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Khyber Pass Pub

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

63 Ratings
Ratings: 63
Reviews: 35
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: 63 | Reviews: 35 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of slander
4.14/5  rDev +0.7%

Post Ludwig's Octoberfest finds us randomly hitting and missing around philly. Haven't really seen too of the neighborhood to date 'cept Eulogy so here we are...
A long narrow room with a dark wood "L" shaped bar seating a dozen. High ceiling with ancient chandeliers above, and large framed mirrors behind the bar. A center piece lined with Xmas strung lighting holds mirrored shelves with books, glasses and various pieces. Ceramic bar lights with colorful shades are spotted here and there along the length of the bar, TV, old beer signs, darts, and a good juke box. From the bar, you're looking into the side room where they have the stage for bands to set up.
Posted boards read "Bud free or die!!" and "No crap on tap", and so it is... 10 taps, a nice mix of regional micros and imports (DogfishHead Punkin, Victory Prima Pils, Yards George Washington Porter & Philadelphia Pale Ale, Yuengling Black & Tan, Brooklyn Brown, Anchor Steam, Beamish, Paulaner, Stella) and roughly 2 dozen bottles (Duchess, Chimay, Duvel, Hoegaarden, and it tapers down to macros and maltos). Kind of dark and somewhat divey overall, but pleasant enough for a Saturday afternoon...

slander, Oct 11, 2004
Photo of woodychandler
4.2/5  rDev +2.2%

The entryway was at a slight angle to the street, so as I went in the door, I had to make a left-oblique and the "U"-shaped wooden bar was right there. There were three lamps spaced out over the length of the bar, plus a few chandeliers, but the lighting was dim, at best. The bar ran along the left-hand side with the back bar against the left wall. The back bar was especially notable for its ornate woodwork and lengthy mirrors. Just past the end of the bar was the Men's washroom, which was an experience all its own. Through a couple of doorways to the right was the stage all of the way forward; a couple of tables and chairs in the center; and the engineer's board, all of the way aft. I wanted to give this place the same marks for "Atmosphere" that I gave Delilah's in CHI, but it wasn't quite the same.

Regarding their beer selection, the bottles were not neccesarily focused on craft beer, but every one of the taps were special. It is also especially notable that they were one of Yards' first three accounts.

woodychandler, Feb 04, 2007
Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.17/5  rDev +1.5%

This place is the bomb. The wife and I bar-hopped around Old City on a Saturday evening and this was our favorite joint. So different, and far removed from the suburban-white-kid-and-fratty-drunkenness crowded atmosphere of other bars in the area.

This is more of a South Philly corner bar, cool and quiet. 20 taps and 2 casks, with some stunning stuff from Goose Island (I assume they had a Goose event): Bourbon County, Bourbon County Barleywine, Matilda, Pere Jacques, Illinois... plus Lagunitas Hairy Eyeball, Philadelphia Brewing Company, Sly Fox...

Funny music (80's Hall & Oates-style tunes), nice bartenders and bouncer, perfect table by the window looking on 2nd street and all the action. I dig this place. j

Prices weren't so cheap for the Bourbon County stouts... $10 each. But the regular brews are fine at around $6. Definitely a gem in Old City I will return to often.

DoubleSimcoe, Jan 28, 2014
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.08/5  rDev -0.7%

The Khyber, formerly known as the Khyber Pass Pub, is a Philadelphia landmark. One of Philly's first- and best -beer bars! This is one of the places that started the Yuengling craze by serving bottles of their porter. The only thing that the Khyber is better known for is it's music. With an enormous number of famous bands stopping here on their first or second tours of the states, the Khyber is Philly's version of C.B.G.B.'s. The bartenders are very cool, but it can be hard to get a beer sometimes when it's busy. They serve some really great Burritos and the juke box is loaded with great stuff. There's a wide range of bottled beers, including alot of Belgian's (Update March 2003- bottles removed; selection score dropped from 4.0 to 3.5 Update... bottles back, but not as good as they used to be.), and the taps are constantly changing. Additionally, they pour alot of local brands which is nice. So if you're in the mood for some good beers in a relaxed, grungy atmosphere, the Khyber's the place!

