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The Farmers' Cabinet
Active Beers: 27
Beer Ratings: 92
Beer Avg: 3.83
Taps: 26 / Bottles: 200
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$$ - a bit pricey
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
1113 Walnut St
phone: (215) 923-1113
It should be noted that the house beers, although served exclusively at the Farmer's Cabinet and at the Boilmaker, were in fact brewed for them at a microbrewery they owned in Alexandria, VA, called Cabinet Artisanal Brewhouse.
They no longer have house beers brewed for them.
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
Since I have not tried the food I cannot comment yet, so on to the beer and other great stuff.
I am on a quest for Italian craft beers and this place is the place for such beer. A lot of beer drinkers may question the reason why Italians are getting into the beer brewing, but it is something we do with passion. A lot of these beers concentrate on beers that are for the Italian palate. Italian craft beer is new so we have yet to see where it will go.
I also love liqueurs from Italy, and this place has a small but beautiful choice.
The wine list is impressive as I see selections I have not seen anywhere else.
I am excited for the Rare Italian Beer night Dec 6. I hope see others there too!
11-05-2011 00:51:47 |
More by Giovannilucano
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$$
The Farmer's Cabinet is an exquisite establishment. I LOVE the vibe here. Wow. Perfect set-up, perfect lighting...I could sit there all day drinking slowly just in my own thoughts. I really enjoy the separate beer/wine bars. Beers on tap are always excellent, with a good selection. Could be a larger selection, but it's still decent. They always have special events going on as well which can be pretty awesome if you can make it.
Service was spotty the first time I went, but that was during a Beer Week event so it was understandable. The second time I went I had exceptional service from my very beer-knowledgeable bartender.
Food is good, but a bit different from normal "bar food." Be prepared to pay a lot of money...food and drink here is VERY expensive. One of those $8 for a pint sort of places...not outrageous, but still way more than what I would consider reasonable. Still, you are paying partly for the experience, and this place has a lot to offer. Go at least once, and more if you can afford to!
10-29-2011 05:14:14 |
More by MsRif
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
I went to the Farmers Cabinet last night with the intention of hating the place. It is Restaurant Week and that was enough of an excuse for me to visit this place for the first time. I wanted to hate this place because I hated the owners former restaurant Fork and Barrel. The Farmers Cabinet, while very similar to Fork and Barrel in appearance, was for me much improved!
The atmosphere is rustic. Lots of old antiques and worn wood everywhere. Candles light up the bar and tables and are scattered throughout the restaurant, but this is supplemented with artificial light as well. (Huge negative at F&B, which was 100% candle lit...waaaay to dark) Here the lighting adds to the mood instead of hurting my eyes. There was live music as well, something that I hear that Farmers Cabinet does quite often. The musicians were right next to where my table was located but they sang old timey music and I was thrilled to hear these quirky musicians with their old school microphone and odd horns....
The seating arrangement is the same as F&B: communal. The tables are laid out lengthwise down the main hall and you could be sitting on the same bench as a stranger. I like this way...seems European. The one wall is lined with beer bottles from end to end, inch by inch. And the other walls have rustic artwork and taxidermy pieces keeping with the theme.
The waiter we had was very polite and attentive. I only had to correct him once when he said that the sour beers were the best beers that they carried. He knew a lot, and gave a reasonable response when I asked him what a Grisette was. I kept trying to figure out more by asking a lot of questions, and he told me that he would check about my questions. He immediately went to the bar and asked the bartender my questions, only to return with some clarified answers. He also made some very nice suggestions about food pairings and at no point (other than the sour beer comment) was pretentious. THIS is what I was worried was going to happen. But he was just nice and helpful. I tipped him well.
The selection of beer is good. They had 2 house beers available, a Grisette and a Stout. I had both and enjoyed both. The list is definitely pretentious and somewhat snobbish, but less so than F&B. Their saving grace was that they actually had SOME beers on tap that I knew and that were good beers to boot. (Fullers London Pride, Victory Kolsch, Bells Oarsman) A lot of the beers are no name beers that no one has ever had before, and I think that is what makes it pretentious, as they certainly consider themselves a beer bar.
The food was excellent!!! It came out quickly and was just so good, that when I took the first bite (or actually sip, since I started with soup) I was saddened that I was probably really, really going to like this place. I ate the Roasted Corn Soup, Grilled Pork Loin and Vanilla Custard. All were top notch meals!
I will be returning here, and I hope they lighten up a little bit on the no-name beers....
