10 Hottest New Bars in Philadelphia

By Zagat Staff | October 5, 2015 By Zagat Staff  |  October 5, 2015

Whether you're in the market for special-occasion cocktails or a new post-work happy-hour destination, there are plenty of newly opened spots to grab a seat at the bar. Check our list of the 10 hottest new bars in Philadelphia as you plan your next outing.

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    Triangle Tavern

    Why It’s Hot: Retro meets hipster at this revamp of the South Philly classic dive that's been transformed into a laid-back bar and restaurant that offers something for everyone.

    Must-Drink: Fancy a Negroni No. 1 or Negroni No. 2? Or perhaps the third or fourth or fifth variation? Pick your poison from a whole slate, entitled “The Bitter the Better” ($12–$13). 

    Insider Tip: It’s not on the menu, but if you ask nicely, your bartender might flavor your goblet of spiked water ice with juice from imported Amarena cherries.

    1338 S. 10th St.; 215-800-1992

  • Franky Bradley’s

    Why It’s Hot: Find the entrance to Mark Bee’s hidden Midtown Village tavern and prepare to be dazzled by a profusion of dimly lit Americana artifacts that are as intriguing as the bar’s cocktails.

    Must-Drink: Viva La Diva brings a lemon-kissed flute of cava gone floral with crème de violette and St. Germain ($10).

    Insider Tip: The second-floor bar turns into a full-on disco dance club on weekends.

    1320 Chancellor St.; 215-735-0735

  • Bud & Marilyn’s

    Why It’s Hot: With a cocktail menu crafted by Franklin Bar vet Colin Shearn, the bar at this throwback spot is pouring retro cocktails that don’t take themselves too seriously.

    Must-Drink: Blue drinks shouldn’t be relegated to vacation days. The Cannonball! ($11) is a bright blend of blanco tequila with rosemary, lime and just enough blue curaçao to make it a whole lot of fun.

    Insider Tip: Head to the bar during happy hour for gimlet slushes ($6) and fried cheese curds with garlic scape ranch ($5).

    1234 Locust St.; 215-546-2220

  • Whetstone Tavern

    Why It’s Hot: We’d expect nothing less than a killer draft list from the folks who brought us Brauhaus Schmitz, but this corner spot also rounds out the offerings with an on-par menu of cocktails and wine.

    Must-Drink: With Lancaster County influences all over the menu, it’s no surprise that there’s a Pennsylvania Dutch–inspired cocktail on the list. The Burly Birch ($7) is an easy drinking blend of bourbon and birch beer served long with a wedge of lime.

    Insider Tip: Local somm Marnie Old chose the wine list here, meaning that there’s so much more than just a few reds and whites. Look out for a sweet orange muscat and a vinho verde rosé by the glass.

    700 S. Fifth St.; 267-239-0906

  • Photo by: Danya Henninger

    Tria Fitler Square

    Why It’s Hot: It's hard to go wrong when you add a sleek wood interior and adorable park view to Tria’s regularly impressive roster of beer and wine — plus, this fourth location has a full hot kitchen.

    Must-Drink: Summer nights will go perfectly with a sparkling rosé Brut from all-female Italian winery Le Vigne di Alice ($12.50).

    Insider Tip: No reservations are accepted, so the possibility for a small wait exists on busy weekends (hint: it's worth it).

    2227 Pine St.; 215-309-2245

  • Vesper

    Why It’s Hot: Can you take an old boys’ club, lose the cloistered exclusivity, add a modern bar and yet keep the original elegance intact? It’s something the partners at this tucked-away Rittenhouse supper lounge have managed with class.

    Must-Drink: “Classics without a twist” include the wake-up special Corpse Reviver II, where an absinthe-spritzed glass carries gin, Cocchi Americano, fresh lemon and Cointreau ($14).

    Insider Tip: Ask about the hidden entrance to the downstairs bar — once you know, you’re in the know. Hint: there's a landline and a secret password involved.

    223 S. Sydenham St.; 267-930-3813

  • Brick and Mortar

    Why It’s Hot: This industrial-chic Eraserhood spot has enough cocktails to make it a full-blown drinks destination.

    Must-Drink: If you’re going for drinking longevity, take a look at the Session cocktail menu, which includes less punch-packing options like the Chrysanthemum ($10) with Benedictine, dry vermouth, absinthe and orange bitters.

    Insider Tip: The bartenders here have friends all over the city; make sure to follow the restaurant for updates on the great guest bartender nights.

    315 N. 12th St.; 215-923-1596

  • Tired Hands Fermentaria

    Why It’s Hot: Set in the middle of a 10,000-barrel production facility, the new taproom from the Main Line’s most creative brewery not only pours house beers — the taps also flow with housemade soda and custom-roast cold-brew coffee.

    Must-Drink: Any of the brewery’s “strange and beautiful” beers, like Weedeater, a double IPA with notes of "intense grassy substances," or Oktüberfest brewed with yams.

    Insider Tip: There are 180 seats, but to be extra sure you get one, use their online reservation system here. (Note: it's closed Tuesdays.)

    35 Cricket Terrace, Ardmore; 484-413-2983

  • Coeur

    Why It’s Hot: Taking over a cozy Italian Market location, the craft-beer impresarios behind Memphis Taproom and Strangelove’s have gone a step beyond the gastropub for their latest endeavor. Sure the beer list is solid, but there’s plenty more to enjoy here.

    Must-Drink: With seven wines on tap, enjoying a few glasses from the draft list is a must. An Austrian Gruner Veltliner ($8) is a great place to start.

    Insider Tip: The Coeur team joins forces with local breweries on the regular. Check out their Lose the Skin wild cider ($6) collaboration with Bullfrog Brewing while it’s still available.

    824 S. Eighth St.; 215-922-6387

  • Bar Bombon

    Why It’s Hot: This vegan Latin American newcomer boasts a cold-pressed juice program as well as a comprehensive cocktail menu, and everyone knows that fresh juice + booze = great drinks.

    Must-Drink: A top-shelf margarita made with El Jimador blanco and fresh lime and is only $5 during happy hour.

    Insider Tip: Who would have thought that a vegan spot would have one of the most solid mezcal lists in the city?

    133 S. 18th St.; 267-606-6612

Places Mentioned

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Franky Bradley's

American Washington Square West
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The Olde Bar

Bar Old City
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Tria Fitler Square

Cafe Fitler Square
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Tired Hands Fermentaria

American Ardmore
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Fine Dining Rittenhouse Square
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Bud & Marilyn's

Washington Square West
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Whetstone Tavern

American Queen Village
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Brick and Mortar

American Callowhill
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