NeroFiddled, Jul 22, 2002
Photo of Gavage
4.15/5  rDev +1%

Stopped here on a Saturday afternoon and the fisrt thing I noticed was the place was very dark. Big wooden bar seats about 20 and there are a bunch of tables in the room. Two large TVs showing college football games. Loads of Belgian beer flags and beer signs line the walls.

There were about 20 beers on draft that covered a nice mix of styles. Service was good and friendly depsite the large afternoon crowd. Defintely a cool place to stop in Old City.

Gavage, Thursday at 11:57 AM
Photo of sholland119
4.45/5  rDev +8.3%

Wow, what a remake! The city's "grittiest" rock club cleaned up (but not too much) and with usable bathrooms. Who'd a thunk it?

I had not been to the old Khyber in probably 20 years, but as best I knew it was still a scary dump, albeit with good beer. The initial concept for the remake was as an izikaya; I am happy to say they ditched that and went for cajun food and great craft beer.

We grabbed a couple of seats at the bar early on a Saturday afternoon. Great welcoming vibe. The Khyber has had a few layers of grit scraped off but has not been scrubbed to a shiny white. A few layers of grime remain.

The beer lineup was heavy on RIS as that was the theme for the day (with cool "Tsar Power" t-shirts for only $7; awesome). All great choices from locals like Dock Street Prince Myshkin's to the first 2011 tapping of KBS. We could have stayed all day, but for the need to make it home without passing out.

Food was quite delicious. Bacon grease popcorn with cajun spices made for a delicious appetizer (served in a brown bag so you could see the grease spots develop), followed by a chicken poboy which was also quite tasty (grilled chicken is not, of course, the recommended protein for a poboy; will check back in 40 pounds for a proper poboy with debris, just like they serve in Nola).

Service was prompt and friendly. We loved this place and will visit again soon.

sholland119, Mar 31, 2011
Photo of InspectorBob
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

InspectorBob, Feb 26, 2014
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 seanchai
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

seanchai, Dec 31, 2013
Photo of spointon
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

spointon, Jul 10, 2014
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 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 orangesol
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

orangesol, Jun 03, 2014
Photo of blitheringidiot
4.2/5  rDev +2.2%

How I have somewhow managed to NOT review the Khyber is beyond me. The Khyber has two floors, but for beer, you'll want to stay downstairs. Upstairs has PBR on tap and that's it! Downstairs has 10 taps and almost ALL are local. Ambiance wise, the Khyber wins me over with a rustic old feel that says Serious Beer bar. Worn wood, cluttered back bar and BONUS! The back bar is a mirrored tryptich from an actual World's Fair. It's stunning and worn! The bar on the left seats about 20, across from a killer juke box.

Beers selection is always locally focused. Troegs Trogenator, Clipper City Category 5, Yards Saison, Yards Pale, Sly Fox Weisse, Lion Lionshead, Anchor Celebration, Flying Fish Porter, Youngs Double Chocolate Stout and in the On deck Circle is Brooklyn Chocolate, Heavyweight Perkunos Hammer and Vic'ry Prima Pils.

Foodwise, I know that they do sell some, but if you want food, go elsewhere!!! If you want to drink good local beer in a speakeasy historical bar, go to the Khyber.

Last swigs: Can get smoky and they charge a cover on band nights but kudos for their killer Sunday event called "Punish Your Liver" $15 all you can drink, $10 after midnight with a live DJ.

Could you take your Mother here? Heck no!!! The worst bathrooms in the city belong to the Khyber and it gets loud and smoky. But the Khyber is a local fave of mine. p.s. Brownies is next door and Eulogy is across the corner.

blitheringidiot, Nov 24, 2005
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 DrunkinYogi
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%

DrunkinYogi, Jul 12, 2014
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.14/5  rDev +0.7%

The Khyber is clearly some sort of awesome music venue/ beer bar hybrid. The building is essentially two narrow lots, typical of center city, except they’re joined in the middle. On the right you have a dark graffitied place to get your rock on, on the left you can find a fantastic selection of local brews.

