Releases: Expanded View
What's in the Callowhill Neighborhood?
Restuarants, Bars, Galleries, Shops and More
Dubbed the “Loft District” by real estate developers and “The Eraser ’Hood” by locals referencing the once-dark landscape that inspired former resident David Lynch’s cult classic Eraserhead, Callowhill is something between these two extremes. The stylish-yet-still-transforming neighborhood attracts both young professionals who enjoy its high-end condos and close proximity to Center City and artists looking for affordable studio and gallery spaces. The formerly industrial neighborhood charms with a rich stock of large, urban buildings, remnants of cobblestone streets, edgy rock clubs, emerging galleries and hidden cultural gems.
Just north of Center City, Callowhill’s boundaries run from 8th to Broad Streets, spanning Spring Garden and Vine Streets and running along the northern border of Chinatown. Bisecting the neighborhood are the distinct elevated train tracks of the dormant Reading Railroad, which many residents are hoping to turn into a park in the vein of New York City’s High Line in 2018, promising further development and creative activity in this burgeoning neighborhood.
Neighborhood tips, itineraries and maps are available at visitphilly.com/neighborhoods.
Eats & Drinks:
- Brick and Mortar – This neighborhood tavern attracts people from around the city with its casual atmosphere and rustic American fare. Patrons love the hand-cut truffle fries, lobster corn dog with lemon paprika aioli, the Southern barbecue plate, hand-crafted cocktails and American craft beer. 315 N. 12th Street, (215) 923-1596, bamphilly.com
- Bufad – Callowhill power couple Mike and Jeniphur Pasquarello, of nearby Café Lift and Prohibition Taproom, recently celebrated the three-year anniversary of their third culinary foray. This 30-seat Neapolitan-style pizzeria serves up seasonal specialty pies and plenty of smaller plates in a bring-your-own-bottle (BYOB) setting. 1240 Spring Garden Street, (215) 238-9311, bufadpizza.com
- Café Lift – One of the earliest eateries to capitalize on Callowhill’s boom, Café Lift is an urbane brunch and lunch spot in an airy post-industrial space. The menu includes panini, frittatas and crespelle, including the irresistible Nutty Monkey with bananas and Nutella. 428 N. 13th Street, (215) 922-3031, cafelift.com
- The Institute – The main subject matter this institute studies is beer, and a 16-tap draft list offers a wide-ranging selection. The corner bar, featuring two floors of private booths with their own TVs, also serves up quirky meals such as burgers with shredded pork, pepper jack cheese, pickled jalapenos and bacon; tater tots with chipotle pulled pork; and mac and cheese with roasted garlic Alfred. 549 N. 12th Street, (215) 787-0888, institutebar.com
- Llama Tooth – This eclectic bistro’s mural-clad outdoor patio featuring a Tiki bar with tropical drinks and a huge menu of bottled microbrews caters to the pre-club crowds, while the unpretentious menu (barbecue pork mac and cheese, pulled pork tacos and veggie burgers) boasts everyman appeal. 1033 Spring Garden Street, (267) 639-4582, llamatooth.com
- Prohibition Taproom – The owners of Café Lift branched out into the gastropub scene with their rehabbed taproom, outfitted with retro-funky filament bulb lighting fixtures and a killer jukebox. The menu includes a solid tap list of domestic microbrews and a rotating bottle selection, along with eats from the rotating seasonal menu. 501 N. 13th Street, (215) 238-1818, theprohibitiontaproom.com
- Sazon – Venezuelan cuisine comes alive at this homey BYOB. Hearty platters of steak, rice and beans; grilled tofu; and arepas stuffed with cheese draw dedicated fans made up of gluten-free eaters and vegetarians—all of whom end their meals with serious, house-made chocolate, including drinking chocolate. 941 Spring Garden Street, (215) 763-2500, sazonphilly.com
Culture, Shops & Galleries:
- Asian Arts Initiative – This community‐based arts center engages people to create art that explores the diverse experiences of Asian-Americans, addresses social context and impacts the community in a positive way. The organization offers a full calendar of events, including exhibitions, public performances, an out-of-school youth program and more. 1219 Vine Street, (215) 557-0455, asianartsinitiative.org
- Grizzly Grizzly – This small exhibition space is run by practicing artists who curate an engaging series of exhibitions and alternative events and actively look to promote artists who take risks. 319 N. 11th Street, 2nd floor, grizzlygrizzly.com
