The Bishop's Collar

The Bishop's CollarThe Bishop's Collar
The Bishop's CollarThe Bishop's Collar
Bar, Eatery

2349 Fairmount Ave
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19130-2515
United States

(215) 765-1616 | map

View: Place Reviews | Events
Reviews: 22 | Ratings: 32
Reviews by GnomeKing:
Photo of GnomeKing
3.68/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5

There were two Heineken girls in thigh-high boots and tight tees there the night I went, but they ignored me because I was sipping a Double Daddy IPA, a Blue Point Toasted Lager, and then a Hop Wallop. The girls' scam was to find a guy drinking Miller Lite or the like, and then say, "I see you're drinking Miller Lite, we'd like you to try Heineken Lite." I would have liked some attention from the beer chicks, but my beers kept me company...there are some interesting choices here--Blue Point and Speakeasy aren't brewers that get distributed much around Philly, so I was happy to see them on the chalkboard. The overall selection is small, though, and the quality isn't earth shaking. 3.5s for both.

The food is cheap and good. The menu is somewhere between bar food and bistro crab crakes, nachos, spring rolls, turkey sandwiches, etc. My friends and I split a few appetizers, and they were all very good. This is not a place well-suited to having a relaxing dinner (see talk of crowds below), but nibbling on some appetizers works.

Lots of grad students and mid- to late-20s singles hang out here. It gets pretty crowded, sometimes bumpin' elbows crowded. If you want to sit down and relax, go right up the street to Bridgid's.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of TeachChefs
4.86/5  rDev +20.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 5

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

This is one of those bars I've been hearing about ever since I moved to Philadelphia... it took a trip to the nearby Eastern State Penitentiary to finally get me there.

At the end of Fairmount Avenue near the Art Museum, on a corner. The classic Philly corner bar. Small and cozy, the bar first, then the dining area. I've seen it a gazillion times, it always works. Nice bartenders, locals watching the game and a more-than-solid tap list.

We sat outside at a table on the sidewalk on December 28, 50 degrees out. Damn!

They have frequent events- a Ninkasi tap takeover had occurred recently and they had a bunch of their beer on tap. I was there for Founders Big Lushious, one of the few bars in Philadelphia to have it. Good stout but a little too sweet.

At seven bucks a pop, this is a bit more expensive than the joints I'm used to in South Philly. But then again Fairmount is oh-so-nice and preppy.

I'd hang in here if I was a neighbor. And I'm sure I will stop by again if I'm around the prison or the museum, or for a beer event.

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Photo of RPH2327
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of Lorianneb
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of Getalegup
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

Photo of soulcougher
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of
4/5  rDev -1%

You visited this place. Write a review.

Photo of scottbrew4u
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of Rifugium
3.81/5  rDev -5.7%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.75

Located in the general Museum area, Bishop's Collar is in a good place for craft-beer-bar-hopping outside of Center City, with Brigid's and Belgian Cafe not too far away. But it can stand alone for a good night out as well. The place is not that big, with a bar that holds maybe 10-12 people, and some standing and sitting room, which can get cramped during busy hours. Pretty basic layout, nothing extravagant going on here.

Beer selection is generally pretty good, with a decent line up of local and micro standards. They tend to get some good events that generally fly under the radar. I popped later in the day after a Pliny the Younger event to find Hopslam and Sculpin still flowing easily.

Service is generally fine, though I tend to notice that some of the bartenders may spend a little too much time chatting with their buddies and regulars rather than tending the whole bar. It's to be expected in a place like this.

Food is basic pub grub, but everything I've had has been decent. Prices are about the average overall.

I wouldn't exactly call this a must-visit bar, but if you find yourself in the area looking for something to do, Bishop's Collar is a solid option.

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Photo of JMFP
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of InspectorBob
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of CuriousMonk
4/5  rDev -1%

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

Swung by here based on the tap selection. I have been wanting to check this place out for a while, but I am very rarely in the art museum area.

A relatively simple setup inside. Narrow room, bar along the right and table area in the back. Nothing elaborate, except for the bobble-head collection running along a shelf above the bar.

Tons of philly sports teams represented through pictures, pennants, etc. Not scoring any brownie points from this NY sports fan, but I can appreciate the dedication.