09-24-2011 23:08:11 |
More by MusicaleMike
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
A nice open front throwback bar in the city. This place is dimly lit by candles and has lots of wood inside. The music is what seems to be old time instrumental records. A little too dark inside for me, it kind of feels like using candles when the electricity goes out. A beer bar on the left with a large selection of beers posted on wooden slabs hanging on the wall. There is a large printed beer list, categorized by beer style mostly. Tens of beers available and a variety are hard to come by. Primarily European beer, they offer some every day drinkers as well as rare beers and vintage selections too. This place leans heavily toward higher end beers and pricey selections, mainly in the way of large and aged bottles. The bartenders were always friendly attentive and very knowledgeable about the beer there. I didn't try any of the food yet, but it looks pretty intriguing, mostly game inspired. I need to step up my beer knowledge when I head back here, and try the food as well. A great place for beer lovers.
06-23-2011 22:40:44 |
More by BeerForMuscle
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
I was finally able to stop here on a Thursday night during a recent trip to Philadelphia for work.
A: The place is dark and very rustic. The place has an old time colonial feel to it. The place is lit primarily by candle light with a few inset lights behind the bar.
Q: I was very impressed with the quality of beer choices here. Some were so unique, I never even heard of them.
S: Service was superb. Chris, the bartender, was very attentive and even offered reccomendation for beer and food.
S: For the beer choices, I was impressed. A lot of selections you never see on draft or have never heard of. I had a difficuly time deciding on my draft choices because of the selection and uniqueness of the offerings.
F: I was impressed with the food I made. However, I took the food reccomendations from my bartender and did not stray. I have the Pea Tendril Salad, Fried Sweetbreads and Short Rib Burger. All of which were outstanding.
V: For the food, I thought the prices were on par for what I got/expected for Center City Philadelphia. The beer I thought was a bit pricey but I have no basis for a price on some of the selections I had because I have never seen them. A good point is that the beer is offered in "half glasses" which allows for more sampling
All in all, I was impressed and I look forward to going back again. If they ever get to brewing in-house, that would also be another reason to visit.
06-21-2011 17:42:39 |
More by mymrnngjckt
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$$
I've been to the Farmer's Cabinet a few times now and have to say that I'm really impressed with it. I haven't eaten there yet but have been for drinks several times and as recently as last night.
The vibe of this place is awesome. I know a lot of people have complained about the atmosphere but for me it's perfect. Sure, it's dark in there but I don't do much drinking in the day time so it's not really a problem for me. Even during the day, the front is open this time of year so there should be plenty of light coming in. Lots of dark wood, two bars(one for beer one for craft cocktails) and a bunch of barrels along the one wall. I haven't spent much time in the dining room but the front bar area is nice. In addition, they have really cool, unique music there, whether live or recorded. During one of my visits there was a folk/jug band playing some great instrumentals. Trumpet, percussion(including washboard!) and something else. The recorded music is mostly all pre-war including delta blues, big band, ragtime and folk. It adds a nice touch to the speakeasy kind of feel. The front area is kind of small so it can get a bit crowded but that's my only complaint.
All of the bartenders here have been friendly and knowledgeable so far and have dealt with larger crowds very well. For the extensive list of mostly rare European beers that they carry, I was surprised at how knowledgeable they were about what they were offering. On slower nights you can actually sit and have a nice conversation with them about the beers and how their house beers will be coming along.
At first glance the selection is good but not terribly impressive but my opinion of this has changed in less than a week. Many of the beers offered are bottles, however, they are rarely seen on draft. They are priced kind of high but you can try a beer at that price point instead of buying a bottle at a store for 3-5 times that amount. Also, they offer half pours for a bit less which allows you to try more beers. Great for tickers/reviewers. In addition, they just put on head brewer Terry Hawbaker's(formerly of BullFrog) beers on tap. When these are at full production this place will be incredible. Everything will be barrel aged and the main focus will probably be on sours/wilds. The last time was there they had 26 beers on tap including three I had never seen anywhere on tap or in bottle as well as Pliny the Elder, four casks including Hanssenns Oude Kriek and '09 JW Lees and a crazy bottle list that rivals any bar in the area except Monk's. They have 100 bottles mostly focusing on beer from Europe. Tons of stuff from Italy, Scandinavia, Germany, Belgian, etc. The lambic selection is also very, very impressive. The bottles are very costly but for a Center City bar there not much more than they would be in a bottle shop if you could find them. My only complaint is the lack f more American craft options. I know that isn't there focus but it would be cool to see a few more.
Overall, I'm really excited that this place is in town. I love the vibe, the service is very good and the selection is great. The prices are a bit high but not crazy considering the cost and quality of the beers they serve. Recommended!
