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Local 44

Local 44Local 44

Taps: 20 / Bottles: 2
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
BA SCORE
95
world-class

46 Ratings
Ratings: 46
Reviews: 33
rAvg: 4.34
pDev: 8.76%
$$ - reasonable


[ Bar, Eatery ]

4333 Spruce St
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19104-4707
United States
phone: (215) 222-2337

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
Every day: 11:30am-2:00am
Kitchen open until midnight.

(Place added by: Local44 on 12-19-2008)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 46 | Reviews: 33 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

3.21/5  rDev -26%
vibe: 2.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3 | selection: 3.25 | food: 2.5 | $$

Kind of a pretentious divey place. It's got the smell of a wino bar but with zinc bar counters. Scrawled and uninformative beer list. The beers are not particularly worth a detour in this beer-rich town. Even as a tourist I found I had drunk most of them.

A vaguely interested bar maid did not add to the welcome. The clientele made me think of Bilbo Baggins in Alexandria on Ladies Night, but with the frat houses within crawling distance it must be a different crowd in the later evening. Food is greasy and also pretentious. Ridiculously hotly spice polenta (and so little of it!). On the plus side, you can take the interesting northside trolley lines and if you walk or ride further out you'll come to the actually worth the trip Dock Street Brewery & Restaurant. [transcribed from notes on May 30, 2012 visit]

10-29-2013 05:21:26 | More by mactrail
Photo of legend8706
legend8706

Virginia

5/5  rDev +15.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$$

This place was on my list of bottle shops to check out while in Philly and I must say it was well worth it! However the prices may be a little steep, drinking a beer on tap while shopping for beer made it worth it! Great customer service, great selection, decent prices make this an ultimate place to check out while in Philly! The one thing that is crazy about this place is that its in West Philly (which isn't the nicest of areas IMHO), but it somehow works for them! The bottle shop is separate from the restaurant, but if you have time do stop by the restaurant and grab a brew and some grub!

01-02-2013 12:52:02 | More by legend8706
Photo of amphion1065
amphion1065

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -6.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$

Boston and Chicago are often described as cities "of neighborhoods." Philadelphia? Not so much, but Local 44 would make me consider it.

Tucked away on a quiet corner in West Philly, Local 44 offers just about everything you'd want in a local bar. The vibe manages to be both hip and inviting, homey and exciting. I've eaten and drank here twice now, and loved each visit. The draft list does a fine job balancing local breweries and beer geek favorites. Sly Fox, Yards and PBC are in good company alongside Great Divide, Lost Abbey, and Franziskaner. There are always one or two offerings on cask, and charmingly only Orval and a gluten-free option in bottles.

Go here with an appetite, though you won't need too much money - there are many options in the sub-$10 range here. On my last visit, I instantly regretted ordering my olive-oil poached, banana pepper-laden tuna melt as soon as I saw my friend's perfectly medium rare burger with a runny fried egg on top. I tend to avoid brunch like the plague, but the sweet potato latkes and maple-glazed hush puppies looked damn fine.

Every staff member is almost definitely cooler than I am. The bartenders and servers wouldn't look out of place in any number of bars in Cambridge or Fort Greene, and they're some of the friendliest beer bar employees I've ever come across. I've drank at the bar and eaten at tables, and the service has been helpful, courteous and incredibly efficient each time.

I'll be back to Local 44 for a PtY tapping or, more likely Sunday night Quizzo. A wonderful spot, one any neighborhood would be proud to call its own.

10-14-2011 01:22:33 | More by amphion1065
Photo of ColForbinBC
ColForbinBC

New Jersey

4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$

Started a mini beer excursion here at Local 44. This place isn't that far from my work and has been on my list to check out for quite some time.

A small, clean, bar area and an area with tables separated by a half wall. Mostly wood interior, a very calm, inviting environment.

Their tap list was excellent, anchored by Russian River Damnation and Port Mongo. They also had a couple Allagash's, Ommegang's, a couple locals (Victory, Sly Fox) and some German beers (Ayinger and Franziskaner, I believe.) We were here for the Port Mongo. I had only had it once before and my friend had never had it.

This is a place I have to keep on my radar. They always have some great beers in the rotation and is definitely worth returning on a regular basis.

09-19-2011 14:15:07 | More by ColForbinBC
Photo of VegasBill
VegasBill

Nevada

4.16/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$

Normally I would not travel this far from downtown,but with the promise from fellow BA'ers of so many of my beloved Russian River beers and with the great Philly bus system I went. This is a very small pub but I liked the atmosphere right away.As far as Russian River, one yes my friends one, Damnaton, which is one of the few I dont care for!!
But the bartender was very friendly and helpful and turned me on to the Williams Brothers 7 Giraffes, he explained everything about it and I like it so much and it is a complex beer, for me at least, I had two.
The bartender also said the most of the time they have two or three Russian River selections.

07-04-2011 20:45:44 | More by VegasBill
Photo of DoubleSimcoe
DoubleSimcoe

New York

4.43/5  rDev +2.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2.5 | $$

My fifth and final stop of my Philly beer tour (after Monk's, Foodery, Yards and Kraftwork).

The wife and I were lucky enough to find parking near and a table at Local 44 on a Friday night. The place was packed (all tables taken, two-people deep at the bar), but still manageable. This is not one of those bars that, when crowded, makes you want to chop somebody in half with your pocket chainsaw before leaving.

Ambience is cozy and warm, like a mountain lodge full of inoffensive, friendly Philly hipsters, complete with beards, stevedore's caps and the whole uniform.

