1800 Federal St, Corner 18th St.
Philadelphia, PA
(215) 334-BEER

Daily  11 AM to 2 AM
Brunch Saturday and Sunday
Web Site

Two-fisted bar food with sledge hammer flavors. Great beer selection. A quirky chef, Scott Schroeder, who refuses to cut sandwiches in half and who uses processed Krab instead of fresh crab just to piss off foodies. For all these reasons, one of my favorite lunch places that, thanks to their new patty melt , might become my favorite.

The patty melt is as good as it gets. LaFrieda ground beef grilled a perfect medium rare, sautéed onions and a blend of swiss and american cheese on grilled marbled rye. Twice grilled and, thanks to the patty, onions and cheeses, thrice greasy.

Onion rings  - beer battered and fried - come by the bowlful with a side of spicy ranch dressing.  The ranch dressing is good, but not needed. The onion rings stand on their own. 

Lots of great sandwiches.  Upper right, braised pork with boursin. Below that the Jack Bosch grilled cheese sandwich with tomato and red onion. According to the Philadelphia City Paper it is the same grilled cheese sandwich that two former generations of Schroeders downed regularly at a Detroit area golf course.

The place is called the American Sardine Bar so there has to be a sardine sandwich on the menu. Their's may be the ideal bar food. Chopped and marinated sardine, a slice of hard boiled egg and red onion. Only $2.00 a pop. Buy 'em by the bag full.

The American Sardine Bar is everyman's corner bar with a confident kitchen cooking up solid eating without even a soupcon of gastro pub cuteness.


April, 2012