06-15-2011 08:42:40 |
More by corby112
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$$
The girlfriend and I visited The Farmers Cabinet today for their Belgian Beer Geek Brunch as part of Philly Beer Week. Conveniently located in Center City, I was very excited to visit this place who's making a name for themselves since opening in March of this year.
Walking up Walnut Street, you're greeted by an open front to the restaurant with huge barrel tables on the sidewalks, seating patrons. Inside, a "cocktail" specialty bar is on the right, where we ended up sitting as it was completely packed for the event. The left holds the beer bar and fortunately today they were serving beer at both bars.
The bar is copper plated, awesome looking just like the entire interior. It's a Western / Victorian / farm-centric atmosphere and decor. Almost all of the lighting is provided by candles, though there are bulb lights recessed in the ceiling. Overall, it's fairly dimly lit but gives a really cool vibe. Completely unique in Center City, I absolutely loved it.
The barman greeted us promptly and was very attentive throughout, despite being quite busy though they had the necessary staff on today - excellent. I ordered a Shortrib burger and my girlfriend ordered the BBQ Pork, both of which were served with hand-cut and handmade chips on a thick stone slab. Totally cool. Our meals were both out of this world, cooked to perfection. The menu is very game-centric, even during the special brunch menu that included duck among other items.
The prices were in line with most other places for the meals, nothing overpriced, really. The beers on the other hand were a little bit more expensive. Most pours were 7 oz or 11 oz, which is nice to have the choice and save some $ if you want.
Overall, this was a wonderful first impression for a brand new establishment. The beer is a great selection, 25+ taps from all over Europe mainly, food is outstanding, atmosphere was wonderful and the service was good. A must try!
06-05-2011 21:49:55 |
More by ShanePB
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 1.75 | $$$
I'd been looking forward to going to this place since it opened (just recently, as I write this). It's definitely a very nice place, and in my opinion has the potential to become one of Philly's best bars...were it not for the shady ownership. My first visit occurred during a Philly Beer Week event, and as such, it was a bit chaotic at the bar, but further visits have proven more fruitful.
Atmosphere is very nice and classy, dark (always good). Sort of British / Victorian style decor hybridized with old Americana / farmhouse. A large, primary bar greets you when you enter, and there is a really nice selection of diverse beers from all over the world, with signs specifically telling you what region of the Earth your beer has traveled from: Germany/Austria, Scandinavia, etc. 25 or so beers on tap, and often a couple casks. They truly serve beers here that you will most likely never see anywhere else. Additionally, their house beers are exceptional. Cabinet Artisanal is the name of the brewery in VA that supplies beers exclusively (so far) to Farmers' Cabinet and the Boilermaker, and over its short existence, the beer has improved by leaps and bounds.
There is a secondary bar in the next room, that to features wine and cocktails exclusively. Additionally, there are a couple very nice dining areas, barrel-tables dotted about where you can just chill out casually with your beer, a few sofas, and an outside area. Very nice.
The service can be hit or miss. Sometimes I/we feel invisible, with the servers not even giving a passing glance...I've mainly experienced this on the rare event that I get a table as opposed to sitting at the bar. Other times, everything is just fine. I suppose it's all a matter of who you "get" when it comes to your bartender/server. Overall, the staff and bartenders give me the impression of being elitist and aloof, which can really be kind of a turn-off, though it doesn't really effect me too much (especially if the good beer is flowing).
The menu...seems to be a running problem. At first it was quite diverse and atypical, with game items and such. Then I think they fired the kitchen because they weren't cutting it, as it were. The new menu (as I edit this in mid-2012), is okay, but very inaccessible. Your choices are basically overpriced snacks ($8 for a dry freaking pretzel?), or overpriced entrees ($30 for a freaking pork chop?). No mid-sized selections, and no real diversity in the menu. I'd rather go next door and get a slice of pizza when I leave the bar. I've had a few tasty items here, but overall the food options are woefully inadequate.
Do bring your big wallet when you come here, because the beer is not cheap either, and you can really run your tab up fast, considering it's mostly 12oz. pours you get. I did like the half-pour option though. Rarer beer can move upwards of $10 for a pour between 4-7oz.
Very good bar overall. It's lesser qualities are compensated for by their impressive and unique tap list. Too bad the owners are total deadbeats and will probably run this bar into the ground like all their other endeavors (Boilermaker, Fork & Barrel, Butcher & Brewer, etc., etc., probably five other doomed bars by the time this entry is locked).
