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Brauhaus Schmitz

Not Rated.
Brauhaus SchmitzBrauhaus Schmitz
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

45 Ratings
Ratings: 45
Reviews: 24
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: n/a
Taps: 30
Bottles: 92
Cask: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

718 South St
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19147-2023
United States
phone: (267) 909-8814

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @brauhausschmitz

Notes:
Place added by: GeoffFromSJ on 07-04-2009

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Ratings: 45 | Reviews: 24
Photo of Gavage
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%

This place will defintely put you in the mood to drink German beers and forget about those DIPAs dominating other bars. Plenty of brick and ligher colored woods create an inviting atmosphere. There is a second floor with some tables that overlook the first floor. German flags and other themed decor line the walls.

There were around 25 or so beers on draft here focusing on styles such as bocks, oktoberfests, gose, and weissebier. I ordered a bock and it came in a large mug which set the mood. I ordered the homemade sausage platter with some german potato salad and was in heaven. The food was delicious. The female bartender had a bubbly personality and was very friendly and knowledgable of the beers and food options.

This should be a must stop for any BA if you are visiting from outside the Philly area.

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.83/5  rDev -9.9%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.75

I stumbled upon Brauhaus while walking up and down on South street during a sweaty-hot almost-summer day while looking for apartments.

Went in for lunch and had a good time. The place is rather large and was pretty empty at around 1pm on a Tuesday. Not much of an atmosphere... the place looks new and sterile.

30 beers (20 front/10 back) on tap, all German. I've never seen a Deutsch joint with so many options: five different Hefes, three Goses, four Dopplebocks... plus more Goses and even some sours on the bottle menu.

I enjoyed the food- not your average German. Had a nice salad of kohlrabi, ramps and what not. The house-made sausages look promising. Service wasn't terribly warm but I'm used to it here in Philadelphia.

Photo of danz2323
5/5  rDev +17.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

This is a must go if you like beer. Excellent selection of drafts (majority german beers) with many various styles to appease everyone's taste. Bartenders are not only attentive but they know their stuff as well. No coors or bud even served at this place. If you ask, expect a glass of water....all in good humor, but there is a lot of truth said in jest. This place is the bees knees if you love beer. Stop reading this and just go now.

Photo of EBeckett3
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Open, almost barn-like inside, wooden tables, great bar. If it's German beer you want, here's the place for it. 29 beers on tap & 90+ in bottles. mostly German with a few Belgian & German-style worked in, e.g. Left hand Oktoberfest. I had the Hofbrauhaus Traunstein Oktoberfest & the Paulaner Hell at the Oktoberfest yesterday - very good indeed. Service was attentive, quick and pleasant. Wurst is outstanding. Rollmops. Spatzle. Schnitzle all first rate & great sides available too. A great addition to the community and they throw a great party. The 5th annual Oktoberfest was a blast with over a ton of pork prepared and served.

Photo of WunderLlama
4.3/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

A brief visit to Philly brought me to the steps of Brauhaus Schmitz. I was there very early (5pm) for dinner. Nice atmosphere with German travel posters and the Rheinheitsgebot posted on one wall. A classy bier Halle! They also earn special marks for being a soccer pub. Although there were no Bayern pennants, they had an Eintracht Frankfurt and Philly Union scarves.

Immediately greeted and seated. Very attentive and knowledgeable waiter( despite being a St Pauli fan). Very impressive beer list with some beers exclusive in the US only at BS. Tried the Andorfer doublebockhefeweizen. Interesting and very good. Order the tasting course and tried the following:

Sauerkraut croquettes. - very good with speck / bacon mixed with emmentaler cheese and sauerkraut deep fried into delicious nuggets

Goulash - absolutely sensational . I would come back just for this dish alone.

Jäger schnitzel - pork steak coated and pan fried, spatula and asparagus. The pork was too filling (typical German food reaction) , the spatula were good the asparagus was very good and reminded me of my Mothers recipe.

Appel Strudel- a thick delicious wedge of flaky pastry and apples.

This was served with a draft Hacklberger Humorator. An amazing delicious bock bier . Loaded with malty goodness and an earthy, fruit taste that reminded me of figs. Loved it and only on draft in the US at BS.

Very good food, excellent beers, excellent service, nice atmosphere (although early) . I recommend it and will be back the next time I am in Philly.

