Local 44

Not Rated.
Local 44Local 44
BA SCORE
95
world-class

33 Reviews
Reviews: 33
Visits: 61
rAvg: 4.33
pDev: n/a
Taps: 20
Bottles: 2
Cask: Y
[ Bar, Eatery ]

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

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
Place added by: Local44 on 12-19-2008

Every day: 11:30am-2:00am
Kitchen open until midnight.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 33 | Visits: 61
Photo of slk22
4.14/5  rDev -4.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

I visited Local 44 on a Saturday afternoon and it was pretty dead, which gave me ample time to talk with the bartender. The place is quite dark in lighting and decor as well. When I stepped out into the sun it was like coming out of a movie theater. Anyway, the decor is simple and attractive, mainly dark wood. There are two rooms, a bar area and a table area, although you can get food at either. The beer selection consists of 20 taps, 2 beers on cask, and 1 in bottle (Orval). The selection was quite interesting, featuring beers from all over the country with a few locals thrown in. Smuttynose, yards, southern tier, lagunitas, bear republic, sly fox, and PBC to name a few. No macro stuff. I had a Russian River Consecration, which was served in appropriate glassware (tulip). The bartender was very friendly and quite knowledgeable, giving a flavor profile of various beers on tap when asked as well as offering samples. Prices were around $5 per pint and up to $7 for some of the high ABV stuff such as the Consecration, pretty reasonable for the northeast. I wouldn't make a special trip there if I were coming from out of town, but if it were in my neighborhood I would definitely go back. (1,200 characters)

Photo of regspeir
3.88/5  rDev -10.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I have finally been to the place enough times to feel I can get a handle on reviewing it. My first time was not great and I wasn't sure i would ever come back. The place was new and seemed confused as to what kind of place it was trying to be - restuarant, neighborhood bar, trendy nightspot, whatever. It wasn't any of these. Now that I have been back a few times, I have come to enjoy this place. The bar area isn't large but has a very warm feel to it. All that wood, the darkness, etc. overcome even the multiple large TV's to tend it toward that cozy neighborhood feel. Nearly twenty taps and two hand-pumps are divided up into a great range of options, so beer selection is this place's strong point. The bartenders are very attentive. The "restaurant" half, on the other hand, is cramped, noisey and uncomfortable. The food is mixed. Try the hushpuppies, fritters or any of the breakfast "sandwiches." The burgers, fish and chips, wings and other barfood were meso-meso. There are nice set of vegetarian options. The only complaints I have are that they constantly seem to run out of glassware and, when they are busy, they want to hustle you out of the "dining" area. They basically kick you out, if you are finished eating, even if you are still ordering beers, etc. All-in-all though, this is a great addition to West Philadelphia and...especially earned points by offering me Younger and Registration Ale :) (1,418 characters)

Photo of rfgetz
4.16/5  rDev -3.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

A small, unasuming bar in the corner of a small, unassuming section of the city. The atmosphere is comfortable yet unspectacular, lots of wood and paint and not much else. The beer menu is really hit or miss with the selection, so check ahead - 2-3 of the taps can be something special during a slow week while for events, they can get 15 steallar things lined up. No fault of theirs, but with a ton of good beer spots in the city, just hard to travel to a spot that can be hot or cold. The services is very good even in a crowd the bar tender knows who has been waiting, and most know the product very well. Only been here for the beer, but will want to return to this place again. (682 characters)

Photo of BigIrishman
4.9/5  rDev +13.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Had to make it down to Russian River day at the Local 44...

