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Top Bars In University City

Home to both the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University, University City has many bars in the area frequented by both college students and locals. See below for some of the best to visit while in University City.

City Tap House
3925 Walnut St.
Philadephia, PA 19104
(215) 662-0105

City Tap House has one of the largest tap lists in the city, with over 60 beers on draft, making it a great place for both those seeking a rare find or a city favorite. For great views of University City, head to its outdoor terrace, complete with fire pits to make a cold night more enjoyable. City Tap House is also a gathering place for sports fans to watch the game. There's a 120-seat dining room and open kitchen where you can enjoy upscale American pub food like mussels, burgers and brick oven pizza.

3945 Chestnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104
(215) 222-1657

Distrito serves authentic street food and tapas often found in Mexico City's federal district, known as "Distrito Federal." This vibrant and colorful bar is covered in bright pink and green paint, 600 wrestling masks (lucha libres) hang from the ceiling and, if you're lucky, you'll snag a seat inside its Mexican taxicab. With more than 100 tequilas at the bar, Distrito makes a great margarita and also has a sampling menu if you want to try a few different types of the liquor. Come in during happy hour for $5 tacos, $5 guacamole and $5 cocktails.

Drinker's West
3900 Chestnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104
(215) 397-4693

Drinker's West attracts a college crowd any day of the week with its close proximity to Penn and Drexel. Recently renovated, Drinker's has daily specials ($9 pitchers, $2.50 Yuengling Drafts), inexpensive food ($2 hot dogs, $1.50 tacos) and games, including billiards, ping pong and DJs on the weekends playing dance music. Drinker's West has multiple TVs and a huge HD projection screen for sports fan to watch the game.

Related: A Night Out in Philadelphia's Rittenhouse Square

229 S. 45th St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Fiume is a hidden gem sitting quietly (and sign-less) atop the Ethiopian restaurant Abyssina. Tiny and dimly lit, its huge selection of craft bottled beer and whiskey makes up for its lack of space. Sometimes the only sign that this place exists is the live music that is often heard wafting down into the streets. The Citywide Specials pack a crowd every Thursday night with their energetic old-time and original bluegrass music.

World Cafe Live
3025 Walnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104
(215) 222-1400

World Café Live was designed just for live music and, with two stage areas (Upstairs Live and Downstairs Live), live music is played here every night of the week. Downstairs Live is World Café Live's three-tiered music hall built with sight lines, acoustics and lighting in mind. Upstairs Live features its full-service restaurant and side stage for performances. You can either hang out near the bar or grab a table to try something off of its seasonally changing menu.

Related: A Night Out In Manayunk

Kelly Neilson is a freelance writer living and working in Philadelphia. Her work can be found on

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