Photo of MsRif
3.73/5  rDev -12.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3 | food: 4.5

I've been here several times with friends and it is a pretty nice venue. The atmosphere is lacking simply because of the crowd that typically comes here, especially during soccer games. Pretty obnoxious and certainly not there to enjoy beer so much as chug it and enjoy being tanked during "the game." Service is excellent...the bartenders are fairly knowledgeable and helpful. Selection is pretty darn sub-par...obviously come here knowing that the draft selection will be German brews, and the bottle selection is meh. I basically come here for the kartoffelpuffer, the bartenders in dirndls and the interesting selection of German beer, when I feel in the mood for it...which is not too often anymore. For what this place sets out to be, I think it hits the mark, I just don't really consider it the best craft beer destination in the city.

Photo of Rifugium
3.95/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Located on South St. between 7th & 8th. Opened in June '09 and I stopped in for a visit on its first day. The place is beautiful, with a tremendous facade, and great atmosphere. Nice service, and waitresses in dirndls. Beer selection is great. Finally a truly great drinking establishment in the South Street area...it was well overdue. Lots of great German beers on tap, some of which you can't really find anywhere else in the area, and a wide selection for all over the world in bottles. Cuisine is good, mostly German, as would be imagined. Visit during Oktoberfest for an amazing time!

The one downside: TERRIBLE crowd, and it's just been getting worse.

Photo of tomthumbsblues
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Have gone here a few times with my girlfriend, the last being on New Year's Day. Setting is long beerhall with thick wooden tables and large booths. There is an illuminated copy of the Reinheitsgebot on one wall next to the bar. Waitresses wear dirndls in typical beerhall fashion. The German music playing in the background adds authenticity, but it's often too loud and makes conversation challenging.

Brauhaus Schmitz offers a wide selection of foreign and domestic beers available in a variety of sizes. I have gotten beer in a pint glass, a stein, and my favorite, a boot (Das Boot!). The last time I went I started my beer journey with a stein of Jever Pilsner and finished with a syrupy EKU 28. Both were memorable brews.

The food is traditional German fare, so a lot of sausages and meat, pickled fish and vegetables--all of which are surprisingly good! Some recommendations are the rollmops (pickled herring), the Obatzda cheese spread as appetizers. The laugenbrezel also comes highly recommmended, but we've never had it. The entrees are equally good with some of the ingredients, like sausages, being made in-house. The last time I went I had Schweinsbraten mit Dunkelbiersoße, which was roast pork served with a dark beer and mustard sauce. For desert, we shared an apple strudel and sample some schnapps from the Brauhaus's extensive offerings of this liquer.

Overall, prices are reasonable and waitstaff is helpful and eager to give recommendations. The food is great and they have changing specials. My only complaint, as I mentioned previously, was the music being too loud.

Photo of micromaniac129
3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Took the family downtown for some Christmas sites and stopped here for dinner.
At 5pm on a Wed. place was pretty empty.
Got a good booth watched a little soccer while listening to songs In German, pretty cool.
A nice beer listing but i thought it could and should be a bit better. Leans to wheat beers.
I did have a tall Jevers which was soft and mellow, and Schlenkerla Urbock.
Good.
My wife ordered a baked pretzel as an apptiezer and wienerschnitzell for dinner which got a big laugh from the kids.
It's a good place and would certainly go back again.
Ohh! and the barmaids are hot.

Photo of jjboesen
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

The recent Veteran's Day holiday provided an opportunity to spend a long weekend in Philadelphia. Brauhaus Schmitz was the first stop. The Brauhaus is situated in the blander section of South Street behind a somewhat nondescript storefront. Upon entry, you pass several tables to the well-polished bar. The room is dark and pretty narrow (and, at the time of this visit, very packed). The bar itself is clean and polished. Plenty of wood and brick ensures a convivial and comfortable drinking atmosphere - and perhaps some gemutlichkeit? Overlooking the bar area is a mezzanine level with additional tables for drinking and general merry-making. (Just pray that Begby* isn't up there with a pint or two.)

Obviously, the Brauhaus' several taps of fresh German bier was the primary reason for this visit, which included quaffs of Stoudt Oktoberfest, Hacker-Pschorr Oktoberfest and the very excellent Ayinger Celebrator. There is also an extensive lists of bottles (die Flascheliste) to further enhance your beer drinking experience - and even includes the infamous EKU. Other enhancements were the frequent rotation, correct glassware and some very attentive service. Of course, the Brauhaus offered up the usual suspects of German cuisine; I lunched on a pork sandwich with spatzle. Not bad, but not great. (What is the German word for "meh?") Nevertheless, I enjoyed the visit and would return in the future (die Zukunft).