This has to be one of the top beer bars in all of philly (and that's saying someething). They had 6 taps of Russian River and the rest were an assortment of great stuff from locals as well as tough to find places in California. The place was packed for the day and the staff were amazing. I sat at the bar with a friend and although the place was hopping, I never waited between rounds. Everything was delicious and fresh and the prices were ridiculous. Not too many places you go to will have pints of PtE for under $7...The food is pretty good and the atmosphere is awesome, very easy to get a conversation started...Overall awesome experience. (707 characters)

Photo of jwhancher
3.95/5  rDev -8.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Came here for the first time tonight after hearing about this place after the Philly beer raids. Small but quaint bar. Nice oak wood character with your now standard craft beer hipster chalk board listing of available beers. Had a decent beer list but was only really interested in the Sierra Nevada beers they had specially on tap for Philly Beer Week. Service was about average. They were pretty busy at the time buy I wish the bartenders had checked up a little more often. Plus, the bartender didn't say thank you after picking up the check - a big no-no in my book. Food was attractively priced: $8 for a burger. It came out great and was pleasantly surprised. Only small pitfall was the final bill. Thought it would have come out a little cheaper. But still, I guess even the litlle guys have to pay the bills. (816 characters)

Photo of Wolfhausen
4.22/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

The local 44 has been a beer bar I keep coming back to again and again. The atmosphere is very low key where you can meet with friends for a coversation, food and most important good beer.

The selection here is always in constant motion. Just about every week I find new and exciting beers on tap. I do find that a significant portion of the brews are from the west coast, mainly California. They also have 2 casks on hand at all times.

The food is well made and tasty. Though the selection is small it's quality and taste will keep you satisfied.

Finally the atmosphere is a huge reason I love this place. Situated on the corner of 44th and Spruce this bar maintains a local neighborhood vibe mixed with pinch of modernernist style.
The Local 44 is a must visit to any one this side of the Schuylkill. (807 characters)

Photo of Skemo
4.75/5  rDev +9.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

One of the few West Philadelphia bars actually worth a damn. The beer selection is very impressive, changes frequently, and has some genuine gems. In addition to the 20 or so tap lines, they have two cask lines as well. The cask selection isn't great, usually a local bitter or pale ale. Value is what sets this bar from the others, especially compared to the Center City haunts. Most of the beers are 5 dollars or less, and when coupled with the aforementioned selection, makes this an affordable bar well worth the trip.

Atmosphere is great, modern without being pretentious, also, its not infested with hipsters like many of the venerable Old City/Northern Liberties places. The food is definitely note worthy as well. The chef took your typical bar fare and put a nice contemporary spin on it. Some highlights include the Fish and Chips with cornbread hushpuppies, and the Steak Sandwich with a garlic pressed baguette with a side of plantations. Again, the food is a very good value as well.

A true West Philadelphia gem, if this was in Center City it would be one of the most popular beer bars in the city. (1,115 characters)

Photo of broth223
4.43/5  rDev +2.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Overview: If you are looking to try the local flavor of Pennsylvania brews then look no further than the Local 44 brewpub. The beer selection showcased many very good beers from PA/DE area but also had nice beers from outside the area as well. During my visit Russian River's Blind Pig stands out in my mind. The bartender was very knowledgeable, quick, and friendly. I even asked her for a recommendation and she came through in spades.

Atmosphere: This pub has gone a long long way from when it was an Irish dive bar. It is pretty light, a big screen above the bar, hard wood all over the place very pleasant.

Quality: All the beer is of good - excellent quality.

Service: As I said in my overview the bartender was awesome. She was fast and knowledgeable and friendly.

Selection: 20 taps 2 casks and 1 bottle served. Needless to say they have a vast selection of beer. The beer list is on their website.
http://www.local44beerbar.com/index.htm

Food: I had the cheeseburger with french fries my standard wherever I go. I found it good and on par with bar food prices.

Value: Very reasonable prices on Monday - Friday 5pm to 7pm all local beers are $3.00 (those brewed in PA/DE). You can't beat that. (1,211 characters)

Photo of Soonami
4.55/5  rDev +5.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

For the last day of Philly Beer Week, at the Russian River Event, my drinking buddy and I had PtE, Supplication, Consecretion, Registration, and Blind Pig
___

On New Years Day, I had RR Temptation, LA Angel's Share Bourbon Barrel, Ommegang Adoration, and Allagash Interlude--so pretty epic. Get on the email list to hear about anything new kegs and exciting events!

