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Fiume

Your Rating: None
FiumeFiume
BA SCORE
4.37/5
Outstanding
8 Ratings
FiumeFiume
PLACE INFO

Type: Bar

229 S 45th St
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19104-2918
United States | map

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by Soonami on 08-06-2010

PLACE STATS
Reviews:
7
Ratings:
8
pDev:
8.24%
 
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 8 |  Reviews: 7
Reviews by ithacabaron:
Photo of ithacabaron
4.86/5  rDev +11.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Fiume doesn't exist. Or at least, you'd never think it did.

Directly above Abbyssinia, an Ethiopian restaurant in West Philly, there are about three or four residential studio apartments. And not your fancy studios, with your ovens, and your kitchenettes, but your old school Philly studios, just a bare floor and the a shared bathroom down the hall.

In one of these apartments -- on the second floor, directly on your right as you come up the stairs -- you'll find Fiume. All 150 square feet of it.

There's a fine coating of hipster BO as you enter, but the open windows and rotating fans, season in and season out, keep the air circulating. Besides that, there are folks unironically in shirts and ties here as well, so you'll feel welcome no matter how you're dressed. Two shelves packed with great craft beer at good prices beckon. There's plenty of generously poured liquor if you want a cocktail, and the best fried chicken in the city at the Chinese restaurant one floor down and one door over.

The divest of dives, and by far my favorite bar in all of Philadelphia.

 1,078 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Bouleboubier
4.43/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75

Love this place. Shame I've only made it out there twice. Cozy hole-in-the-wall. Like drinking in a bedroom at a house party, only it's a bedroom that houses a curiously well-stocked bar.

Went for the first time in 2013. A slow night during the week, I sat alone at the bar and talked to the bartender/proprietor -
a friendly, personable individual. Had an Alvinne Podge (for the first time, at his recommendation) and some Ethiopian food from downstairs. This was a new experience in many ways. Very enjoyable. Was looking forward to returning, but as it goes, got sidetracked...

Second visit was last Saturday, with my two brothers. For a Saturday night, possibly because the weather was still decent, I was surprised to find a table open around 8pm. We got a large plate of now reliably-scrumptious Ethiopian cuisine and shared three bottles - Sinebrychoff, a Hof Ten Dormaal sour (name of which escapes me), and a bourbon-barrel aged Scotch ale. Not sure they all went with the food, but with an eclectic bottle selection like they have, one must be a little adventurous. Different bartender this visit - seemed like a young fella, not quite acquainted with the bottle list. Didn't have many helpful suggestions (the three we drank were my choices) and generally seemed to not wanna be bothered kinda. I know enough at this point to find my own way. Room was full, but not packed tight. Comfortable, lively.

For how tiny and tucked away this room is, boy is it packed with a lot of goodies - tasty variety of whiskeys to boot. Highly recommended.

 1,554 characters

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.92/5  rDev +12.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 5

This is one of my favorite bars in Philly. It feels like hanging out in your living room and drinking rare beers from your friend's cellar. Super chill, one of the few bars I could spend hours in with no rush.

It can get pricey and it is cash only, but it is so worth. Having Ethiopian food downstairs is a must!

 314 characters

Photo of razorsdescent
4.1/5  rDev -6.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Come for the ambiance, stay for the... well... ambiance. Good and knowledgeable staff help to compensate for a place that thrives off of perceived obscurity. Playing firmly to the Philly hipster crowd, this spot will be chock-a-block with students and people young and dumb enough to try and cash in on Philly's speakeasy glory years. If you can, ignore the jackass clientele and grab a seat at the bar where knowledgeable bartenders, with good taste, will help you to decide what to drink next.

 495 characters

Photo of Rifugium
4.28/5  rDev -2.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

The less said about this place, the better, so I'll keep it simple. If your good friend built a bar in the upper story of his Philly row home, and stocked it with good beer and booze, it would be Fiume. Good people run this place.

 230 characters

Photo of Jame515
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of TheStig
3.85/5  rDev -11.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3

Fiume (named after the [in]famous Free State of Fiume) is a perfect definition of a dive bar. Small, poorly lit, unmarked and upstairs from a more reputable place, it's not going to challenge Sole Food in the looks department-- but what it lacks in polish it makes up for in ambiance. This was my favorite place to head after poking around the now-demolished Oil Cans. It's a cozy, friendly place with a pretty good selection of craft brews-- Stoudt's comes to mind. Stinking Lizaveta was easy to spot here when I lived in Philly. I still manage to make it back there every so often.

 583 characters

Photo of Soonami
4/5  rDev -8.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Fiume is a bar that does not have any discernible signage or advertising that has built a reputation for itself in its West Philadelphia neighborhood for having only bottled beer selection in a glass-front refrigerator and hosting interesting live music.

The bar is located middle floor of a row house on the corner of 45th and Locust Streets, above the Abyssinia Ethiopian Restaurant. You enter the bar by walking up the side staircase off Locust and once in the door up another flight of steps where the bar is behind a wooden door on your right.

Fiume is absolutely the diviest dive bar you will ever go to. There are probably 4 tables and 10 chairs littered around the bar that seats 5 or 6. The bar has several windows on the West side that are usually open to air out the smell of hipster clientele. The customers probably also decorated the place with the huge black fuzzy spider hanging from the ceiling in the window nook, the sign that says "Long Live Johnny Cash," and a bookcase of dog-eared paperbacks.

That said, it's also very comfortable and the patrons and servers are always willing to engage you in conversation or help you order some food from the restaurant down stairs. The crowd is decidedly young and alternative, so if you are into that then this is a place for you.

The beer selection is limited to a single refrigerator, but it is a very nice selection of beers from Bella Vista and/or Springfield. They usually have German imports, Troegs, Victory, DFH, Unibroue, Founders, Bell's, craft cans, occaisional bombers, all told avout 100 bottles. Here at Fiume you can even get the cherished "Citywide Special," can of PBR and shot of Beam for $3. The selection is pretty nice and the liquor is cheap. Nothing otherworldly but plenty to try.

This is definitely a neighborhood bar that appeals to certain types of people, but if you want a break from Local 44, then visit Fiume, the original West Philly craft bar.
——————
Edit:
fIUME's version of the citywide special is now $4 for a 1oz shot of Old Crow and a can of PBR or Natty Bo.

 2,077 characters

Fiume in Philadelphia, PA
Place rating: 4.37 out of 5 with 8 ratings
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