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The Farmers' Cabinet
Active Beers: 27
Beer Ratings: 97
Beer Avg: 3.86
Taps: 26 / Bottles: 200
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$$ - a bit pricey
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
1113 Walnut St
phone: (215) 923-1113
It should be noted that the house beers, although served exclusively at the Farmer's Cabinet and at the Boilmaker, were in fact brewed for them at a microbrewery they owned in Alexandria, VA, called Cabinet Artisanal Brewhouse.
They no longer have house beers brewed for them.
(Place added by: hhkal17 on 03-18-2011)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 21 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 1 | quality: 3 | service: 1 | selection: 3.5 | $$$$
I will open with the positives. Obviously, the decor is really nice, a lot of thought went into the concept and design. Nice quality beverages -- house beers are good, imports are focused and unique and the cocktails are nice.
My last visit there with my wife I had spent near $40 within 10 minutes and had barely sat down. Draft beer prices are indicated on a big chalkboard for each size pour, for example, $9 / $7 is listed for a given beer. You have to figure the "large" pour would be at least a pint, especially for the house IPA. No, large pours were about 8-10oz taking head size into account. A house freakin IPA close to $10 for half a pint, and none of this is indicated. Bartenders take forever. You’re surrounded by trouser-wearing hipsters and edgy early 30s people, and a freakin dixieland brass trio, or something, blaring repetitive chord progressions endlessly.
I don’t mind spending a lot on good beer. I’ve bought more than my share of bottles on ebay, had massively expensive drinking nights in Belgium, small tastings where $1k plus was spent on just a handful of bottles. That said, I won’t tolerate a place that blatantly rips people off and replaces all customary courtesies you expect from a restaurant/bar with aesthetics and style. Cocktails are $13+ and are 95% ice. Oh but it’s fancy special ice! Fuck off. Don’t bother with this place, I’d much rather hang out at my shitty neighborhood bar with $1 Yeungling pours than shovel money into this snotty, prick establishment that’s all style and no substance.
05-14-2012 01:26:41 |
More by JAXSON
vibe: 3 | quality: 2.5 | service: 2 | selection: 2 | food: 3 | $$$$
Was excited to try this place with some friends. We were there on a Thursday night.. Place was empty. The restaurant is very dark, lit by candlelight and has a an old 1930s farmhouse/barn feel to it. Old ragtime music plays in the background. We sat at a long table and waited for a long time before we were waited on. This is were it got bad fast. My 3 friends order Double Jack and Bruery Cuir and some De Dolle x2IPA. The waiter came back and told us that all 3 of the beers were out.. my friends scrambled to order some other beer cause they didn't want to wait for the guy to come back so they ordered the small glasses (7oz) of some beer for $7.
We got our beer, and finished them rather quickly. The waiter didn't come back to refill our orders for like 15 minutes. Even though he walked by us twice (briskly) and did not stop. We sat with empty glasses. Nobody was there! Really annoying. When we ordered food he proceeded to tell us the 2 dishes we ordered on the menu were sold out as well. Ridiculous! My one friend wanted to leave. Food was fine but at that point everyone was just pissed. The waiter also gave me a wrong beer. At least he gave that to me free. Then when the bill came we were really pissed. Won't be going back
11-21-2011 16:08:27 |
More by Kaydogg
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3 | food: 1 | $$$$
A hop, skip, and a jump away from The Boilermaker, whatever that's worth? Located in the heart of downtown Philly, The Farmers Cabinet is kinda unassuming from the outside, you would never expect this is a bar, except for the small chalkboard outside boasting the upcoming beer events.
Once inside, after going through a large tapestry, I am took away to old style bars located in Europe from the Victorian Era. A lot to look at, dimly lit with some candle light and some dimly lit regular lighting throughout. The front room consists of two bars, beer bar to the left seating 15 or so, a small walkway leading into a cocktail bar serving overpriced booze. To the left of the cocktails an upstairs seating area for larger parties and downstairs are some nice roomy bathrooms.
To the right of the beer bar area is a larger seating area for smaller parties surrounded by walls of open, old beer bottles from everywhere. It's impressive looking.
The bar area is very old looking in a beautiful way with shit I could not describe, but there was a lot of wood. There is about 20 or so taps coming out from the wall in groups of four or five designated by country of origin. Small pours ranged in the 7 dollar range large pours 9 beans and up. Very expensive, but it is all imports and the house made beers by Terry which are a bit steep.
A nice impressive bottle list with a lot of stuff being not available. How hard is it to cross off some beers on the bottle list? The Bartender looked like the figure on the a Heady Topper can, hair and all. While obviously home schooled or just different, he fits the part for the feel of this bar. He was also pretty well versed in all things beer and fermentation and all that. Very detailed when pointing towards all the bullshit overpriced "food" that i will get into later. He did his job.
If you eat here regularly or more than twice, you are either a moron, a 1%er, or just don't know any better. I won't be eating here again and here is why. Portions and price. Insanely overpriced food that would not fill the belly of an ant.
I went with some friends well versed in all things food. We got some stuff including a cheese/charchuterie match up with a lot of additions along with a bottle of Fantome Saison which was delicious.