___

20 beers on tap, 2 on hand-pump cask, 1 bottle (Orval)

They always have a great selection of beer on tap that range from Belgian white to West Coast DIPA to English Bitter on cask. If you like beer you will be able to find several things to try and if all fails, Kenzinger for $3.30. The prices for most beer range from $4.40-5.50 with the occasional rarity going for around $7 for a 10-12oz. Although you will probably find more hyped beers at monk's, they always seem to have a few from Bell's, RR, Port, Lagunitas, Green Flash, or Founders here.

The food here is very good too. I especially like the mini-corndogs and the fries. They have a pretty good burgers and sandwiches and are also very Veg. friendly.

Highly recommended, the service is always quick and helpful, the food is good, they play local sports, and the crowd though sometimes a bit rowdy is fun. This is how a bar should be: dark, covered in wood, and crowded. Only thing is that since it's so close to Penn, earlier is better than later for this place (1,398 characters)

Photo of Jeremym27
4.58/5  rDev +5.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

my favorite place to visit in the city including places like monks and eulogy. They have a great and ever rotation selection with great local drafts and a variety of some imports and other American crafts.

Service has been good every time I have been there and the food is great, even though the menu is a little odd.

Being in college one of the best things about the 44 is the prices. Drafts are around $4.5 - $5 and every option on the menu is <$10

Great atmosphere and prices make this a must hit in west philly (522 characters)

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Quickly becoming one of my favorite places to stop for a bite to eat and some decent beer, Local 44 has me finding a lot more reasons to get over to University City (the ICA, the Indian grocery store, the Bridge theater, etc.).

The beer selection never fails, and there's usually something interesting on cask (18 taps, 2 casks, 1 bottle - Orval, but you knew that, right?). So that said, let's forget about it and move on...

Spanky and Leigh really know how to put together a comfortable place. They did it with the Memphis Taproom, and they've done it again here (even better!). It's just so comfortable and relaxing. Stop in for a late lunch or early dinner and bask in the soft light that floats above you, and the warm glow coming through the orange glass of the doorway. Then there are all of the other interesting accompaniments, and whalla, there you have it.

But let's not forget the food. It's interesting, and slightly quirky, but not too much so. And the execution is perfect. Everything that I've had has been done without flaw. The prices are reasonable, and the portions are properly sized (don't expect BIG plates, or rip-off tapas).

Other than what I've mentioned above, what strikes me in a positive and endearing way is how integrated the clientele is. Now I'm not talking black and white here, that's too obvious for University City - but what I am referring to is the number of young families who pop in, the artists, the intelligentsia, the white-collar crowd, the blue-collar joes, and the older locals. And where you might expect to have the place over-run by lunk-head college kids that's not the case either (it is Penn & Drexel of course !!!) except later at night.

So, given everything, you'd have to be a fool not to stop by. (1,759 characters)

Photo of stingrayvr6
4.15/5  rDev -4.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 2 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Fantastic place. Modern, trendy and hip with a lot of college kids as it is right up the street from Penn. Unbeatable beer selection, truly world class. They have everything from Victory to Hop Rod Rye and Hop wallop and Trappist beer. Food was excellent with a good selection of pub food, though a little more trendy than your typical fare. My only complaint was that it took quite a while to get a seat, even though there were plenty of empty tables, and everything (except the beer) took forever to come out. As soon as we got the beer, none of that mattered, had the Hop Rod Rye for the first time and it was phenomenal. Definitely a place to visit, you will probably never find a better beer selection anywhere. (716 characters)

Photo of astrasday
4.64/5  rDev +7.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

An old friend and I were ambling around West Philly upon my arrival a few hours before. I suggested we find a good beer spot. We started to wonder and serendipitously came upon this great little spot.

Atmosphere is just what I want from a bar. Lovely hardwood, big bar, nice lighting, homey feel without the pretense.

Quality is unquestioning. 21 taps (including 2 cask) and not one was wasted an macro swill despite its collegiate locale. I enjoyed 16 oz. pours of Hop Wallop, Racer 5 on cask and Sly Fox O'Reilly's Stout each beer hovering either a few cents below or above 5 bucks. Reasonable prices? Yes. Sweet? I think so.