* Begby is a brutish, drunken lout who appears in the film Trainspotting.

Photo of cevafm
4.58/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

The atmosphere was good. The lighting was a little dark and our table was a little wobbly, but there was a nice big TV next to our section that I watching the Phillies game on. Would have like to see a little bit more German beer culture represented in the decoration.

Quality was excellent. The table linens and silverware were extremely clean. I sampled one of the Bavarian "Big 6" beers that I have not tried yet, Franziskaner Weissbeer, and also had a 1/2 liter of Warsteiner Dunkel. The beer was fresh and the taps were clean.

Service was great. Only thing that prevented me from giving it a 5 was that the hostess was a little on the shy side so I could barely hear her. Our waitress was extremely helpful.

Selection was awesome. Didn't even finish reading the beer list as it was soooo long.

Food was very good. You can't find this food at too many places in Philly. Reading Terminal market comes to mind. As well as Miller's in Lancaster, but that's not in the city now is it.

Value was good. Most of the beers were priced around 5.50 a half liter, with some of the more exotic micro-brews pushing 8 a bottle. I felt it was reasonable considering the combination of food, beer selection, and great service.

Photo of bfree
3.55/5  rDev -16.5%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 5

As a resident philadelphian, tap lists do not usually impress me much...but this bar has an extensive list of german beers on tap.
However, the setup of the bar sucks if you are going to have a beer and not dinner. It is very cramped and not much seating at the bar is available. I have been there a couple of times including tonight, and this time the waitress actually made us get up from one of the booths because we were not eating, and this was at about 10pm so it was not really dinner time. Mind you, there was nowhere to sit at the bar and nowhere to stand as the bar is very narrow, but we were made to stand while waitresses walked back and forth, running into us every time. I have been here at other times when it was not as packed, but still had to deal with the narrow bar and people running into me constantly. This is not very authentic, as most german beer halls leave room to breathe.
I would recommend this place if you go there during the week for a good german style beer, but beware on the weekends.

Photo of mvanaskie13
3.93/5  rDev -7.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

As many of the other philadelphians have mentioned this is a welcome addition since Ludwigs has closed, and I finally made it in to check it out. Stopped in to catch the Bundesliga on a Saturday morning, a definite bonus of this place since many of the local pubs broadcast premier league games.

The atmosphere of the place seemed good, we were in a little early to see whats like with an evening crowd, but I feel a place that opens up for football can have its own atmosphere for that. Anyway, you walk in through the large double front doors into an open, airy seating area with bar to the left towards the back. Seating is mixed of booths and tables, with additional tables on a lofted overlook. I really like the setup and its cozy enough to give the feel of a more european setup while keeping with the narrow philly row style. The wood bar and amenities are great and the bar seating is very comfortable. We were there for nearly 2 hours and sat at the bar the whole time and did not feel uncombfortable at all. My only complaint is that the TVs are situated a little high for the bar seating.

Quality of the place was good, each of the two beers I had was well served and the food was delicious.

Service was alright, we sat at the bar and were served by the bartender. It wasnt really busy and he filled our orders in timely manner, but had to grab his attention a few times.

Selection was great for German beer on draft, and they even had a few Stoudt's on draft. It looked as though they had an extensive bottle selection as well.

Food was also very good. We ordered more appetizer type selections since it was early in the day, but each was well prepared and very good.

Value was very reasonable, the majority of the drafts were 0.5 L and all were <$6, while the food selections were appropriately priced.

Overall, a very good place that i hope to stop in to more often, for football, beer and food.

Photo of TheFightfan1
4.47/5  rDev +5.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

After my wife and I took a tour of Yards brewery. We drove down the street just for this place. Parking was great right in front of the building do to the snowy weather. As you walk in a curtain blocks most of the view of the restaraunt. We were greeted with sounds of a man playing an accordian right behind that black curtain. Bar is to the left stretching down the building to starcase and on the opposite side there are some boothes. Our table was upstairs and if you have been in this place the ceiling is not meant for us tall people to be walking up there. A little tight but never uncomfortable.

It took a little time for our server to greet us and take our order it was a Saturday and right around dinner time. Luckily we were able to get a seat in time as it did get very busy. Very nice to see all the waiter's and waitresses dressed the part as well.

Everything tasted like it was home cooked and very good at that. Food was a bit pricey but he isn't everything on South Street but it is well worth the money. An amazing place and a definite try if your in the area.

Photo of gos42
3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

Went to Brauhaus Schmitz for the first time last night. I'll be honest and say that I was impressed with the beers, but not so much with the food.

