About City Tavern

Chef Staib is well known from twelve time Emmy® Award winning program A Taste of History®, where he brings culinary history to your home. Well it all started over 24 years ago, Staib brought his philosophy to City Taverns well prepared recipes based on tried and true traditions, not trends, made fresh daily from scratch. City Tavern has boasted the finest celebrations since 1773, the location of the first Independence Day celebration called "the most genteel tavern in America", by John Adams and the first unofficial "White House.” Over 230 years of hospitality, City Tavern has been the centerpiece of affairs immortalized in history. An evening at City Tavern will be remembered. Imagine sampling pepperpot soup, colonial turkey pot pie, roast duckling, Thomas Jefferson's sweet potato biscuits paired with ales which are the ales of the revolution made from Washington & Franklin's recipes -- all served by costumed wait staff.

138 S 2nd St
Philadelphia, PA 19106
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
American, Comfort Food, Wild Game

Hours of Operation:
Lunch
Daily 11:30 am–2:45 pm
Dinner
Mon–Thu, Sun 3:00 pm–9:00 pm
Fri, Sat 4:00 pm–10:00 pm

Cross Street:
2nd & Walnut Streets

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(215) 413-1443

Website:
http://www.citytavern.com/

Entertainment:
City Tavern's service staff is dressed in 18th century fashions. Enjoy period music played by our resident musician Mark Carroll every Tuesday- Sunday night from 5:30pm.

Parking Details:
Parking: A city operated parking garage is located on 2nd Street between Chestnut & Walnut, look for the movie theatre marquis. Or less than a block away a community valet is available nearby where Dock & Walnuts intersect (in front of Positano Coast).

Public Transit:
The Market-Frankford "El" has a stop at 2nd and Market Streets as well as the 21 & 42 bus lines drops at our door

Executive Chef:
Chef Walter Staib

Additional:
Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Chef Staib would like to invite you to celebrate your next occasion at City Tavern.

City Tavern Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.3

service

4.3

ambience

4.5

value

4.1

Noise

Quiet

85% would recommend it to a friend

Authentic (98)
Special Occasion (88)
Creative Cuisine (58)
See All
Comfort Food (57)
Good for Anniversaries (56)
Good for a Date (53)
Neighborhood Gem (51)
Quiet Conversation (51)
Cozy (46)
Romantic (45)
Good for Groups (44)
Good for Birthdays (43)
Great for Lunch (41)
Fun (40)
Fit for Foodies (38)
Worth the Drive (38)
Great Beer (30)
Casual (29)
Seasonal (27)
Local Ingredients (26)
Kid-friendly (20)
Handcrafted Cocktails (20)
Sunday Lunch (20)
Pre/post Theatre (19)
Business Meals (18)
Scenic View (17)
Notable Wine List (14)
Tasting Menu (11)
Healthy (10)
People Watching (9)
Afternoon Tea (8)
Good Vegetarian Options (8)
Live Music (6)
Great for Outdoor Dining (5)
Gluten Free Options (4)
Late-night Find (4)
Waterfront (3)
Afternoon Coffee (3)
Great for Brunch (3)
Hot Spot (3)
Organic (3)
Bar Seating (3)
Disabled Access (2)
Happy Hour (1)
Paleo Friendly (1)
Quick Bite (1)
Spicy (1)
Sort by
S
1635 reviews
Loading Reviews ...

 
·Dined 4 days ago

We loved the historical menu in this historic setting. It was so easy to imagine the founding fathers there and the food was absolutely amazing.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Great for Lunch, Afternoon Tea, Business Meals, Quiet Conversation, Sunday Lunch, Fun, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 4 days ago

As we arrived we were greeted and taken to our seat within seconds. The abeyance of the building was great with a live violin player strolling the dining room floor. When we sat down at our table our server greeted us with great pleasure and made as feel very welcomed. He proceeded to tell us all about the menu and poured us each a glass of champagne. I have to say when the food came out I was shocked at the portion sizes were so large and delicious. I would highly recommend this place to anyone who enjoys a great night out with fantastic food and atmosphere. I can’t wait to return for a second time. Thank you for a great experience.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined 5 days ago

A great night out for Valentine’s Day. There was champagne, roses, musicians, creative cocktails, and good food. There was variety in the menu and our waiter was superb. Finally, the violinist played for hours.

Tags: People Watching, Pre/post Theatre, Handcrafted Cocktails, Authentic, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined 5 days ago

We enjoyed our Valentine Luncheon. The food was good and the service was excellent. Other employees were helpful and pleasant.

Tags: Comfort Food, Seasonal, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Dallas)·Dined on February 11, 2018

You should know about what you're getting in to. The place is clearly marketed as a way to experience the food and dining of the Founders ... but that's about it. The food was okay, but expensive. The service was mediocre. They dress in period clothing and there are several interesting touches (traditional glassware, etc.). It's fun to be in the building and imagining yourself among the Founders. But as a meal (especially one nearing $30-$40 a person), it ain't there.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience4
service2
value3

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on February 10, 2018

What a great taste of history! Good was great and setting was spectacular. Great addition to a visit to Philly

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 10, 2018

Everything and everyone were great! Service was prompt but not rushed. Nice variety of entree dishes with things you don’t see at most restaurants. Only thing I don’t like about setup was lack of a bathroom on each floor. Couple of entrees were $30+ That’s a little more than I like to spend if I also get appetizer, dessert and a drink or 2 . Would definitely come back if I return to Philadelphia

Tags: Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on February 3, 2018

The City Tavern never disappoints! Be sure to order the delicious corn chowder!