Service was great. The bartender was friendly, knew his stuff and was up to talk about beer, the neighborhood or whatever. Liberal with tastings and willing to accommodate you in your search for the next beer to order was a nice touch.

If I ever make a home in West Philly, expect to see me here weekly. (935 characters)

Photo of dsa7783
3.8/5  rDev -12.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Located in a bustling college section of West Philly in the UPENN district, this hole in the wall college institution boasts a fine selection of great beers...
Everything from Troegs, Victory, a few Belgians, Ommegang, Sixpoint...
Mostly a much younger, college-age crowd, with a decent sized space, not too cramped, dishing out pub fare...
Friendly staff
Slightly out of the way from Central Philadelphia, but definitely worth a stop-in if you're in the area...
Would try going here again if it were closer to downtown... Otherwise, probably the best place in the area... (572 characters)

Photo of Stairsvictim
4.88/5  rDev +12.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Located on Spruce St near 44th, Local 44 is not to be missed.

The atmosphere is warm, inviting and casual. with a long bar and many pub style tables in one room. And another room with tables for larger parties.

The beer list was excellent, with at least 20 beers on draft. And all there to make a beer lovers eyes widen. The bartender was very knowledgeable of beer and pointed out some beers that were almost gone, to be sure I was able to enjoy them before it was too late.{Russian River]

Some beers I was happy to have on draft that night are:
Pliny the Elder, Rejection, and Redemption. all by Russian River. and also Stone 12th anniversary stout.

The food here is yummy. I had the Rueben Fritters and Buffalo Wings. The fritters were fantastic. and the wings were big, very tasty, and not too hot.

This bar was a super experience.
I live 1 1/2 hours away from Philly and plan on making another trip just to visit this bar again. (941 characters)

Photo of John_M
4.8/5  rDev +10.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

My first visit to this excellent Philly beer bar. I know I keep on saying this, but what I wouldn't give to have this as my neighborhood bar.

Located at the corner of 44th and Spruce, I was surprised by the size of the place and how nicely appointed the place was. Everything was done up in dark green and dark wood, giving the place a nice, solid look. As you walk in the door, there is a long bar to your immediate left, with some tables and chairs to the right. There is sort of a seperate dining area, which while not huge, was good size I thought. I didn't have much of an opportunity to explore, as the overwhelming crowd for the Russian River event quickly made moving around problematic. In any event, this place has a very nice, very relaxed, low key vibe that I really liked. Quality of the beer selection on this particular day was off the chart exceptional. There were 7 RR beers on tap, along with two english ales on cask (Fuller's London Pride and the ESB), Ayinger Celebrator, and another 10 or so craft beer selections. There is no crap on tap or in bottles here - in fact the only bottled beer they have is the Orval.

As I was here for the RR event, there was very quickly a large, nearly overbearing crowd. At some places the service can really suck when this happens, with the staff becoming increasingly snarly, snarky and unpleasant. Not here. Depite a huge, aggressive and often testy crowd, the staff kept their cool and their sense of humor, handling the crowd very well. When lack of glassware became an issue, the bartender went out to the dining room, canvassing the tavern for glassware. In short, given the circumstances, I thought the service here was outstanding.

Didn't get any food, but ordering food on this day would have been next to impossible anyway, given the crowd. Prices were reasonable as well I thought, with the Younger and Consecration going for $7.70 a glass, and all the other RR beers going for $6.60. I think pints of everything else were around $5.

This is an absolutely outstanding place. Yet another in beer rich Philly... (2,080 characters)

Photo of jojox
5/5  rDev +15.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

I went here for their Russian River event, ides of March 2009.

My friend and I got there early, an hour before the bar was to open. The door was unlocked, so we opened it. The bartender/co-owner told us we were early, but if we were just going to wait outside, to come on in. The kegs weren't pouring yet.

Inside is a long bar, some two-top bar tables, and behind a half wall is a line of booths. Draft beer list is on two chaulkboards, I didn't see any bottles but who needs them with a list like this!
I was there for a special event, 7 Russian River beers on tap at the same time, but in addition to those there was a very impressive list of draft beers. Absolutely first rate selection, where else can you drink Pliny the Younger, Consecration, and FIVE other RR beers? Nowhere, to date, except in Santa Rosa CA!