Worst Char 'board' in Philadelphia by far. 1st off, it's not served on a board, it's served on a slate which is a fail and nasty as well. When the bartender pointed to each type of meat I had a hard time seeing what he was pointing at, and I have 20/20 vision and I was sitting 2 feet from the plate, I swear i could not see anything.
Maybe I am going a bit extreme there. But the following is not extreme. Remember in Goodfellas, when Henry Hill was serving time in prison with Paulie. "Paulie was doing a year for contempt and had a wonderful system for garlic. He used a razor and sliced it so thin, it would liquefy in the pan with a little bit of oil. It’s a very good system."
Remember how thin those garlic slices were in the movie, that's how thin and sized the meat portions were, a TOTAL FUCKING FAILURE. The cheese was also portioned out weak, as well as the bread points to put this shit on. Oh yeah , they drizzled some 'special' honey on the bottom of the slate getting in the way of everything. They also sprinkled some tapioka powder on the plates, whoop de fucking do. The best thing i had all night were the beets which were quite tasty, but probably cost 10 beans. You would have to spend at least 100 beans here to fill your belly.
I don't know what's going on with this place. I like the idea, but it's sort of like your at the casino in this place, no sense of time while money goes quick. For the food portions we ordered, especially the meat/cheese portions, there was at least a 1000% mark up from your local grocer, and the product was not all that special, except the beets.
05-31-2012 04:21:14 |
More by BARFLYB
vibe: 2 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 2 | $$$
I went here after reading reviews from BA. Then I come here to write a review and read the last 3 reviews here and it is something like I'm going to write.
Reviews I didn't read before I went.
All not so hot & all within the last month.
What's up with that?!
Where to start?
I sought out the Farmer's Cabinet on a Fri for lunch. After entering thru a curtain, I was introduced to the darkest joint, I had ever been in. I literally could not see a foot in front of me. I asked to go to a restroom and the waitress, said right down the steps over there....and I just stood there for about 30 secs trying to see the steps. Finally I was led there.
When I came back I wanted to sit at the bar but it was going to be too dark to read what I expected, from BA reviews, to be a great beer and lunch, menu.
Luckily---there was a seat by an open doorway, to the street, where a little daylight sifted thru.
Btw ---my seat was a round no back stool and my table was a "chic", barrel. Both uncomfortable but I guess, that is what you get when someone is trying to be a hip spot. My exact seat is in the BA picture up there. There is a barrel in front of that stool.
What was unlucky were, ironically,,,the beer and lunch menus.
It was beer week and they were boasting their Danish Craft beers. I came for Belgians and/or these new great American beers out there. I guess it was too bad I WASN'T there for Danish beers. This might be a diff review.
Now----they did have an array of Belg beers..(None on tap of note. Hoegarden and Stella, I think, were there), but they were wayyyy out there and very difficult to decipher. The print was, (purposely), made hard to read with a very fancy font I had a couple good ones (St Feuillion Cru and a Roch 8). If I went back, I'd check a few others out.
The food menu was ridiculous.
Has anyone ever heard of a "Hirame Crudo"? That's a lunch entre'. Lots of choices like that.
I wound up eating a soft pretzel.
I can't tell ya much about the inside because, even from where I sat...looking back into the place...all I could see was the end of the bar, nearest me.
I like the oldtime music.
I like where the Farmers Cabinet sits. Right across the stree from the Forest Theater.
I liked my seat looking out the open door onto a busy street...albeit, an uncomfortable seat and, heh, again---eating off of a,"chic and hip", barrel.
I also would go back again just to try a few more diff beers. This time, tho---I'd know what I'm getting into.
06-06-2012 21:05:47 |
More by Dennycurr
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 2 | $$$
Went here for the Mikkeller tap takeover as part of Philly Beer Week. 20+ taps of yummy Denmark craft. As such, did not get to try any of their house brews.
The Farmers' Cabinet begs the question....is it possible for a place to be simply too hipster? This one has it all....waiters and bartenders forced to wear suspenders with old-timey facial hair, mason jar lights, taxidermy on the wall, and even a (not-bad, though loud) Dixieland brass band in the corner. Very dimly lit, and surprisingly large, with several tables and two levels, not to mention roomy bathrooms. Clearly they are trying really hard here.
And the bottle selection is significantly extensive and unique, with a huge selection of European craft beers and quality domestics, all put into groups by style with name and abv easily seen. That said, 9 bucks for a standard pour from the tap is a little high, and though there's an option of a 7 buck pour as well, none of the servers bothered pointing this out (That being said....Mikkeller often costs you 8 bucks for a 12 oz bottle anyway, so I guess 9 at a restaurant for a similar pour is no biggie). Little expensive perhaps, but the variety and quality of the curating is impressive.
Where the place kind of gets my goat a little bit is the quality of the food. Obviously they're attempting to go high end here, offering a quality dining experience along with the beer, but the charcuterie plate was meager and ridiculously overpriced, as are most of the smaller courses (12 bucks for a single marrow bone? c'mon). And my main course veal at 27 bucks was small, and overcooked, with a negligible carrot garnish. Mass produced wedding catering food came to mind.
