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City Tap House

Not Rated.
City Tap HouseCity Tap House
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

32 Ratings
Ratings: 32
Reviews: 17
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: n/a
Taps: 60
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

3925 Walnut St
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19104-3624
United States
phone: (215) 662-0105

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
Place added by: stingrayvr6 on 05-13-2010

No notes at this time.
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 32 | Reviews: 17 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Soonami:
Photo of Soonami
4.43/5  rDev +11%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

6/28/10 Update:

I talked to the general manager of the bar/restaurant yesterday when I returned and he was very nice about addressing the main problem that I had and expressed in this review.

The beer listings give the serving size, so you know exactly what to expect for what you pay for. I understand this is a huge new restaurant, with a lot of staff to train, but we still got the wrong pour of a beer my date order (10 oz tulip of <5% Left Hand Sawtooth ESB instead of a pint) I told the server about the mistake and it was instantly corrected. I hope that this is something that they can figure out and with 60-70 beers on tap, mistakes are bound to happen. The serving size/pricing issue was my main concern and it seems like that is being rectified.

Talking to the manager, he was very excited about upcoming events where they will invite brewers host themed nights and have other educational program, which I think is a fabulous use of the enormous space. Hopefully, the establishment will prosper as it hits its stride. There is a lot of potential with City Tap House.
___
This new West Philly bar has a lot going for it. Located just off Penn's campus it's an easy walk from class or work for the tens of thousands that find their way onto to campus everyday. You enter by either walking up the steps in front of the Radian Apartment complex or use the elevator accessible on the ground level next to Jimmy John's and Capo Giro.

When you first walk into the tap house, you will see an enormous bar, that could sit 50. The bar offers several beer flights, like locals, imports, hoppy, etc, which will be great for the uninitiated, but for the beer advocate, it is a pedestrian selection. The bar has about 60 beers on tap at any given time and will often have special events where they will give a brewery all the taps they want. For instance, during Philly Beer Week, Bell's had 31 beers on tap!

The food at this bar is quiet good and they offer a diverse selection of pizza, burgers, and casual dining options. The specials sound interesting too, like roast suckling pig on Thursday.

This bar is not perfect though, I have a few complaints. First of all, the beer is far too expensive. Most of the beer pours are 10 oz, but the glasses could fit at least 12 or 16 oz, so they often give you a glass of beer that looks half full, but you pay the same price or less for a full pint elsewhere. Case in point:
Yards Brawler, ESB and Pale Ale are all $5.50 for 10 oz! However, they will also pour you 10 oz of Avery Mephistopheles for $7 also...The food is also slightly more expensive than other beer bars, like a $12 burger or $13 individual sausage pizza. Although the bar has 60+ taps, a lot of the selection are just average beer, sure I had Bell's Batch 9000 and Expedition Stout, Pliny, and Mephistopheles, but most of the taps are nothing special.

I would go again for a special event, but normally, I think it's just a bit over priced and not worth my hard earned dollars. Given the choice, I think Local 44 is a better choice, the servers are more attentive and the tap list, though smaller, is better edited. The huge bar and dining room does make this a great place to take a large group and they take reservations

More User Reviews:
Photo of LehighAce06
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Photo of baybum
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Photo of Jason
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Photo of roan22
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

Been here many times, probably my favorite bar in the city. Familiar neighborhood to me. I like City Tap House because they frequently have Deschutes beer on tap or other west coast breweries that are hard to find on the east coast. Also I like the bar its very spacious and the service is good. The food also is great. On special brewery takeover nights or beer week brewery special events, its always a fun time. We love Andy the owner, one time he gave us beer glasses from New Belgium Brewery with bikes onthem that I just love. Tonight we had the Mezza plate, chicken and waffles and beer from Hardywood Brewery. Just an awesome place. They also have an outdoor area with firepits that you can sit around. Cheers!

Photo of tkdchampxi
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.55/5  rDev -11%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

Beautiful summer day in Philly, breezy and relaxed. Perfect for a bike ride, and a little exploration of University City- a neighborhood I rarely explore. City Tap is located in a busy street deep in the colleges, and within a modern apartment building. You can access it via an elevator or climbing up a bunch of strangely-shaped concrete stairs/steps.

Once you get to the bar, it is surprisingly large and very modern, but it looks more like a nightclub than a bar. It's got none of that coziness you expect from a beer-centric bar. The wraparound bar is gigantic, there are flat-screen TV's all over broadcasting sports and the vibe is just "off".

I did enjoy the terrace, though. You can order a beer from the bar and sit outside overlooking the street and the college buildings. I bet it would be a good place to watch a sunset.

The selection is typical of this massive beers touting dozens of beers: huge but disappointing. The menu is divided by styles (wheat, fruit/wild, porter/stout, brown/barleywine) and there are between five and fifteen beers for each niche. There are a ton of some styles (IPA's) and there are none of other styles (barleywines).

Some highlights from the menu are RR Damnation, Allagash Tripel, Deschutes Hophenge, BFM Square Root 225. Nothing too crazy, though, and only two stouts (no imperials).

If you're going to flaunt 65 taps and that you're all about the beer, then you ought to do better. That is all.