Some words about the staff. I didn't get their names, but two women were working the bar, one of them apparently the co-owner. They were simply awesome. Not just fun to watch, but clearly beer appreciators and really hard workers. This event totally overran the bar, they were running out of glasses, kicking kegs, dealing with drunks and crowds. They kept their cool and rolled with the punches. I'm not trying to be a creep but honestly they were rather cute and really fit, too.

I would definately go back to Local 44 any chance I had. Unfortunately it's a bit far from me to be on my regular rotation but this experience was nothing short of awesome.

I didn't try any food. (1,502 characters)

Photo of slander
4.28/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Now, having fed the meter at the first place I went to only to find it closed for renovations, I want my goddamn dollar back. And I'm going to take it out on the city someway, somehow. Was thinking of heading back into Philly proper to pick up Randy a few hours earlier and leaving town (and there goes his tourist dollar, that'll learn you), but I'd have to hear his crap about cutting short his day of "heritage exploration", as he says. Or, as I'm over the river west, I can be reasonable and seek out Local 44; Memphis Tap Room's hot younger sister, new in town...

Corner place, new and kind of prettied up on the outside. Shiny laminated rounded "L" shaped bar seating about 18. A pair of handpumps on the bar and a row of unmarked tap handles below. Barback counter holds a bit of tiered booze on one end and to both sides of a center cash register, and some wines on the end. Neat mirrored wood unit above. Large flat screen over center, tap selections written on a long vertical board on the end, and glassware stacked and shelved below.

Windows tall & narrow with cranky handle open things, mostly up front but also to the side, separated by the old wood corner door with yellowish patterned glass inlays. Alternating sized wood plank floorings, and surprise old pressed tin ceiling, gold with crown molding, discovered & uncovered above a drop ceiling during space renovation. Score! Mostly brick red walls with black trim windows & doorways, and an olivey far wall with a large shout through above the bar tables there. A jukebox sits just alongside and past there, another renovation find; the unexpected pulley door opening into the side room. Framed vintage beer ads & larger framed pilsner glass prints. Exposed ductables above amidst drop bare bulb lighting over the bar, tracks spots inside and some sunken about. 3 raised roundy tables along the wall adjacent to the bar, 2 up front in the windows, and seating in the side room; a dozen 2-seat tables, in pairs mostly, some sharing common benchage, plus a couple of booths & a single raised table. Red walls, and cracked beige pressed tin ceiling with drop glass ball lamps on center. Framed Ferris wheel amusement park prints, a pair of large framed mirrors, and a board listing the tap selections there.

18 taps, a good mix overall. About 2/3 of them American micros, local (Sly Fox O'Reilly's Stout, PBC Kenzinger, Yards Brawler, Victory Prima Pils), regional (DogFishHead Raison D'Etre, Allagash White, Ommegang Hennepin) and beyond (Atwater Voodoovator, Bear Republic Red Rocket Ale, Elysian Immortal IPA, Stone Smoked Porter), and the remaining 1/3 a mix of imports Belgian, German and English (St. B. Abt 12, Bluebird Bitter, Franziskaner Dunkel, De Ranke XX Bitter, Kostritzer Schwarz, Fullers ESB, Maredsous 6).

Both handpumps up (Sly Fox Pale Ale & Troegs Hop Back Amber), and they serve just a single bottle, lovely Orval ('cause that's pretty much all you need). Orval, she's lovely. And unforgiving. Like the sea. Jack had written something to the extent of "By the time you're reading this, you'll have missed the Cantillon Lou Pepe". He was right and I ain't happy 'bout it. Damnit! I thought about a Brawler and I thought about a Red Rocket and I thought about a cask Hop Back, and then I thought, "What the hell are you thinking?" De Ranke, please, yeah, that's me, I'll have that (did not suck), so I had another just to show there's no hard feelings.