The tap list was about 12 deep and included Pliny the Elder, Bell's Two Hearted, Deschutes Black Butte, Chouffe, and a couple of Allagash's. I went for the Pliny and followed that up with a Two Hearted. The bottle list was small, but they had some heavy hitters.

Service was on par, no real impressions either way. A solid neighborhood bar.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.65/5  rDev -9.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Stopped here after a tour of Eastern State Penitentiary for food and a few beers. Standard city bar, narrow with the bar to one side and tables further back. Jukebox and crowd at the bar made for a noisy atmosphere.
Beer selection was about a dozen beers on tap, and about an equal number more in the bottle. Mostly american craft, with a few Belgians. I had glasses of Troegs and Victory, as they we the only stouts on tap. Prices were good for the city.
I had a very good flank steak sandwich, and every else said their food was good too. Service was about average.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.83/5  rDev -5.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

The bar looks like your standard, corner bar with misc. beer related decor strewn throughout the hasnt-been-updated-since-the-50s furniture and fixtures. A few TVs and a jukebox are the only things that make it feel modern. The taps at times can house a majority of macro crap along side average local product but strewn throughout is a minimal selection of high-grade American craft. Hit or miss, so check before you go whats available - a little bit of an identity crisis.

While the crowd is commonly diverse and local, on weekend evenings, the place also appears to cater to the post-college douchey crowd who yearn for days long passed. The food is decent bar food, nothing much else to be said about it. The bar tenders are topnotch however and always do a great job. I have a love hate relationship with the place, but come back a few times a year.

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Photo of John_M
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Missed the Larry Bell event the preceding Friday, but stopped in after the Philly Craft Beer Festival on Saturday afternoon. They had run out of the Hop Slam (naturally), but still had on tap 8 other beers from Bells, as well as something from Yards, the white rascal from Avery and Guinness. So the tap line-up was still pretty solid and was augmented by some interesting bottles listed on the blackboard over the bar.

This place is incredibly popular and was filled to overflowing even at 3:00 on a Saturday afternoon. The place is not all that large to begin with, looking to be a converted row house with a long narrow bar running down the right side as you walk in from Fairmount Ave. There are some tables and chairs in the back as well, but not a lot. So I'm thinking it wouldn't take much for this place to feel pretty crowded (as it did the afternoon I was there).

The vibe is pretty comfortable here, with a couple of flat screen TV's, an array of knick knacks and other decorations, and a number of bobblehead dolls behind the bar. Feels like a good place to hang out and have a cold one.

Service was very good the day I was here and the bar tender was on top of the tap list. She was quick and efficient, and I give here extra points for having me taste the Bells Cherry Stout before ordering a glass. She noted that a number of patrons had been put off by it, though she didn't think it was spoiled. In any event, I appreciated her thoughtfulness, all the more so as I wasn't happy with the Cherry Stout after all either.

As for food, I just ordered the wings. While nothing special, they were still pretty good and were quite meaty. What was surprising was the price. $5 for 10 wings? Been a while since I've seen that kind of deal unless it was happy hour or they were on special.

This is a solid place. I'd certainly go back.

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Photo of corby112
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is a really good neighborhood beer bar in the Fairmount section of Philadelphia. Can be overcrowded with a lot of jocks in there but there are about seven or eight outdoor tables weather permitting. I would say that about eighty percent of the building is taken up by the bar area. In the back there is a small dinig section with about four tables/ wooden booths. The food is above average pub fare, offering very good appetizers and burgers/ sandwiches. The beer selection is also quite good, featuring local craft beers, west coast micros and imports. The last time I was here they had Pliny the Elder on Tap.

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Photo of slander
3.86/5  rDev -4.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

On the move again, trying to keep to that loose lack of a schedule we don't have if we're going to make lasagna night in Queens later (so not happening). Just picked a few places to see, nowhere near each other; scattered about in the corners of here and there. I kind of enjoy this town while Dave does not, that which makes horse races. I'm getting somewhat slightly almost noticeably not better at navigating Philly without a compass now, and am easily staying within the boundaries of the rivers. So, up on Fairmount now, the neighborhood's gone gone again...

