The Pub on Passyunk East

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The Pub on Passyunk EastThe Pub on Passyunk East
34 Ratings
The Pub on Passyunk EastThe Pub on Passyunk East

Type: Bar, Eatery

1501 E Passyunk Ave
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19147-6322
United States

(215) 755-5125 | map

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Added by NeroFiddled on 12-07-2006

View: Place Reviews
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Ratings: 34 |  Reviews: 19
Reviews by Soonami:
Photo of Soonami
4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

I went here one night after getting some Mexican food at Cantina Los Caballitos. The decor is dark and moody, that allows for a patron to disappear into a shadowy corner if they don't want to be disturbed on one of those days. The real star is the great tap bottle list that they have here: there is a good variety of styles from brewers making beer throughout the country and world. For my personal tastes, I liked that they had a couple bigger beers and especially some hoppy, less available beers like Avery Maharaja.

The bartender was very nice and patient offering suggestions to my companion and describing to her the beers that would be a good fit for her palate.

I did not have food, but friends say the burgers are food and they make good fried bar food.

 765 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of captainkrad
4.14/5  rDev -2.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of TeachChefs
4.84/5  rDev +14.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 5

Photo of mltobin
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4

Photo of scottbrew4u
4.29/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Dark lighting, fun beer centered decor, great bottle list, nice tap list(15+) and a neighborhood feel. This is a chill place to settle in for some good times with friends! A beer lover will have fun with the depth of selections. A bit out of the way but worth seeking out.

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Photo of Seer_One
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of FatRatPhilly
4.08/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of baybum
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of SpAiReArGsEonNE
4.48/5  rDev +5.7%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Photo of Lorianneb
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of razorsdescent
4.75/5  rDev +12%

Photo of soulcougher
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of Jame515
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of magnificent70s
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.94/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.25 | selection: 4.75

The wife and I stopped here before having an early dinner at Le Virtu down the road. Walking around Passyunk is fun, so many restaurants, bars and little shops… The Pub defies expectations.

It looks like one of those Philly bars where construction workers gather around to drink bottles of Budweiser, but in reality it is a dark, almost claustrophobic bar that plays Motorhead and old heavy anthems at full throttle and has a tap list that happens to be outrageously good.

The place was packed, tight and so dark. The low ceiling seems to be almost on the verge of falling over your head. The ambience reminded me of the heavy-metal I would frequent when I was a teenager.

But the beer. Oh the beer... how about Weyerbacher Insanity, Crème Brulee, Founders All Day, Nugget Nectar, Chouffe, Spring House Satan's Bake Sale, Glazen Toren Saison, Die Pedre Marcel… fifteen taps altogether.

Service was a little iffy. It took too long to get our beers, and the bartender refused to give me a half pour of Insanity and Brulee. Next visit I'll try to find some room at the bar (it was packed this time around).We didn’t have any food as we were headed to a fancy evening, but I saw some revolting-looking nachos on the table over from us.

Will definitely come back for the tap list! Also to explore the bottle list, which judging by other reviews seems to be rather excellent. Alas, our server did not offer me a bottle list...

 1,435 characters

Photo of InspectorBob
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of ColForbinBC
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of IdrinkGas
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of orangesol
4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Stopped in here earlier tonight for the 7th Anniversary Party. Not my first time at the POPE but it was my first time eating here, figured it is time to write up a review on it.

Every time I have come here the atmosphere has been good. It feels like you are drinking in a basement bar with tons of people from the neighborhood mixed with a bit of outsiders like myself. All of the events I have gone to here have been well run and moderately attended for some reason. Service has been pretty good on my visits. I have had to wait for some beers but for the most part it has been good. Quality is pretty high, they use correct glasses and offer solid food.

Selection has been solid on all my visits. They have all the bottles listed above the bar in chalk. You can definitely find some hidden gems on there if you look hard enough. Tap lists on my visits have been amazing, but there is usually an event going on so take that with a grain of salt. Got my first food tonight, a burger, and it was cooked perfectly and the side of fries were excellent. Prices are a little high on some of the bottles and drafts but all in all its pretty reasonable.