First the beers. With almost 20 beers on tap, mostly German or German style, there's something here for everyone. I started off with the Franzikaner Dunkle Weisse, which was both crisp and complex. Very drinkable. My wife enjoyed the Hefe--also quite good. I eventually moved on to the Kostrizer Schwarzbier with was fairly uneventful. Enjoyable, but nothing that I would write home about. Finally, I ended up with the Christmas Beer, which was both delicious and smooth. Had a nice closing of spice on the back of the tongue.

But the food is where this place falls apart for me. Started with a Laugenbrezel (pretzel) which was exactly what you'd want in a pretzel--and when combined with the house honey mustard was perfect. But at 3 bucks each seemed a bit overpriced. I had a Schweinsbraten mit DunkelbiersoSSe, described as Roast Pork rubbed with herbs and spices and served with a dark beer and mustard sauce. It was almost half fat. And the mustard sauce was bland and lacked any of the spicy flavor that mustard should have. Strange, because there were mustard seeds visible and crunchable--but no flavor.

My wife enjoyed the signature Hausgemachte Nurnberger Bratwurst and the pork, beef and cheese Kasewurst. The pork, beef and cheese was mild but more commercial than the housemade. But the Homemade Bratwurst was was tasty, with a strong caraway taste.

Would I go again? Definitely with a crowd. The tables and layout encourage seats of 6 or more while the serving staff have a good working knowledge of the beers. Would I go there to eat? Not again.

Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.69/5  rDev +10.4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.75

Brauhaus Schmitz is my dream come true. I anticipated that this place would have it all, and it does. The front doors open up completely to South Street and you will see a high ceiling, a long wooden bar and eclectic German wall hangings. Schmitz offers a great selection of beer, a wonderful traditional wood-laiden German beer hall look, and a large array of unbelievable German cuisine. Growing up with my mother and her family coming from the Father Country, I've been immersed in German culture and cuisine since I can remember. Brauhaus Schmitz offers authenticity and exceptional quality and presentation of the food and drink. If you enjoy German beer and cuisine, you will love this place. If you have never had German beer or cuisine, you need to visit this place as you will also love it. You can find cheese and meat platters, salads of sorts, and plenty of protein and carbs on the menu (wurst, schnitzel, spaetzle etc). Almost daily they offer specials in appetizers, entrees and desserts. With 30 beers on tap, you'll be sure to run into MANY German beers you either already love, or have never tried or heard of, in varying German styles. There is plenty of seating and some standing room. They have added a Brauer's Bund in the back to the right, which is a Brewer's Room, with a lovely flitch bar top and additional beer taps. Larger parties can reserve one of the two stammtisch (large tables) in either area of the restaurant. The service has been outstanding including highly knowledgable bartenders and friendly table service. I will continue to revisit Brauhaus Schmitz for the forseeable future.

Photo of corby112
4.7/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

Once I heard that there was going to be a new German restaurant/beer bar to replace Ludwig's I was pretty excited but once details of this place surfaced I had extremely high expectations. Brauhaus Schmitz met all of my expectations and exceeded them.

The restaurant itself is very narrow but is still pretty large, stretching pretty far back and with a second floor/balcony that has quite a few tables. Once you walk in there are two ailse of tables with an isle strecthing all the way to the back of the place with a very large bar and a massive copy of the Reinheitsgebot to the left. The atmosphere and vibe are very cool even though it is located on one of the busiest touristy streets in the city.

I've eaten here twice now and have to say the the quality of food and service are outstanding. Once I heard that the female servers were going to be wearing drindls I thought that it was going to be extremely lame but they actually pulled it off nicely. The servers have all been very knowledgeable and attentive, even helping me pronounce many German word that I otherwise would have no idea how.

I've sampled several of their authentic dishes and have been very pleased with everything. Brats, spatzel, Kartoffelpuffer(potato pancakes), schnitzel and potato dumplings were all amazing. I literally ate until I was uncomfortable on each visit.

Now on to the beer. Since this place is mostly focused on German beers they have a limited number of non-bavarian offerings. 20+ taps with 16 of them German, all broken down by style on the menu. They had several rarities as well including Hoffstetner Kunellbier and Erdinger Fest-weiss which are not common in the states. Other classics like Aventinus, Celebrator, Gaffel Kolsch and Weihenstephaner are always available. They also have a pretty impressive bottle list of beers from around the world but when I'm here I want German beers on draft.