Little suspect stand alone bricky place awninged up on the corner. I wonder lots of stuff, like what used to be attached or next to it and where they've gone; they don't just build onesies like this. 8 tables outside run both sides of the corner for seasonal seating, see. Inside, just to the right, something different, a strange "Y" shaped wood bar, being a straight bar with an angle on the end and a piece jutting out. Foot rail below, I take notice of them in bars now, I didn't always did but my dogs get a-tired when there's nowhere to foot 'em.

Barback is shiny mirrored old stainless steel unit, with booze over mirrors and a chalkboard running the length above listing food (salads, soups, apps & sandwiches), bottles & tap selections in colored chalk. Phillie's bobbleheads & figurines line bordering below the boards on one side, nic nacs, figurines, plaques, and pics on the other side. Baby track spots above the boards, and mounted flat screens in both corners. Glassware and 3 tiered booze below the bar back.

Red painted walls, trim & molding against a beige ceiling, slab marble tile floors, sunken spots in the molding above, and spinning fans. Pub signage and neons, and Halloween décor just now. A bench to the left just inside the door, a bar counter on the window just past there, and a CD juke sit adjacent to the bar. Shaking through, 8 tables on church pew seating in a step up room to the rear, with some art, a large Guinness mirror, and some beer signage.

12 taps on a single tower on the center of the bar. Some local Pennsylvania wares (PBC Kenzinger, Yards Philly Pale Ale, Sly Fox Black Raspberry Reserve, Yuengling Lord Chesterfield Ale), some regional micros (Fisherman's Pumpkin Stout, Allagash White), some irregional micros (Russian River Pliny the Elder, Green Flash Hop Head Red), a few fantastic imports (Delirium Tremens, Stella, Guinness) and a cider (Ace Perry Cider).

Also a dozen bottles listed on the boards above, a small collection of mismatched micros (Moylan's Hopsickle Impy IPA, Bells Two Hearted Ale, Hoppin' Frog Bodacious Black & Tan, Pennichuck Engine 5 Red Ale, Fisherman's Brew, DogFishHead Theobroma), a few Belgians (Chimay Red, Westmalle Dubbel, Urthel Hop-It, Sara Buckwheat Ale), and imports from somewhere (St Ambroise Oatmeal Stout, Hitachino Sweet Stout). I also spotted some other random bottled selections in the stickered cooler fridge down past the bar (Anchor Steam, Sam Imperial Pilsner, Victory Hop Devil, Guinness, Magners, Lindemans Framboise).

Um, Pliny please, perfectly pretty no brainer, huh. Beer was what with being damn tasty and all, no surprise, and seemingly well kept. Not a happy girl bartending. It very well may have been the too many goddamn "Philly bar crawl 2008" kids here drinking Twisted Tea, but I cannot say for sure. No, I can say for sure. And so goes the crowd here today on their amateur day crawl, but we are not deterred. All that aside, kind of edgy yet not uncomfortable in any way, it's a good little bar, and Pliny, too.

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Photo of BWH3
3.88/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Went to this pub last night for the first time. Dank, somewhat dingy bar long and dark with seating in the back for eating or drinking. Place seems to be mostly locals from the neighborhood. Crowd young, loud and boisterous watching some of the 76ers game. Beer selection and quality are nice. I had Bells Best Brown and St. Bernardus Christmas. Other than their homage to Guiness, the selection is pretty diverse and contained a mix of local, domestic, and foreign. I deduct a few points from quality because the St. Bernardus was served way too cold. Waitress did not really know much about the beers when my friend asked. Food came out at an appropriate time but was a bit cool. All in all the food was tasty and plentiful but nothing remarkable or fancy. I would say the Bishop's collar is a good place to stop if you are in the Farimount neighborhood or are looking for a change of scenery, but this is hardly a destination for serious beer advocates.

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Photo of Seanibus
3.63/5  rDev -10.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

The inside atmosphere is dank and not entirely pleasant, but the outside seating is the best in the area. The food and service is highly inconsistent, but good more often than it is bad. The appetizers are usually a better bet. The Sunday brunch is a big avoid. But the beer list is outstanding - a dozen well-considered selections, with a decent balance of style and geography, though it is often heavier on IPAs. The owner goes out of his way to find interesting and unusual beers, and often he has a keg or two of something red hot in the beer press.

This should be a stop on the itinerary of any beer lover.