Pub grubbings, I ordered up the sticky wings. A short while later, someone came from the back walking towards me with a plate of wings but put them down in front of the guy sitting 3 stools down off the corner. "Okay", I thought, "Mine will be up soon". They didn't. About 2/3 of the way through his plate of wings, guy looks up at me and says "Hey, I didn't even order these but they put 'em down in front of me so, hell yeah". (Grrr!) I said, "I think you got my wings", and he laughed saying "Just kidding, I ordered mine like a minute before you came in". Bad form, and I'm glad he cleared it up quickly as I nearly impulse stabbed him in the neck with a Pilot Precise rolling ball V5 extra fine green pen. That being said, where are my wings? Seriously. Took some remindin' but I got 'em, they were tasty; sweet & spicy, topped with scallions and peanut dusted. Small but tight food menu otherwise, about ½ of which are options for those who unconscionably murder vegetables.

Dig the tunes (Smiths, Kinks, Neil Young, Bowie), I hit the jukebox (kickin'), to find these artists there but the songs I'm hearing not on the discs in the jukebox. Scratched my head and asked why they're playing from a mirroring playlist instead of directly from the juke itself. Ash said "I'm going to be for a while, I don't want to discover its secrets all at once". Excellent.

Comfortable corner bar. Good house. (4,850 characters)

Photo of Deuane
4.38/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Our first visit will most certainly not be our last!

A pleasant corner bar in the West Philly neighborhood at 44th and Spruce near Philly College of Pharmacy. The plain exterior hides the classy charm of warm wood and sleek metro style inside. A comfy space inside with the 15 ish seat bar greeting you inside the door and a cozy dining area off to the right partially hidden behind an open partition.

Arriving at the off time of 2:30 PM there were only a few other customers present so we had some nice conversation with Leigh who "just happens" to be the owner! Along with her husband Brendan they also own and run the Memphis Taproom in the east side hood of Fishtown.

Local 44 specializes in session beers and most of the 17 taps and 2 handpulls clock in at under 6.0%--with many being 5% or under. Half-pints are also offered....so one can get more beer without more alcohol! They offer but ONE bottled selection...that being Orval since it isn't available on tap.

Our service was outstanding with Leigh being a most congenial host that not only made us beer geeks feel welcomed but she also did a masterful job offering suggestions to folks that came in a bit confused with a bar that didn't have any BMC offerings.

Beers we enjoyed during our visit were:

* Yard's Brawler (a very light, tasty English Pub Ale clocking in at 4.1% ABV)
* Coniston Bluebird Bitter(Coming in at 4.2% ABV is one of the most outstanding representations of it's style and a beer that should be enjoyed on tap)
* Köstritzer Schwarzbier (at 4.8% ABV a tasty, awesome brew--the style benchmark)
* Elysian Immortal IPA (at 6.3% ABV a bit out of session range, but rather low for a west coast IPA)
* Bear Republic Red Rocket Ale (The indulgent selection from the list!)

Having eaten lunch earlier I skipped food but C enjoyed the tacos, which come in fish or tofu versions. C opted for plantain-encrusted mahi mahi with guacamole. A lovely app/small meal that was nicely presented and tasty.

The menu while small looked well thought out and mouthwatering.I am sure I will bring my appetite for the next visit.

Local 44 is a great addition to the West Philly bar scene. Prices were very reasonable for Philly....with most of the pints in the $4 to $5 range...with a few local offerings in the $3's!!

A nice place with good beer, good food and pleasant folks running the taps, what more could you ask for in "your" local?! (2,417 characters)

Photo of sholland119
4.2/5  rDev -3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

The newest place from the owners of Memphis Taproom, one of our favorite new bars. We could not wait to check it out since it is much closer to home.

Like MT, Local 44 has the feel of a cool corner bar. A medium sized u-shaped bar just inside the door has about 20 stools to go with a few bar tables and a dining room to the right. Reminds us of the Blind Tiger in look and vibe.

There are about 20 taps of high quality beer, with a strong emphasis on local products from Yards, Victory, Philly Brewing, DFH and Sly Fox. Some other US crafts (Allagash, Ommegang, RR Blind Pig) and some English and Belgian taps make up the rest of the lineup. One, yeah, one bottle selection (Orval).