I would strongly recommend this bar to any German beer enthusiasts and beer lovers in general. Even if you have friends that don't appreciate good beer they will enjoy this place.

Photo of fishtownhxc
3.6/5  rDev -15.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 4 | food: 5

glad i finally got the chance to check this place out....i've been looking forward to it for a long time. for the most part, i was very impressed. the food was top notch, and honestly, the best german food i've had outside of germany. chef jeremy nolen definitely makes the best kartoffelsalat i've ever had. i could probably just sit at this place and eat thirty pounds of this stuff. the hausgemacht wurst is great too, and the schweinshaxe i had was perfect right before i hit the phillies game. the beer selection is pretty untouchable outside of the absence of weihenstepher hefeweizen and dunkelwiess, which should, in my opinion, always be available at any independent german beer hall, especially in this country. they did have weihenstephaner's lager and kristal beers, but those are my least favorites by them, and this would be my only disappointment with their beer selection. i'm sure with some rotating taps even more great beer will see it's day at this place.

as for the service, i can't really say much of anything that would be positive. our server was pretty slow, and for the most part, i felt like she didn't even recognize that we were there. the food was a bit slow coming out, which i don't mind, especially with such a good beer selection and of course, the food was worth the wait. our server dropped/spilled my bottle of wurtzburger dunkelweiss and she didn't even bother to ask me if i wanted a new, fresh bottle. i'm not one for being a pain in the ass, and there wasn't too much beer missing, but she could have at least asked if i wanted a new one, or given me something on the house to make up for it. when we were done and ready to leave i think she walked by our table five times before she bothered to look at us and realize we done and ready to go.

outside of the service, this place is awesome. while i certainly wouldn't take off points for things like the music or seating, i really wish there had been a more communal seating option, like at the beer halls in germany (which i absolutely love because you tend to met some really interesting people), and the music was either to low in volume, or just didn't give off a beer hall feel/vibe when i could hear it. i'm sure the size of the place prevents a few things, but maybe in the future.

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Went here recently on a Saturday evening for dinner. Large wooden entryway really sticks out on south street. Got a table along the right wall, underneath a bunch of old pillboxes from the previous tenant. Lots of wood and exposed brick throughout, with a rather high ceiling in the main room. With the way the tables are up front and the way the acoustics are, it really has a beer hall type of feel.

Decent sized bar about 25ft from the front door along the left hand side that extends for maybe another 25ft. They had 20 tap lines with all beers served in appropriate glassware. They also had a bottle list, but I didn't even bother to look seeing as how the draft list was so good. There was an upstairs dining area that I did not have an opportunity to check out.

I had a Spaten Optimator and a Warsteiner Dunkel along with my jagerschnitzel and potato pancakes. Arguably the best potato pancakes I have ever had.

The service was a little slow in spots, but it sputtered along adequately.

I would love to make it back over here on a weeknight and post up at the bar for a bit. My first impression was very good though.

Photo of BeerDetective
4.25/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I wandered down to South Street for probably the first time in 5 years or so to check this place out. My flatmate and I were greeted by a carpenter's union guy handing out flyers hassling people. We ignored that dufus and went inside and had a wonderful time. Mhy weinerschnitzel sandwich was very very good, and the potato salad side was awesome. My non alcoholic flatmate even got an apple soda from Germany that was very good. I had a Franzikaner Wiezen and a Hofbrau Haus Dunkel, both of which were good and from clean lines. The restrooms were clean. Our sever was nice and helpful, and apologetic about the idiot outside with his flyers..all in all a place I am heading back to next week.

Photo of rfgetz
3.83/5  rDev -9.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Although the street it is on and neighborhood it borders are filled with your typical fake irish pubs and neighborhood dives, simply viewing the well designed wood, metal and glass facade lets you know your somewhere unique.

The beers are excellent. Most of which are very rarely ever on tap and available for $4-$6. Mind you this is the only German beer hall in the city at this point. About 20 different German brews on tap from your standard lagers to your Alts, Kolschs and Schwarz. The bottle list has some more German favorites but expands to a nice mid-level craft and euro macro list. You can even get your beer in a boot and rennact your favorite german beer movie.

The food is excellent, although slightly overpriced. I grew up with authentic German cooking in the family and the selection and quality do not disapoint. I just wish that $20 wasnt the low point for a platter involving sausage, pork or veal.

The place can get a little cramped and loud when crowded. The stmosphere is nice with German and beer themed decor. The waitresses in their "authentic" German dress add a little bit to the ethnic feel.