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Photo of cobalt60
4.14/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

we stopped here for a quick one after a Sunday afternoon visit to the Perlman building, part of the Phila Museum of Art. It's a block up the street! on the boxes..nicely buzzing crowd. Loitered a bit looking over the beer chalkboard behind the bar.
Quickly noticed by the barman & got a couple of draft St Bernardus brown ales. A really nice selection of about 10 drafts (i think 4 belgian) and as many bottles. Some folks behind us made us room at the standee board by the window.
Very impressed by our short visit & will go back.

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Photo of monkeybleu
3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

I dropped by my brother's new place in the art museam area of Philly. Needing a good dinner, we walked to Bishop's Collar. Figuring it to be a standard neighborhood bar, I was a little suprised to walk into a crowded place on a Sunday night...The outside seating was full too.

So we sat at the bar and found a small, but very impressive selection of brews on tap and in the small cooler. After a day of skydiving, nothing sounded better than a La Chouffe on draft. There were also some of the standards- Bass, Guinness, Stella...truly something for everyone. In the case was a nice variety of other bottles.

Upon being seated for dinner, they present their menus in children's books. The selection was fairly basic, lots of salads, exotic burgers and sides. Nothing too pricey. The food was pretty good, although nothing wonderful, but an excellent value. Service was friendly.

The atmosphere was very inviting. A comfy bar. Inside seating for perhaps 25 people and more tables outside.

All told, a very comfortable place, a nice crowd, good food. Despite the smallish beer selection, what they have is far superior to most places...truly something for everyone.

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Photo of wyllder
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Visited Philadelphia over the weekend to see the Dali exhibit. Upon arrival we had a couple of hours to burn and decided to wander around the museum area in search of a bar.

We were pleasantly suprised when we stumbled on Bishop's Collar and noticed the small but high-quality tap selection. Several Belgians including LeChouffe & St. Bernardus were on the menu.

The atmosphere was small and cozy, and the service was friendly.

We ate outside, and the food was better-than-average pub-grub.

Overall, a truly nice little gem and I would recommend it to anyone in the museum area looking for some good food and beer.


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Photo of woodychandler
4.43/5  rDev +9.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

I had the opportunity to stop in last Sunday on my way home from Brewtopia, although I had been meaning to search out the place for a while, based on the recommendation of the proprietor of Home Sweet Homebrew.

It is located right on the corner of 24th and Fairmount, up near the Museum of Art and corners are often the best locations for bars, due to their visibility to customers and the way that their situation can be used for maximum effect. The Bishop's Collar does a great job with their placement by making it light and airy inside with five windows and two doors for plenty of access and visibility. Heck, we were so visible that I waved to a double-decker bus full of passengers as it passed by. They also have several ceiling fans going to keep the smokiness to a minimum.

The first thing that I noticed upon entering was the very interesting Y-shaped bar, especially since the branching of the "Y" is just inside of the door. I also took note of the many European beer tin advertising signs, including an especially coveted (by me) La Chouffe. Behind the bar is an eclectic display of Phillies bobbleheads, Philly sports personalities, and monks. I am also desirous of the painting depicting the laughing friar and be sure not to overlook the Lego monk (!). There are also some photos of the owner and his son in Steelers garb, as well as a street sign proclaiming "Steelers Way", proving that there is still hope for good taste in Philly. Above the bar is a long blackboard, on which all of the offerings are listed, including food. It is a brilliant way of doing business and puts me in mind of a beer bar that I visited in Amsterdam several years ago. Heading aft and up a short step is a restaurant and dining area and beyond that, a short flight of stairs that leads down to the Men's head.

They had a wild selection of beers on tap on the day that I visited, ranging from locals to Belgians, but I stuck mainly to Magic Hat # 9, since it just suited my mood.

What really drew me in to the place was the way that I was made to feel welcome, almost like a regular, from the moment that I enetered, despite looking really rough and sporting a couple of brewery press-on tattoos on my cheeks. It turned out that Pat, the server that everyone should ask for, is a graduate of the former Sam Adams, which is now Nodding Head and he brought several other former employees with him to become his loyal customers. I was drawn into a sports conversation with a couple of fellows at the bar and somebody else told me about the idea of an "angry pirate", upon hearing that I am a Pittsburgh sports fan. This is the kind of place worth seeking out if you are new in town and want somewhere to hang out.

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The Bishop's Collar in Philadelphia, PA
Place rating: 4.04 out of 5 with 32 ratings