I'd return for the beer and maybe a Bavarian Pretzel or two, but would not eat the food. There's potential here, but how about less focus on the atmosphere, more on the vittles, guys?
06-04-2012 00:30:05 |
More by dmgnyc
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 1.75 | $$$
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: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 2.75 | food: 4 | $$$$
Whatever happened to the Farmers' Cabinet?? Too many shakeups and issues, I guess...
My first visit years ago was super impressive. I was now looking forward for more rare European taps and their own house brews but guess what? They're all gone.
On my second visit, they had Ballast Point Big Eye and Two Brothers listed under the "adventurous" section, and Sierra Torpedo as a "seasonal". Belhaven Wee Heavy and Coronado Brown are "house favorites". You got the picture, right? This place looks like a Taco Mac now, as far as beer is concerned.
The bottle menu still looks good, and the cocktails are stunning indeed (if pricey and small). Still same great service and beautiful atmosphere. But really, where is the beer?
The Farmers' Cabinet has got to be the classiest, coolest beer-focused establishment in the Philadelphia area. You wouldn't know from the outside, but step inside and it's like entering Das Kabinet des Dr Caligari.
The place reminds me of Death & Co. in NYC and other speakeasies... cool decor, lots of wood, dim lights, candles... romance and flirtation. Staff looks mighty dapper, with bow-ties and vests and well-groomed moustaches.
There is a beer bar upfront, a martini bar on the other side and a large (LARGE!) dining room past the bars. The entire joint was quiet and nice when we visited on an early Monday afternoon, and service was swift (not sure how knowledgeable the bartender was about beer, though, and I think he poured too much head). Only negatives would be how hot it was inside (the cabinet needs more A/C) and the loud music, slightly off place for an empty bar.
Selection is exceptional indeed, if only because they carry the rarest beers from Europe. I had a tequila-barreled Mikkeller Black, The Bruery Cuir and Beer Here Dark Hops. Also saw Brewdog Tokio '09, Evil Twin Yang, Baladin Super on tap. Beers are expensive but worth- where else can you get these bizarre brews on tap? I like their small pours (around 6-8 oz) because it allows me to try a bunch of stuff, even though they go for about $1 per ounce.
Food is good, almost very good. Lots of cheeses and charcuterie and pairing boards and all of that you expect in this kind of bar. The wife ordered deviled duck eggs and a cheese fondue; next time I will order from the meat-heavy menu.
We left the Cabinet intensely impressed. Sure, it is pricey (at least for Philly), but oh-so-worth. I need more!
04-29-2013 15:07:17 |
More by DoubleSimcoe
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$$$
This place is a dimly lit, small pub. Like an upscale 1700s place that has old style wooden tables and a bench seat and is lit by candlelight (although not solely by candlelight as there are backlights behind the bottle displays)
The selection of beer is very expensive and unique. They have a selection of De Molen beers on tap as well as some of their house beers and a few other imports. Luckily, the bottle prices are listed-but they are extremely expensive. They had the only keg in the US of Mooi and Machtig-which is a huge offering.
The waitress was very helpful and let us keep a copy of the menu. She did well in reccomending my mother a beer that fit her limited palate.
Speaking of which-the food menu was rpetty limited. We had blueberry pancakes, which were very good, but expensive. The other food there was kinda weird and trendy.
04-25-2012 01:03:16 |
More by PittBeerGirl
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$$
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: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$$
Wow! What an awesome place! We visited on 3/19 (third day of operations) and were blown away.
The Farmer's Cabinet is located at the edge of Washington Square West, a short hop from Tria, Varga Bar and Fergie's. The place has a very cool vibe from the minute you walk in. On the right side is a Victorian styled bar that serves specialty cocktails, on the right is the beer bar. The dining room behind the beer side has miles of rectangular tables, including a communal table that can seat 50 or 60 people. Lots of medium and dark wood, stuffed animal heads, an old upright piano, barrels repurposed as tables, all in all a good look. Unlike the owners' other places, Farmers' Cabinet is only mostly candlelit The recessed lighting is welcome.
We grabbed a comfortable stool at the copper-topped beer bar. There were about 23 beers on tap during our visit. The taps are split into 5 or 6 tap sections. The beer lists is divided geographically (Belgium, Germany, Scandinavia, UK(?)) and displayed on a wooden board suspended by ropes above the taps. There is also a section that will be devoted to house brewed beers (mainly saisons and barrel-aged beers), though the brew house is not yet installed. Selections are off beat and pricey, though you can get a half pour to keep the sticker shock down. I had a Beer Here Dark Hops (never seen the beer or brewery on tap around here) and a Hop God because I love that beer (it was, by the way, the only American beer on tap). The bottle list numbers about 80 and is similar in nature.
Service was quite attentive and knowledgeable.
The only food we had was a cheese plate. The menu is game-centric and pricey so I don't see us going here for dinner. But for drinks and cheese we will be here plenty.
03-28-2011 19:47:23 |
More by sholland119
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The Farmers' Cabinet in Philadelphia, PA
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