- Khmer Art Gallery – The first Cambodian art gallery on the East Coast, Khmer displays and sells contemporary art that draws from traditional practices. The collection includes painting, sculpture, textiles, pottery, traditional musical instruments and more and is open by appointment only, with free educational tours for individuals and groups. 319 N. 11th Street, (215) 922-5600, khmerartgallery.com
- Marginal Utility – Showcasing locally and internationally recognized emerging and established artists, Marginal Utility shares a building with Vox Populi, Tiger Strikes Asteroid and Grizzly Grizzly. A similarly fresh, contemporary aesthetic is at play here as well, with works on canvas, paper and new media. 319 N. 11th Street, 2nd floor, marginalutility.org
- Mio Culture – This studio focuses on sustainable design for home and office. Mio Culture’s collection includes customizable furniture, dimensional wall coverings, modern room dividers, acoustical panels and other stylish goods. 511 N. 13th Street, (888) 563-3916, mioculture.com
- PhilaMOCA – The Philadelphia Mausoleum of Contemporary Art is a gallery space and performance venue located in a former showroom for mausoleums and tombstones. The curators’ sense of humor comes out in their selection of film, music, performance and visual art events, such as an annual David Lynch-themed art show and retrospectives of public access television programs. 531 N. 12th Street, (267) 519-9651, philamoca.org
- Tiger Strikes Asteroid Philadelphia – In a few short years, this edgy artist-run space with a distinctly urban vibe has made its mark on the local art scene (there are also branches in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles). Works on view represent both local and national artists. 319A N. 11th Street, 2nd floor, Suite 2H, (484) 469-0319, tigerstrikesasteroid.com
- Vox Populi – A collectively run gallery founded in 1988, Vox Populi is devoted to experimental and under-represented contemporary art and comprises a rotating membership of artists of various genres. The Callowhill space hosts monthly exhibitions, gallery talks, performances, lectures and other programming. 319 N. 11th Street, 3rd floor, (215) 238-1236, voxpopuligallery.org
Nightclubs & Entertainment:
- Electric Factory – One of the larger venues in Philadelphia, this music hall draws local and national acts that attract crowds to the 2,600-person capacity venue. Standing room at stage level is typically all-ages, while a balcony with unbeatable views and a full bar accommodates the 21+ crowd. Past headliners include Kraftwerk, Miley Cyrus and Faith No More. 421 N. 7th Street, (215) 627-1332, electricfactory.info
- The Trestle Inn – A unique blend of 1960s- and 70s-inspired drink, music and entertainment pleases the diverse crowd here. Every Friday and Saturday, The Sound of Trestle DJs spin vinyl soul, funk and disco accompanied by the shimmy and shake of The Trestle Specials—mod go-go dancers. Famous for reintroducing the Classic Whiskey Sour to Philadelphia, the bar’s drink menu features 18 craft cocktails, 70+ domestic and international whiskies and 13 rotating craft beers on tap. 339 N. 11th Street, (267) 239-0290, thetrestleinn.com
- Underground Arts – Tucked into the burgeoning Callowhill neighborhood, this multi-use performance venue caters to an artistic and creative crowd. The genres of live music run the spectrum, which is one of Underground Art’s greatest assets. 1200 Callowhill Street, undergroundarts.org
- Union Transfer – Local and touring indie, punk, hardcore and hip-hop acts take to the acoustically awesome stage at this ultra-spacious venue, a scalable capacity room that can hold from 500-1,200 people depending on the stage configuration. Each concert finishes with a post-show happy hour. 1026 Spring Garden Street, (215) 232-2100, utphilly.com
VISIT PHILADELPHIA® is our name and our mission. As the region’s official tourism marketing agency, we build Greater Philadelphia’s image, drive visitation and boost the economy.
On Greater Philadelphia’s official visitor website and blog, visitphilly.com and uwishunu.com, visitors can explore things to do, upcoming events, themed itineraries and hotel packages. Compelling photography and videos, interactive maps and detailed visitor information make the sites effective trip-planning tools. Along with Visit Philly social media channels, the online platforms communicate directly with consumers. Travelers can also call and stop into the Independence Visitor Center for additional information and tickets.
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