06-05-2011 02:20:46 |
More by Rifugium
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$$
A uniquely rustic outpost in the middle of Center City Philly with an exceptional foreign beer menu. Upon entering, your transported to a 1920's era farmstead - one side has slabs of imperfectly cut wood planks and burlap sack line the walls along with farm tools and back woods decor like mounted game and fur pelts while the other is victorian in feel. Candles accent the dimply lit room, wooden barrels substitue for hightop tables. 4 distinct rooms in the palce - a barn like area with a copper topped bar for the exclusive use of serving their exceptional beer menu, a 2nd victorian bar for prohibition era cocktails in an adjacent room seperated halfway by a wall. One dining area features a long farmhouse style table that seats upwards of 35 people for a community like dining feel while another features victorian feel and more secluded and individual dining. I could go on about the atmosphere, but this is a beer site.
The draft beer menu is current 26 offerings with 24 taps and 2 casks. The bottle menu is about 100 strong. About 90% imports with plans for 4-5 in house brews comming later in 2011. The draft options are made up of brews that see very little distribution by this method. 4-5 beers each from Belgium, Germany, Scandinavia, Italy and UK make up most of the taps. Beers can be sampled in 7oz or 10oz sizes. The bottle list is divided amongst components of taste, rather then style (ie. snifter worthy, roasty, friendly, funky). Quite a unique list for draft, and while many of the bottles can be found elsewhere in the city, to have all in one place is quite spectacular. The only knock is the price - think about $5-$6 per 7oz pour and $7-$9 per 10oz pour for draft - but slightly expected based on atmosphere and rarity. The bottle prices are comparable to other notable beer meca's in the area - maybe just a few quaters higher. The few beer events they have had so far have been wonderful and upcomming Philly Beer Week looks to be a good one.
Service has been good my first few visits, staff is quite knowledegable and the overall busyness of the place in its first few weeks can attribute to some of the small kinks.
A majority of what food i have sampled has been good... the mmenu, preparation and presentation are a little unfocused at this time.
Overall, the atmosphere is great, the beer menu is exceptionaly unique. Only the price would keep this from being a routine stop off.
05-23-2011 16:06:20 |
More by rfgetz
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
In town, Twilight Singers at the Troc tonight. Plans to meet the sister-in-law at Monk's. I stopped in and never left...
Atmosphere: Like an old farmhouse and barn. I entered at the cocktail bar, copper covered and very nice. Realizing the error of my ways (cocktails?), I made my way over to the tap bar. Remember how I said that I like chalkboards? This one opts for wood panels over chalk, a very nice touch (it cleans as well as a chalkboard too). Lots of wood on the bar's back wall, along with the listings of ales and lagers, grouped by geographic region. To the left of the bar, a cheese- and bread-monger's station. Dining is in the back, as are racks containing barrels. No house beers right now, but, hmmm what will end up there?
Quality: I was greeted immediately at the cocktail bar and was graciously sent off to the beer bar. Clean restrooms, crisp menu, good staff. A veritable hive of activity.
Service: Chris, the bartender, was friendly, quickly striking up a conversation with me. We have a mutual friend in Terry Hawbaker (forgive the term, I'd say that Terry and I are friendly acquaintances, but 'friends' drives home the small world motif so much better). He guided me through a few beers and made an excellent recommendation on cheese (moliterno, a pecorino with black truffles). A drink on the house even! Oh, Terry also stopped by (didn't immediately recognize him without the long hair, porkpie hat and glasses). We chatted about his plans, Bullfrog and other sundry matters. No beer yet, but he is planning to starting brewing in a few weeks.
Selection: Beers from across the globe. The heavier Italian focus surprised me. The listing included 20 beers of continental origin and a guest tap for Mongo. I went through several different beers during my stop: Hoffstetten Saphir Bock, Del Ducato Via Emilia, Schlenkerla Helles Lager, Haandbryggeriet Royk Uten Ild and 't Brouwot Netebuk. SIL Sarah had the cider, potential BIL Bill had the Schlenkerla rauchbier. While we were there, Terry and Brian Strumke of Stillwater fame were plotting out PBW ideas - oh the secrets I know!
Food: Eclectic menu focusing on the farm. I ordered a cheese plate (the aforementioned moliterno) and tried a few others (a pecorino, gouda, and bleu) with the resident cheesemonger. Sarah had a cheese plate sampler. Meats, both charcuterie and otherwise, along with fresh breads are also available. A full dinner menu also.
A very nice place, I'm glad it didn't run off into the ether after one glass. I'm looking forward to the artisanal beers.
05-11-2011 00:06:49 |
More by akorsak
The Farmers' Cabinet in Philadelphia, PA