to stop into. Its kind of small and dimly lit, with plenty of beer paraphernalia all over the place. The bartender who served me was incredibly friendly and very attentive. They have a good selection of beers from local stuff to imports to weird brews. The food is also something to try as they have a nice handwritten chalkboard menu with mostly artisanal and original selections. I had pork fat Cajun seasoned popcorn and a shrimp/oyster po'boy with a side of gravy smothered cheese fries. They also take part in beer events. Check this bar out sometime.

BeerForMuscle, Sep 04, 2013
Photo of rikatine
3.91/5  rDev -4.9%

We have been to Khyber Pass 3 times now. Great atmosphere, lighting, friendly and attentive service, and great tap list. We stopped in on a tour of the city, and really enjoyed ourselves. On our first visit we did not have a meal here, we liked it enough to return on a future visit. The place felt very cozy and welcoming. We did order the duck fat popcorn, and the bacon fat popcorn to go with our beers, and it was sooo good. The tap list here was very good as well.

On our next visit we sat in the "dining room" area and ate dinner. The experience here was not as good. Our waitress didn't know the tap list, and told me the beer I wanted was not on. My husband got up and got me one from the bar.

The next day we returned for their Hop Scotch event, sat at the bar, and again had a great time. The gumbo is awesome. We will return, but probably not for the dining room.

rikatine, May 09, 2013
Photo of Lorianneb
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Lorianneb, Jul 05, 2014
Photo of GeoffreyM
4/5  rDev -2.7%

GeoffreyM, Oct 21, 2013
Photo of mfunk9786
4/5  rDev -2.7%

mfunk9786, Jun 02, 2014
Photo of ColForbinBC
4/5  rDev -2.7%

ColForbinBC, Apr 12, 2014
Photo of kneary13
4/5  rDev -2.7%

kneary13, Aug 18, 2014
Photo of SlightlyGrey
4/5  rDev -2.7%

SlightlyGrey, Aug 26, 2014
Photo of JKWBMH
4/5  rDev -2.7%

JKWBMH, Feb 22, 2014
Photo of chcfan
4.03/5  rDev -1.9%

I never went to the old Khyber, so I can't compare the two. I can say that it is another in a long line of great Philadelphia beer bars. I say the more the merrier.

They have an extensive list of around 30 beers on tap. The list was heavy on American craft with a few good imports. I had a Flanders Red that I had never heard of before. The bartenders were very attentive.

Their NC pulled pork sandwich is very good and my friend said his Po Boy was also very strong.

The only real knock I have on this place (I took it out of the atmosphere score - I may will probably go back in winter to see if they have the opposite problem and possibly write a separate review) is that it was hot as balls in there. Granted, we were there in July, but it was a pretty temperate evening and felt hotter inside than out. It seems as if they either don't have AC, or what they have doesn't work really well. We actually left to go somewhere else for more beers because of this. I couldn't imagine seeing a show in those conditions.

chcfan, Jul 05, 2011
Photo of Foxman
4.06/5  rDev -1.2%

To call the Khyber an icon in the Philly music scene would be a gross understatement. From Jeffrey Gaines to The Butthole Surfers to The Dead Milkmen to 70,000 Tools, somebodies and nobodies have been playing here for decades. And way back when into the 80's, this place was known for its extensive and ecclectic beer selection, though at that time it was mostly imports. As American beer has blossomed, so has the selection here. But I get ahead of myself.

Step from the street into the glass-fronted building and you've come hip deep into the Philadelphia version of a grunge/punk/ska/hipster hangout. It's dark, it's gritty, and the edge in the air is punctuated and honed by the high-decibel music clamoring in from the stage to the right of the bar room. Most nights, since all bands have fans, it's elbow-to-elbow, but when the bands are playing, the area by the bar thins a a bit. But the bottom line is, for what it wants to be, the Khyber is spot-on, and if you don't feel comfortable here, chances are you wandered into the wrong place. The bar is crafted wood and mirror, a classic in its own right, and the restrooms are as clean as you could expect from an establishment that caters to such a wide ranging cast of crazies. The back bar is a treat to behold, with its history intact, and the jukebox is dense and far-reaching. And with the smoke gone, it's more fun than ever.

The beer is cold, and sure, sometimes too cold, but the glasses are clean, and nobody could care less whether you drink from the bottle or the glass. It's all good, and refreshing considering too many music venues are dedicated to pushing macros.

Service is strong. Bartenders have always been friendly, at least, and they make you feel like your order matters to them. The only issue I've ever run into is they're not always so patient when the music is loud and they can't get your order from you as timely as they would like. But with the crowd hovering at the bar, you realize soon that you need to make yourself heard.

The selection is damned good as well. Many, many imports, from England to Germany to Belgium, line the coolers behind the bar, and they were the mainstay for years. Now, though, domestic, and especially local, craft brew is the strength. Yards is ubiquitous, but also coming through you could find Victory, Weyerbacher, Stoudts, Troegs, Brooklyn, Dogfish Head, and Sly Fox. There are 7 or 8 taps, which I never counted, but that's my impression, and plenty of bottled selections as well. Simply, finding something to enjoyable wet your whistle is an effortless task here.

Food? Yes, they have it, but I've never tried it. In the old days I never seemed to have an appetite here, and now, I eat before I go.

Prices are right in line with about any place in the city that offers this much. You won't go broke.

I actually played here in the 80's and remember drinking Chimay for the first time after our set. So sure, it has a pretty fond place in my heart, but it's not sentimentality that has me giving such a strong review. Rather, it's the fact that this place is dedicated to damned good beer while establishing as strong an identity as any bar in the city. The Earth slipped a bit on its axis when this place closed for a short spell several years ago, but all is again right with the world.

Foxman, Feb 14, 2007
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Khyber Pass Pub in Philadelphia, PA
92 out of 100 based on 61 ratings.