Overall an awesome neighborhood pub in the heart of south Philly. I have, and will return in the future.

 1,254 characters

Photo of Rifugium
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Wow, what a great place! It's not even 2 miles from where I've been working for 10 years, but I never knew about it until just recently.

I almost want to give this place a perfect "5" for atmosphere, and after a few more visits, I just might. Looks like the subterranean dungeon of some old medieval castle, though it is in fact completely above ground....and has a bar. Nice medium-sized bar as soon as you walk in, with lots of chalkboards showing off their selection. Decent sized rooms with plenty of tables, yet close enough quarters for a strong sense of intimacy. Service was just fine, with attentive bartenders, who knew their stuff, and who were willing to stop and chat about beer for a moment or two.

The beer selection was pretty great, with about 10-12 craft brews on tap, and a good quantity of bottles from all over the world, including some things that I rarely see even at beer gardens. The food was really good too. Not an extensive menu, and pretty cut and dry pub fare, but it was really tasty and not too expensive.

Speaking of which, half-price happy hour on everything on the chalkboard? Are you kidding me? I had three good beers, and a dinner-sized burger platter, for less than $20. Hello.

I definitely would like to frequent this place.

 1,268 characters

Photo of John_M
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Another high quality neighborhood Philly pub. What a shock!

Located just a few blocks from the Italian market, the POPE looks like any other neighborhood bar/pub, in this case located at the corner of Passyunk and Dickinson. As is typical in Philly, the only parking available is street parking, and I imagine it can be difficult to come by, depending when you drop by (on a Sunday afternoon around 4:00, I had no problems). So to no great surprise, the POPE has very much a locals, neighborhood vibe. The pub itself is fairly small, with a modest size bar one encounters upon walking inside (with maybe 10 or 12 seats or so). There are also several small dining areas in the back, as well as a back bar in the main bar area. The place is done up in dark wood, and has the look and comfortable vibe of a bar that has been around for a while and seen a few things over the years. On this particular Sunday, the POPE struck me as a very nice place to relax and kick back with a few beers over the course of an afternoon.

As for the selection, I thought it was pretty damn good. The tap list consists of 14 well thought out selections (supplication, heresy, incubus and hopslam, among other things), and then there were another 70 or 80 bottles selections (Fred, Adam, Houblon, Deus, etc), with the various styles listed. I ended up ordering 2 hopslams for $7 a pop, which came in a 10 ounce tulip (same size and price for supplication).

Service was pretty good I thought. My young bartender was friendly, quick and efficient. I got the impression he had a pretty good handle on the tap list (no surprise in Philly), and was happy to answer any questions anyone had (not that there was a lot of this - most of the customers seemed to be regulars and knew exactly what they wanted).

As for food, I got the chesapeake fries. They were quite good and came with a considerable amount of crab meat. In fact, everything I saw here looked pretty good. The guy next to me had ordered a cornbeef sandwich, and it looked (and smelled) so good, I almost switched my order.

Prices were generally pretty reasonable I thought (at least for the area). Most beers were in the $5 range for a pint, with more expensive beers like supplication, heresy and hopslam going for $6 or $7 in a tulip.

All things considered, I was pretty impressed by POPE, and wish to hell it was my neighborhood pub. Just another vivid reminder how high the bar is set in beer rich Philly.

 2,453 characters

Photo of coachdonovan
3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4


Having just come from Devil's Den, I'm thinking this place is the one that should have Devil in the name. Not that there's anything particularly scary about it, but it does come off as a little rough around the edges. Something to keep in mind if you're bringing the wife - I don't know if there is a second bathroom, but the one I used near the bar was not all that clean and one of the smallest I've ever seen.

I counted 14 taps, and the chalkboard list has either a goblet or pint glass for each. Nice, I haven't seen that anywhere else. PA beer was well-represented with Sly Fox, Stoudts, Victory and even Prism, but there was also Lagunitas, Hebrew, Stone, Fort Collins, Duck Rabbit. Fairly long bottle list that included some things you don't see every day, like Hair of the Dog Adam.

