An absolute must if you are in the northeast. Kind of a holy grail/Mecca like place for craft beer. I had 3 different Russian River beers on tap, along with some rare Belgian-collabs for Philly Beer Week. Their Belgian list is exhaustive and simply insane. Get the Mussels for dinner, 25 or 30 mussels stewed in a variety of flavors. Really quite excellent, and the place doesn’t attract the normal hordes like nearby restaurants. If you don’t know Monks Cafe is what it is, you just walk on by, and I’m sure that’s how they like it.
Visited twice late April/Early May 2016. First time stayed for a few beers, second time during a beer release for CBC, waited in line half hour until we left. Long narrow bar area, some seating downstairs. Apparently a bar with standing area upstairs as well, we never got that far. Had Pliny the Elder on tap, nice. Gets crowded fast, we got the feeling we were constantly in the way for the staff or other patrons, still a nice place to visit with a great tap list. I could go back, but would hope to get there on a less busy evening. Didn’t eat.
Monk’s café: What ŕ place! Extensive beer menu with interesting tap selection separated in two rooms with a very Belgian feel to them. Prices are quite decent. Belgian menu offered with nice desert selection. A must in Philadelphia.
Old school place that reminds me a ton of the Hopleaf in Chicago. Nice people but a I don’t give a fuck attitude about you not knowing about beer. Strong draft selection but the bottles are what make this place. I wish there was a bit more local stuff, while it was decent I wasn’t blown away to started looking at the bottle list mostly. The bottle list is pretty deep and I have a strong feeling if you know them, it gets much deeper. Fun spot to hang out, I’d come back.
Dark and dingy in a cool, quiet, sociable environment. Few tables and two bars (one in a front room and one in a back room). Great beer selection, which highlighted top beers from around the entire world. Their house beer (Flemish Sour Ale) was pretty good as well. Good relationship with Russian River, which is a plus! Tired Hands often as well. I had the frog legs and they were phenomenal.
Great but pricey selection.Service is so-so though knowledgeable. Did I say selection is good?
Art (130) Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania | November 18, 2015
Stop #4 on my birthday beer tour. Parking was difficult. The place had a very dive bar feel. Wait was forever for a seat so we didn’t eat. Had some Hill Farmstead on tap so that was cool. I’ll probably only go back for special stuff.
Visited on 10/24/2015. The place was having a Breast Cancer benefit, and very dime they made went to BC research, which was cool. However, every pint was $10 regardless, which is probably not typical, i.e., this place is probably cheaper. This is a nice looking old pub style place, with a bar in back and front. Tables in the middle. Service is fairly attentive, but again, it was jamming when we went. The selection was killer, with stuff not usually seen on the east coast, like Russian River, Lost Abbey, as well as local faves like Tired Hands. The food was awesome, with eclectic stuff, as well as cool pub fare. Value is decent, food is decently priced for this part of town, and the pints aren’t bad. I really liked the place, and would definitely go back.
Pleasant two room bar. Twenty taps, divided between US and European (mostly Belgian) brews. Not the stuff you see in every other craft beer bar. Unfortunately I’ve missed Pliny, but had Damnation instead. They had the Abyss on tap at the front bar. Good selection of bottles. Wish I could stay a bit longer.