Photos, story by Jill Beckel
Explore Philly stopped into McGillin’s Old Ale House on a chilly Thursday evening in February. Known as the “oldest continuously operating tavern” in Philadelphia, it was established in 1860 on 1310 Drury Street. According to their website, “McGillin’s Olde Ale House threw open its doors the year Lincoln was elected president. That’s shortly after the Liberty Bell cracked and long before ground was broken for Philadelphia City Hall. The beer taps have been flowing since 1860 — making it one of the oldest taverns in the country.”
With such a rich history, McGillin’s Old Ale House is a must-stop for locals and tourists alike. The bar is filled with history including many old Philadelphia photos and sports memorabilia on the walls. The relaxing, low-key environment makes it a great place for friends, coworkers and couples to stop in for a bite to eat or a drink. Love must be in the air since more couples have met, became engaged and hosted bachelor/bachelorette parties and even gotten married at McGillin’s Olde Ale House than any other place in Philadelphia!
Beer enthusiasts will love the fact that McGillin’s always has 30 beers on draft. They are committed to Eastern Pennsylvania breweries and serve a large selection of regional microbrews including Yards, Stoudt’s, Flying Fish, Sly Fox and Dogfish Head beers on tap as well as bottled beers. In addition, McGillin’s serves an eclectic mix of lagers, ales and pilsners from Europe. McGillin’s serves the ONLY stout that’s brewed exclusively in Ireland! Three house specialties — McGillin’s Real Ale, McGillin’s Genuine Lager and McGillin’s 1860 IPA — are brewed in Adamstown by Stoudt’s. In fact, McGillin’s serves more of Stoudt’s draft beer than any other tavern in Pennsylvania.
Each month, McGillin’s features different delicious drink specials. February’s drink specials start at just $4 each! We got to try the “Freezin’ Flyer Fan-tini” which was created to celebrate the Broad Street Bullies. It was made with raspberry vodka, triple sec and peach daiquiri blended and served in a martini glass rimmed with black sugar. It looked as good as it tasted! Open daily from 11:00 am – 2:00 am, McGillin’s features an extensive menu of appetizers, soup, salads, pizza, wings, burgers, sandwiches, platters and entrees to suit anyone’s palate. For dinner, we tried Shepherd’s Pie, “A McGillin’s Favorite” special. The delicious dish featured slow-cooked sirloin simmered with vegetables and herbs topped with whipped mashed potatoes and was served with garlic bread and a salad – all for just $9.99. It warmed our hearts and bellies! Be sure to stop in for brunch Saturdays and Sundays from 11:00 am – 3:00 pm too!
McGillin’s Old Ale House is the perfect place to stop in for lunch, dinner or drinks. Most people seemed like they had just come from class or work to hang out with friends. With a ton of food and drink specials, there’s always something new to try. McGillin’s is happy to host private parties as well and offers a variety of open bar and hot and cold buffet packages. Stop in for a drink after work today.