Local 44.

Don’t look now, but the people you’d probably most want to open a bar in your neighborhood, if somebody was going to open a bar in your neighborhood, have their eyes on a neighborhood. A terrible nuisance bar is about to be transformed and the good beer frontier will push further into West Philadelphia.

I’ve just been authorized to give you folks the skinny:

I plan to email blast the world soon with similar details, but you can start early if you’d like! It’s public information as of riiiiiiiight…..NOW.

Brendan Hartranft (managing partner at Memphis Taproom) and Leigh Maida (head silverware polisher at Memphis Taproom) will be opening a “neighborhood beer bar and kitchen” [at the bar formerly known as Kelliann's at the corner of 44th and Spruce Streets.]

It will be called Local 44.

Local 44 will be a completely independent operation from Memphis Taproom, with very little overlap in concept, outside of the “neighborhood beer bar that we’d most like to hang out at” vibe.

Local 44 will focus on craft beer from around the world, with a nod to our favorite local breweries as well. We will have an extensive and exciting draught beer list. Our kitchen plans are small scale, in the neighborhood ‘pub grub’ vein. We’ll do a few dishes and we’ll do them well.

We’re getting our ducks in a row for an opening in the coming months.

Long-suffering Leigh adds, when asked if this is the opposite of the “Not In My Back Yard” (NIMBY) attitude:


It IS our backyard. Well, technically, our front yard. but yes. And my commute is about to get a lot shorter.

She also told me that it’s just her and Spanky, not the other partners involved in Memphis Taproom, and that she will be the day-to-day operations person. “Spanky “will be in charge of the beer, as usual, and will be on the scene,” she said, “but the bulk of his time will still be spent at Memphis.”

Hey, smash a collarbone, get ready to open a second bar,  whatever. Just another week.

You can’t even slow these folks down, much less stop them.

And that’s a good thing.

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