I really enjoyed the comfort food emphasis. We had frito pie, one of my favorites, mini corn dogs and spinach croquettes. Like MT, the menu includes a fair number of vegetarian and vegan choices.

Service was attentive and friendly.

Can't wait to go back.

HV (947 characters)

Photo of Keith238
3.65/5  rDev -15.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Stopped in on January 10th.

Atmosphere was pleasant in the afternoon. Huge change from many moons ago when it was Murph's. Very clean and simply decorated.

Quality was very good. Food was fresh. Obviously the beer was as well, only open for a little more than a week.

Service was average at best. Only 2 tables were occupied and the second table wasn't even eating. Had to wait a while for our second round of drinks.

Food was very tasty. I had the mahi mahi taco's. While not quite what I thought I was getting, it was good and would order them again. My girlfriend had the Cuban sandwich... terrible. Also served to our table was the Greek salad, good compliments from my friend who had that as well as the burger, nice and fresh. Hand cut fries were terrific as were the plantain chips.

Prices were very reasonable considering the middle to upper middle class area and target customers.

Beer selection was good, not overdone. Sly Fox on cask was excellent. I would definitely go back. Good luck to the new owners! (1,022 characters)

Photo of ithacabaron
3.78/5  rDev -12.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 2.5

Solid, if not remarkable.

Beer outplays the food here -- there is a carefully constructed tap list, including several rarities (Cantillon vintages, etc.) and two hand pumps, most recently pouring the new Yards' Brawler, and eternal golden boy Victory Hop Wallop. A wide range of styles and countries are represented, and most beer is served in its "proper" glassware, always a nice touch; but it makes determining price-per-ounce value nearly impossible. Listing the serving size of each beer on the menu would be a nice touch. Even so, the prices seem reasonable. Additionally, printed copies of the beer list should be made available, as the two chalkboard lists -- right now the only way of telling what's on tap -- are not in the sight-lines of most patrons' seats.

Food is well-proportioned, but quite disappointing. The "asian" chicken wings, a large serving covered in a somewhat mushy, overly sweet glaze, end up somewhat cloying -- a good kick of vinegar, wasabi or Huy Fong chili-garlic sauce could really do wonders to create some balance in this dish. An extra minute in the fryer wouldn't hurt either. The hamburger, as well, is generously proportioned, but needs some sort of signature element (i.e. the famed Father's Office Onion Marmalade in Los Angeles) to really stand out.

All in all, most of the dishes I've sampled from the menu just need better seasoning and a good shot of butter. Additionally, most items on the menu are on the heavier side -- a nice chartucerie platter or cheese board would be appreciated for those that simply wish to snack.

Service is eager to please. Clearly, opening this bar has been a labor of love for these people, and it's nice to see such enthusiasm.

For all of the above complaints, in time, I imagine things will get honed in here, and a place like this is sorely needed in the Spruce Hill neighborhood. Goodness knows it's a vast improvement over the coked-out frat boy haven that it replaced.

For now, this place will win my regular business by default, although I'll still probably head over to Dock Street when given the choice between the two. Draw up a more educative beer menu, work on the food, and this could stand among the better of Philly's gastropubs.

A solid start. (2,246 characters)

Photo of Edgecrusher
4.33/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Atmosphere: Very nice place. Cozy and warm inside-perfect for chatting over a few beers with friends.

Quality: Very good. Very clean place. Beer was very fresh. Food quality was great.

Service: Service was great-very friendly wait staff and timely delivery of beer and food.

Selection: Good-about 20 beers on tap and 2 on hand pumped casks. No bottle selection. Food menu was limited-but that is probably due to just opening full time on the 2nd.

Food: Good-me and my fiance had the fries and corndogs. Both were good with the fries being some of the best we've had.

Overall a great place. Would qualify as a neighborhood bar. Very impressed with the overall efficiency of the bar considering it just opened. Can't wait to go back! (736 characters)

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Local 44 in Philadelphia, PA
95 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.