The service is definitely hit or miss. They have forgotten my food once, not told me they were out of something until otheres were served once, neglected to bring ordered drinks twice and we've been scoffed at for having a party of 5 sit at a table for 6 instead of offering to move and cram around a table for 4.

Based on the hard to find beers and excellent food, I will be back soon. I just hope this doesnt turn into another loud and raucus establishment for college kids to drink massive quantities of light lagers for cheap.

Photo of dwaz
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

A great dining German beer hall experience with good food and a well rounded draft list of German beers make this place exceptional. An extensive list of bottled beers from all over the world(Belgium, Kenya, Japan, Italy, etc.) will surely accomodate anyone, but the great German beers(sorely missing from Philly beer scene) are the reason to go here. Nothing quite like some German bratwurst, sauerkraut and Kolsch beer. The wait staff was friendly and knowlegable about beer. High ceilings make the atmosphere light and airy alng with the giant arch doorway,

Photo of GeoffFromSJ
4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Got here Thursday afternoon of the opening week in the early afternoon. I'm loath to make any review final, let alone one this early on.

From the outside of the hall to the inside, this place exudes a very cool vibe. Lots of wood, which would explain why the carpenter's union was protesting outside. We ate at the long bar.

Our bartender was great and we even had good interaction with another server. Granted, we were there during an off-hour. They give tastes, which was nice for my non-beer geek friends.

As for the selection, I didn't bother looking at the bottle selection. That said, Brauhaus Schmitz is off to an auspicious start. I had the Uerige Sticke, a schwarzbier, and the Aecht Schrelenka Helles. For a German restaurant, the selection is great and well-rounded. Except for eisbock, I think every major German style was represented.

The food menu looks good & interesting. I had the schnitzel sandwich, which was solid. But I think I should have gone for the wurst sandwhich instead. The fries were solid as well, and the ketchup seemed to had an interesting spice in it. Honestly, my impressions here need more sampling to be accurate.

After the close of Ludwig's, we needed Brauhaus Schmitz in Philly if we are to truly be the greatest beer drinking city in America. This fills a huge gap and is easily Philly's most important opening of 2009.

Update: 7-24-2009 They just had a Gose on-tap which is very rare. Given they are hitting major and minor German styles, as a German restaurant, they have to get a 5.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

The beer selection cannot be denied. 20 taps. Lots of good Germans, including some fairly unusual stuff. Also some good German-style American beers. Stoudt's does their house brew, and has a few others on tap, and Sly Fox has some footing in there as well. I was pleasantly surprised to find a Berliner-style Weiss on tap, and an Alt from Dusseldorf (Zum Urige). Oh, and Schlenkerla helles. Philadelphia has had a hole in it's beer scene regarding German beers for too long, and this should fill it.

The food is quite good, really fresh - and when we're talking about German-style foods, that's important. The food I had here was better than what I've had at Zum Schneider in NYC. I've given them good points for that. But at the same time, it is a bit expensive - such is South Street!!!

As for atmosphere, well it's clearly a new place, but they've tried to make it look old in spots. And it's not that they're trying to fool you, you can see the differences quite readily. It's just an interesting mix. The antique booths (old church pews) surround new wooden tables, and I love the exposed brick walls (here and there), and all of the wood. And they went to great expense to have the arched wood on the back-bar mimic the arched entranceway that they inherited from "American Pie". Very nicely done.

Ahh, I almost forgot the beer hall feel. Well, the old and new mix doesn't stop at furniture or finishings. When I first sat down Oom-pah music was playing! I thought I was in for an afternoon of tuba, but the next song switched to something really interesting and alternative. I'm not sure if that was because of the time of day or something, but I really liked the odd mix. A little German brass now and again can be fun!

As to the sound, the music is set up in a really good way. I'm not sure if that was planned, or if it just happened. The mezzanine gives it a lot of acoustics, and with the wooden floors the entire place acts kind of like a speaker box. It can get loud, especially when a larger table gets a few brews in them, but the music somehow still gets through. And on that note, it really does have a beer hall feel to it. There aren't the long communal tables, but it is kind of close, and it is kind of loud - and in my experience, that can be a good thing because it gets people talking.

So, overall impression, excellent!!! South street really needs a solid anchor along this block to keep it from shrinking more towards Front, and I think Schmitz has the magic to make that happen. And, as South Street is already a destination in Philly, I can't imagine anyone coming through town and not stopping in for at least one beer.

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Brauhaus Schmitz in Philadelphia, PA
94 out of 100 based on 45 ratings.