Photo of soulcougher
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

Photo of Budinetz
4.51/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.75

Very good value for the price! The staff was phenomenal and the food was fantastic. The only downside was that a large group had been booked in that took over the bar and most of the outside for a private event during happy hour. The list was also not updated accordingly, however the bartender informed us upon arrival that Philly beer week was upon them and this was the reason for the low stock. This is understandable and we appreciated the heads up. Very interesting style of pizza! Both the goat cheese pizza and the BBQ pulled pork pizza were awesome. Definitely pay a visit to this place...worth the trip.

Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of baconfromwalmart
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of JohnParadee
4.75/5  rDev +19%

Photo of InspectorBob
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of JKWBMH
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

Photo of jackrodgers77
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of msimone372
3.64/5  rDev -8.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.5

City tap house typically has about 30-40 beers on tap. The only problem: the last 4 times I went in the first THREE beers I requested were out. And after that point I requested several other beers that were out!

Besides that I really enjoy this place.

Photo of oglmcdgl
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of Necropsy
3/5  rDev -24.8%

Photo of Thirsty2383
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Located on the second floor of a commercial complex, this place is large. A huge bar that houses 60+ taps and easily that many seats with glass along one side that overlooks a patio area with fire pits. Beyond the bar area is a good sized dining room and open kitchen.

Top to bottom, everything I have had here has been really good. I've had a couple of the pizzas, a handful of the apps, and s few entrees. All have been satisfying and portion size is perfect.

With over 60 taps, they have a wide range of each style on tap. The beer menu groups everything by style and usually offers a mix of harder to find stuff and common examples. I've stumbled upon many a rarity here.

A great place to watch a game too. They have many TV's in the bar area making it easy for you to follow along wherever you are sitting.

This place is in my regular rotation.

Photo of Dennycurr
3.71/5  rDev -7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I've only been there 3 or 4 times----in the afternoon, on weekdays, so, take this review for what that is worth.
I was one of a few customers there, every time I went. Naturally, the service was good.
I definitley like this place.
Plenty of selections. ALL draft. I basically only drink Belgian or German beers but I have branched out to experimenting with these up and coming good American beers, when I can find them. This place looks like the place to be able to fulfill those experiments and if I don't see any of those, I can sink myself into a DRAFT of a good Belgian, (of which they always have a few----but---only a few), or---one of their staples, Aventinus, also on draft
The next time I'm going is around the beginning of March. I was told by the very friendly bartender they are having a "BELLS", event going on that week. All kinds of beers from that brewery.
See?....that is the kind of thing that I would dabble with, when not drinking Belgians.
This is the place that will do things like that.

Not a big fan of all the space, in, around and up, surrounding the huge bar. It doesn't seem cozy. Seems more industrial. Especially, when it is empty like when I go in there.
The outdoor patio looks inviting, when it would be crowded. One would be looking down on Univ City.
That this place has 12 reviews in BA, already, since it has only been open for a short time-- speaks volumes.
This is a rare find in Univ City.

Den

Photo of Rifugium
4.04/5  rDev +1.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 3.75

Located in the college district on 40th & Walnut in Philly. I visited first when it was essentially brand new (May 2010). Nice place with an outside/rooftop dining area. It's more on the modern/hipster side as far as atmosphere goes, but there's still a remnant of rustic air about. Good big bar with a variety of beers on tap...they have the capability to have at least 60 different draughts at any given time. My first visit occurred during Philly Beer Week, and there was a Bell's event going on, with over 30 Bell's brews on tap, which obviously gave me a great first impression. EXTREMELY busy it was, however, the bartenders and servers were amazingly on the ball, and it was actually astounding to watch. Recommended!

Photo of pdeepak
4.78/5  rDev +19.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I frequent City Tap House a lot, as I live a block away.

I love this place! Great selection and service, the few times I have encountered even a small problem, all I have to do is mention it and it is fixed immediately.

The food is excellent, if a little bit on the pricey side, especially now that they have increased the prices by about 15-20%. I have heard great things about the mussels, the sausage pizza is great and the chicken press sandwich takes the cake.

Obviously, the beer is the key component here. They have new kegs that rotate on as old kegs are killed and every Tuesday they have a bunch of new kegs ready to flood the pipes. I have had some really rare brews here, the Abyss and Black Butte on tap among them, as mentioned by another reviewer. They also had the Ommegang Cup O Kyndnes which is a one off!

They have had several events related to promoting beer awareness including a huge craft beer tasting event over the summer of 2010. Sixpoint and Avery have also come into the bar to hold tasting sessions and seminars.

Lastly, they do growler pours which vary in price depending on the original price/size of a single serving of the beer. If you are on foursquare, every 10 check ins nets you a free growler! fantastic deal!

Photo of LordAdmNelson
3.7/5  rDev -7.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Stopped by this place near UPenn while visiting Philly. Good atmosphere, chill and classy, though not stuffy or fancy or anything. They've got a ton of taps with generally pretty good stuff, though the selection is not as exclusive as I might like. A little heavy on the pale Belgians (wits, pales, etc.), which is fine, but not exactly what I was in the mood for. Service was largely responsive and quick, though one of the bartenders told me that the reason why my Tripel Karmeliet tasted like movie theater popcorn was because I had let it warm up too much. He worked with me and gave me another beer, so props to him for that, but I'm almost sure it was a dirty tap line. Not a huge deal, happens to all bars, I guess. Not too expensive, most beers are in the $6-8 range. Fun place.

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City Tap House in Philadelphia, PA
90 out of 100 based on 32 ratings.