Like I said, this bar isn't for everyone, but I liked it. Sure, the music is a little loud and it's kinda dark, but the bartenders were friendly/helpful and the beers were good (and not overly expensive). This would be a good place for beers either before or after dinner.

 1,072 characters

Photo of macpapi
4.34/5  rDev +2.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

The P.O.P.E. is the type of bar that I wish were in my neck of the woods. Located smack dab in the middle of South Philadelphia--a couple of blocks from the famously over-hyped cheesesteak places, geared toward tourists like me--it has the feel of a neighborhood bar. That is if you expect your local watering hole to have a good range of top American craft brews and an apt representation of fine European brews.

The interior of the bar is dominated by a dimly lit atmosphere. Lots of wood, brick, and green and black-backed chalkboards accurately displaying both draft and bottle offerings. The walls are festooned with framed copies of Modern Drunkard Magazine, several beer signs, several vintage cans of local macro brews, a "My Other Car is the Popemobile" bumpersticker, and other beer miscellania. An unlit, antiquated fireplace is positioned to behind entry room patrons. These decorative touches offer conversation pieces and are sure to draw a few laughs as well. A decently-sized, flat-screen t.v. turned to sports is located above the front left corner of the U-shaped bar. There are a good 15-20 stools in the front room, around the wood-topped bar. To the rear are several tables. A loud mix of classic rock music from the jukebox adds to the POPE's generally unconcerned, unpretentious vibe.

There are about 15 beers on draft. Most are American crafts, with the emphasis on bigger beers. On my recent visit some examples of available brews were Hair of the Dog Blue Dot, Bell's 9000, Founders Breakfast Stout, New Holland Imperial Hatter, Left Hand Widdershins, and Port Mongo DIPA. A handful of locals help to complete the lineup. Stoudt's Gold and Sly Fox O'Reilly's Irish Stout, join Victory, Flying Fish, Penn Brewing, Weyerbacher and others in helping to support regional brewers. Bottle list, while not as extensive as some other places, still offers a good 100 or so foreign and craft domestic brews. These range from the usual suspects to more rare brews. All are at pretty decent prices.

Service has always been friendly and excellent. Being from out of town, I have appreciated the suggestions given by bartenders both for beers at their establishment and other places to visit. Always willing to talk, with absolutely no stand-offishness here.

On the whole, the POPE is one of my favorite beer bars to visit in Philadelphia. It may not be as well-known as some of the others, but is definitely worth the trip if you are looking for a no-frills, laid-back, and entertaining environment to enjoy quality brews. Thumbs way up here!

 2,562 characters

Photo of slander
4/5  rDev -5.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Late morning start on more Saturday Philly phun with a pair of Daves; one anti matter, the other negative reality (you decide which is which), and never the twain shall meet. Now all Luked up (roast pork with the broccoli rabe, oh yeah!) and looking for drink, I'm thinking some places down south in town I wouldn't reasonably get to to be gotten to. The short distance up is a seemingly long drive, timewise, block by block, each with its own stop sign for the hatin'...

Corner joint at the intersection of everything and nothing in South Philly, I easily muscled into a small parking spot out front that Ed will hate me for upon his arrival shortly. You're greeted by the length of an old worn wood laminate topped bar with a lip, "J" shaped hooking around the bend seating, I'd say, about 18 all around. Mother fucker! I'm just 3 sentences in and the Daves are riding me about the bar shape. Okay, it doesn't have the slight tail that makes it a capital "J", fine, so it's a fish hook. Witzel (dick!) offers up "more like an ornamental hook" and now (douchebag) Davo is starting with the camera. No appreciation for the art, even if I'm only a bullshit artist.

Shelved booze on glow rope strung mirrored panels on the barback; glassware on the counter and more booze below. Shelving at the end of the bar with stuuuff. Bottled selections broken out by style listed on Brewerania can linen horizontal boards running the length above. Other blackboards list tap selections showing glass serving types and pricing.