They offer 18 taps and 2 casks (Yards plus Fuller's London Porter when I visited). A good mix of American crafts and quality Belgian and German imports: Ommegang, Oskar Blues, Green Flash, Great Divide (Espresso Yeti), Southern Tier, Corsendonk, Schneider Weisse...

Food is very basic, menu limited. Edible and fairly priced, but that's about it. I got a spicy pastrami sandwich that tasted like some nondescript cardboard-y deli meat, while the wife's spicy mac was more like a forgettable Mexican pasta salad, utterly devoid of excitement. Fries were truly delicious and salty, though.

Prices are good, $9 for a big sandwich with fries and $5 for small snifters of Southern Tier 2XIPA and Great Divide Espresso Yeti. Wow!

But the best thing about Local 44 is not the beer, not the ambiance but the service. Truly top-notch. Every server complements and helps each other and they all help you, the guest, instead of fencing off questions with the classic "I'll call your server" or "order from the bar". I was stunned. Despite being packed, every server that walked by our table stopped to check on us. AND the bartender himself took the time to step outside the bar and come to our table to take our order. Amazing or what!

Next time I'm in Philly, I'll be coming to Local 44. You bet I will!

02-05-2011 22:25:25 | More by DoubleSimcoe
Photo of pdeepak
pdeepak

Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +0.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$

Another place near University City that I make it a point to go to every 2 weeks or so.

The first time I went, I was amazed to find a HEAVY Russian River selection on the chalkboard: Consecration, Damnation, Blind Pig and Pliny the Elder. Needless to say, me and my friends quaffed them all and the guy behind the bar was extremely helpful. They have a nice rotating selection and vibe of the place is cool and very neighborhoody. Was also there for the FIFA world cup and had a blast.

The food is good: stick with standard bar fare as the wings are amazing and the burger and fries was out of this world.

01-08-2011 10:54:23 | More by pdeepak
Photo of jjboesen
jjboesen

Maryland

4.28/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$

For my 130th pub review (Applause), I have chosen this quaint little University City gem. During a recent three-day weekend in Philadelphia, Local 44 was my final stop and an invigorating hike to 30th Street Station for the train home. Located on a quiet and leafy residential area near Penn University, Local 44 retains a neighborly and inviting vibe. It is small; it consists of a dimly lit bar area and an additional, and larger, room opposite a wall. The bar itself can accommodate about twenty-five people. There is an interesting tiled ceiling that is worth a peek while downing your last pint.

As noted in previous reviews, Local 44 has a small, but well selected array of 19 taps with two casks (Fuller London Pride and ESB) written on the chalk board behind the bar. In addition to the aforementioned casks, my quaffs for that afternoon were Founders Pale Ale, Elysian Immortal IPA and the delicious Love Stout from Yard's Brewing. Oh yes, there is a single bottled beer: Orval. Why Orval? Don't know; didn't ask. I received very efficient service at the bar from Cass, who passed the "water test" with flying colors. (See my review for Race Street Café.)

My visit occurred during Weekend Brunch - which must be a Philly thing - so I can only comment on that menu. For brunch, I had the Pastrami Hash, which was actually a pastrami sandwich; it was enjoyed nevertheless. Good marks for the diversity and the freshness of it all.

As noted, Local 44 is somewhat away from your usual Center City haunts, but is well worth the 20-minute ride on Bus 42 to get here.

11-16-2010 17:26:48 | More by jjboesen
Photo of glid02
glid02

Georgia

4.13/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$

Trekked over here from the suburbs during a recent stop in the city.

Atmosphere is good. It's got a very nice neighborhood feel to it. I felt as though half the people in the bar were regulars and the servers did their best to make you feel that way too. A long bar greets you upon entering on the left with a good deal of tables on the right. A large doorway on the right opens up into even more seating. The beer list is written on a chalkboard at the far end of the bar and a TV sits directly in the middle.

Quality is good. All glassware is appropriate and I especially appreciated their stubby glasses for half-pours. The temperature and head levels are also nice.

Service is also good. They seemed a bit understaffed while I was there and I had to wait longer than I'm used to a few times to put in my next order. That said, when the server was able to make it around she was very friendly.

Selection is very good. Around 15 taps with two beer engines. While I was there a good deal of locals were represented along with some of CA's finest.

Food was underwhelming. The burger I ordered was OK but with the recent burger revolution I was a bit disappointed. The fries were solid and the rest of their menu did look interesting.

Value is good. The half-pours are a good deal and even if you get a full pint it won't hit your wallet very hard.

Overall this place is a bit off the beaten path but that's what makes it more of a neighborhood bar. A nice selection with friendly service makes this place worth a stop if you're near the area.

10-28-2010 01:25:44 | More by glid02
Photo of etannen
etannen

Pennsylvania

4.78/5  rDev +10.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$

I live in West Philadelphia right around the corner from Local 44 and it has been a place of solace and wonderment for me throughout my time living here. The selection is ample, 20 beers on tap, they cycle through numerous local brews and there are no macros. The french fires are well done, my friends and I ended up going through three orders this past Tuesday night. The crowd is a diverse one, given the nature of West Philly. I was fortunate enough to practice my French with an Algerian fellow last Friday. The bartender is very personable, and started to recognize my housemates and I after only our second visit. I highly recommend this bar to anyone coming through West Philly!

09-19-2010 02:07:20 | More by etannen
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Local 44 in Philadelphia, PA
95 out of 100 based on 46 ratings.