I dropped by The Institute at 12th and Green in Philly for the first time today. I wanted to have a drink with a friend, talk a little treason, and she suggested this brand-new place: good call. It's in the Brandywine neighborhood, a new one for me, but as I parked and looked around...well, if I had the money I'd be buying a few houses and lots -- Northern Liberties and Fishtown are practically around the block, and this place is ripe for upscaling. I think Charlie and Heather Collazo are getting in almost as early as Paul and William did with Standard Tap and Johnny Brenda's.
The joint? Not real big...for now. Charlie told us he has plans: a basement kitchen ("about two months," he said, because the low ceiling necessitates busting through the concrete floor first), a second floor lounge ("with a DJ booth, sofas"), and, down the road a bit, a rooftop deck with a cedar fence and I kid you not, a waterfall. Sounds like a summertime place to be.
Meanwhile, it's comfy, though the bar itself is kinda small. Taps were excellent: two Founder's (IPA and Rye; I got the IPA, it tasted like fish), PBC Walt Wit and Rowhouse, Yards ESA, Bar Harbor Blueberry (yeah, I had one, it was hot), Sly Fox Phoenix, Hennepin, Bear Republic RIS, an Ace Pear, a PBR tap, and the ubiquitous Lager.
Worth the trip? Maybe not on its own, at least until the kitchen opens and Charlie doubles the taps, but if you're in the area, you ought to stop by.