The décor here is well worn with lots of Modern Drunkard magazine covers framed, and a good amount of bits of things otherwise; framed b/w pics, brewery signage, mirrors, prints and otherings. Some stone wall blocks, yellow painted paneling, white stucco over brown panel lowers, brick & tile floorings, and black ceilings with fans & nipple lamps. There's a fireplace cut into the stone wall piece up front, and a CD juke alongside. Bar counters below the front and angled side windows adjacent to the bar seating 3 apiece. A single TV in the far corner above where the Weintraub twins from the Hollywood Knights are sitting.

To the rear, arched brick entranceways from room to room with matching stained glass panels fronting them, a bell for don't ring or you're buying a round, and a cannon mounted above. A shorty room to the left fronts the kitchen holding a few booths, with brewery neons in its thick block glass windows. The room to the right twice its length, holding roughly a dozen and a half 2 seat tables, some pushed together. Mounted lamps and big boards listing tap selections & food, drop cone lighting, and mounted trays on the back brick.

14 taps on a single tower on the bar. ½ of them local/regional (Yards George Washington's Tavern Porter, Philadelphia Pale Ale, Brawler & IPA, Sly Fox O'Reilly's Stout & Dales 10K, DogFishHead 90 Minute IPA), and the other ½ a mix of not local/regional to here anyway (Founders Breakfast Stout, Bells Amber Ale, Allagash Burnham Road, Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale, Left Hand Imperial Stout, Avery DuganA IPA), and a stray import (Blanche Du Bruxelles). And a Yards Old Bartholomew Barleywine firkin counterside on the end of the bar that has me thinking that we've stumbled upon a Yards event, uh huh. Started with a Yards George Washington's Tavern Porter and then had their IPA, both were fresh.

And bottles, that's right, bottles. Roughly 6 dozen of 'em, the list broken out by style. 42 US micros, 15 Belgians, 6 UK, 4 Germs & other beers of the world, some good selections here. (Lovely) Orval runs a big $7.50 and I've got to tell you, a Petrus Oak Aged Pale Ale for $6.50 does not suck. I do approve.

They went from Led Zeppelin Kashmir to some bad GNR and then I don't know what, but the music overall was the soundtrack of the uncool. Food being dished looked good but we didn't get to play. Beerwise, a good selection they seem to be rotating well, and some nice bottled offerings, I could do some time here. A comfortable enough place for a beer or three.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.84/5  rDev -9.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Went here during a mini SP bar crawl after hitting up SPTR.

Pope has a old time feel in atmosphere, not old like a wild west old, more like this bar has probably looked the same since it opened. A few beer signs on the wall and various pictures scattered around, brick and wood all around. A nice mix of loud music focusing on 1970's classic rock. This place was loud and moving, alot going on. A U-shaped bar where some seating is more comfortable and roomy than others. Two back dining room area's each with it's own beer chalkboard for your viewing pleasure. I was not a fan of the bathroom. Does everybody in South Philly have a tatoo?

My beers tasted fine, no quality control issues. Did not try the food so cant comment there, it looked decent though with big portions. Service was nice, the bartender was all over it without being overbearing. It was busy as hell in there so I could not strike up a convo. Hopefully the table service is good to since I plan to revisit.

A nice selection of beers on tap, nothing extraordinary or mindblowing but a nice rainbow of beer. It kinda mimicked the SPTR with a few selections oddly enough. Some locals, some from afar and I believe a Belgian. I had a Stillwater Stateside Saison and some HOTD Adam. The prices on bottles here are some of the most reasonable in the city considering this is a bar. They must have a good turnover because of this. Not alot of huge gems in the list but a good representation of all things beer. A nice selection of Hitachino beers as well.

I will be returning here soon. Perhaps during Beer Week 2010 for their HOTD event which should be great.

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The Pub on Passyunk East in Philadelphia, PA
Place rating: 4.24 out of 5 with 34 ratings
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