On first inspection, this place just looked like your typical dirty dive bar, but upon further review, this place is actually quite attractive. What really got my attention was the woodwork in the shelves behind the bar. There were little griffins or something with red LEDs or Christmas lights for eyes, coats of arms of sorts and what are those, ducks? It was really sharp. Adding to this are decorative lights raised off the bar on narrow poles that gave a very quaint and classy feel. That, topped of with some ornate chandeliers and high ceilings made me reconsider my “dirty dive” first impression. None-the less, as ornate, comforting and elaborate the artistry of this place is, it still has a enveloping darkness to it.

On tap for the day was Hoegaarden, Hop Devil, Yard’s Saison (which I nabbed), Brooklyn Lager, Tröegs Dopplebock and Pils, De Koenig, Yuengling’s Lager, Stoudt’s Gold, #9 and O’Reilly’s Irish Stout. That pretty much does it for the region. Good job. The bottles included some imports, but mostly the bigger named ones.

The bartender was attentive and friendly without being over assertive or annoying. In fact, he seemed like a really cool guy. That’s a rare find. He was quick with the drinks and with keeping the waters full. I realized that I liked the guy and The Khyber when some guy walked in off the street and ordered a Bud Light. The tender replied “we don’t serve anything with the name “light” on-tap.” He had to repeat this a few times to get his message across. The tone of his voice made me chuckle.

I like this place. They seem to have a really good focus on beer and hire the right people to really advocate the local beer scene. I’ll be back for sure.

DarkerTheBetter, Aug 28, 2006
Photo of ColForbinBC
4/5  rDev -2.7%

ColForbinBC, Apr 12, 2014
Photo of rfgetz
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%

Atmosphere retains a slight amount of the grittiness of its past. Dimly lit, well aged dark hand crafted wood bar is the centerpiece of the room with a mish-mash of beer logo adorned signs and flags on the beat up walls. Beers available on draught hang above the bar on individual pieces of slate with the name written in white chalk. Dinning room ajacent to the main bar in a sparsely decotrated, again dark room.

Nice selection of 25+ drafts, solid mix of local and domestic craft and Belgian beers, could use some solid non-Belgian imports thrown in. Bottle list is available, with a focus on Belgians and domestic craft. Nice list of events, with something fun going on on almost a twice a month basis.

Food menu is outstanding. Southern fare with a good mix of cajun, creole and BBQ. The Po Boys and Muffaletta were some of the best outside of New Orleans, the BBQ was fantastically juicy and flavorful without being overly charred or smoked. Fantastic rotation of specials for sandwiches and sides.

Fantastic reinvention of a bar which maintains character but expands on the beer and takes it to a whole new level with the food.

rfgetz, Sep 26, 2011
Photo of BARFLYB
4.14/5  rDev +0.7%

It's been a real long time since I've been here and realize it's within walking distance from Eulogy. This was for their grand reopening event recently. I met the owner at Monk's and he's good people.

Old City, Khyber is split between a bar area and a seating area, left and right. The bar area is large but it was crowded as hell in there. Either way the bar seats about 15 people or so and wraps around. Alot of beer signs on the wall and a nice Rodenbach banner. I likes it. Kinda dark, not to trendy, not the cleanest spot but faar from dirty. The eating area was nice though and a bit brighter. Very nice bathroom, dark, clean.

Quality is up there, about 20 taps or so plus two pumps. Some nice proper glassware and even Rodenbach glasses, these people must love their roadies down there. Clean glasses, even on a insanely busy night. I had no problem getting drinks although there were like 5 bartenders on, no time to chit chat.

They had a great selection on, I was double fisting sculpin and pliny like nobodys buisness. Also had some curieux and Yards Bourbon Barrel porter, in a Weyerbacher tulip glass. The rest of the list was superb to and the prices were not so bad considering it's old city here. (im talking about the regular menu prices here, not the grand opening party prices, which was a knockout) I think this place has something like 70 or so bottles to choose from. Food was also served but I'll grab it next time. I heard this place changed alot over the years and I like it where it is at now.

BARFLYB, Dec 04, 2010
Photo of hoppymcgee
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

hoppymcgee, Jan 06, 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 SlightlyGrey
4/5  rDev -2.7%

SlightlyGrey, Aug 26, 2014
Photo of soulcougher
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

soulcougher, Jun 04, 2014
Photo of tbeckett
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

tbeckett, Jul 22, 2014
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Khyber Pass Pub in Philadelphia, PA
92 out of 100 based on 63 ratings.