Tags: Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Atlantic City)·Dined on February 2, 2018

Rack of lamb was tender and absolutely delicious. Love the ambiance and the water goblets were a wonderful touch. Alyssa was awesome. We will return.

Tags: Romantic, Authentic, Cozy, Special Occasion, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New England)·Dined on February 2, 2018

Capped off a day of touring historic sites in Philadelphia with a dinner in the famed City Tavern. It did not disappoint. I knew before going in that I would be ordering the Turkey Pot Pie and it was even better than I imagined. My daughter had the salmon and it was also cooked perfectly. Our server was personable and provided great service as well as a nice history of the building and the room we were seated in. I would definitely recommend!

Tags: Good for a Date, Kid-friendly, Fit for Foodies, Great Beer, Good for Groups, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
·Dined on February 2, 2018

City Tavern has been our go-to spot for visiting friends and family; however, this will change following last Thursday's visit. We made a reservation for 8pm to bring our parents, who were visiting for a long weekend. The details that had made past visits so enjoyable were absent during this experience. Our server was rude, and rushed us along. Drinks were slow to arrive, we were not brought any bread, and we were presented with the bill before being asked if we wanted desert or coffee. It definitely seemed that the server was keen to be finished for the evening. Two of the entrees were cold, and the food was not as good as it has been on other occasions. We did have a great chat with the harpist who was performing in the foyer, but we are unlikely to return in the foreseeable future.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience2
service1
value1

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 31, 2018

A memorable Philly experience for out of town colleagues. The beer brewed from the Founding Fathers' recipes is terrific, and food - great. Turkey pot pie and lobster pie were out of this world. Ham and cabbage soup and crab cakes were also terrific; and my colleague enjoyed the champagne shrub! Nice ambience.

Tags: Romantic, Business Meals, Good for Groups, Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem, Great Beer
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 27, 2018

Horrible food and service...spend your money elsewhere! If you want to see the place for its historic value go in for a cup of coffee and leave!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience2
service2
value1

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on January 27, 2018

Best in class option to have a wonderful meal in Philadelphia as an authentic menu and under the guidance of a famous chef. Do not miss the site!
OAP

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Quiet Conversation, Good for Groups, Local Ingredients, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 26, 2018

We went as part of restaurant week. Food was good , service was great. Main course was large so brought home almost half of the meal.

Tags: Authentic, Good for Groups, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 26, 2018

Great food. Great service. Love the atmosphere. This is a great place for a first date.

Tags: Good for a Date, Good for Groups
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Western NC)·Dined on January 26, 2018

excellent menu choices but food without flavor. have never used salt in my life but this is first time I ever thought this needs salt and lots of it while eating. portions are large and plates are beautifully prepared with lots of color but no flavor at all. perhaps it is because it is recreating the food of the time.friendly staff with attentive service.

Tags: Authentic, Seasonal, Cozy, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience4
service3
value2

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 25, 2018

Interesting. If you want to dine and get a little history lesson at the same time to the sound of a harp by candlelight this is the place for you.

Tags: Good Vegetarian Options, Creative Cuisine, Fun, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Romantic, Scenic View, Good for Anniversaries, Quiet Conversation, Cozy, Pre/post Theatre, Authentic, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on January 25, 2018

We really enjoy the 18th century colonial atmosphere and recipes at City Tavern. Even though there weren’t many other families (probably due to time of day), our big family had a great time, and the kids enjoyed their colonial turkey pot pie and raspberry shrub. Can’t wait to go back.

Tags: Special Occasion, Great for Lunch, Seasonal, Kid-friendly, Sunday Lunch, Fun, Great Beer, Authentic, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 24, 2018

The food was inconsistent- veal was tough, vegetables were cold, appetizers were exceptional.

Tags: Business Meals, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service2
value3

 
 (Greensboro)·Dined on January 24, 2018

I had read favorable reviews -- somewhere --- & so decided to go. The ambiance is nice but the food is only satisfactory. I had the veal & herb sausage which had minor flavor.

Tags: Comfort Food, Business Meals, Local Ingredients
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience4
service4
value3

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 23, 2018

Our second time here, and again, I want to go back...a revelation in cuisine...who knew that Benjamin Franklin ate Tofu? Who knew there was a special Martha Washington recipe for a delicious chocolate cake? Love the Period costumes...we'll be back, I feel sure.

Tags: Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries, Local Ingredients, Authentic, Fit for Foodies, Good Vegetarian Options, Seasonal, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Atlantic City)·Dined on January 23, 2018

The City Tavern fit in perfectly with our author's night at the Museum of the American Revolution. Our party of 7 teachers, and it being Restaurant Week, was great for our budget and everyone commented on the quality and variety of menu choices. Being in that historical setting was a good introduction for the talk on Washington and Arnold given by Nathaniel Philbrick at the Museum.

Tags: Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Casual, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Great Beer, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 21, 2018

We were here for Restaurant week. Very high quality food and great beers here. We had crab cakes and mushroom toast, both very tasty. Then Both of us decided on the Chicken Breast Mount Vernon. The chicken was very crispy and had a wonderful flavor to it, especially with the crab on top. Vegetables were cooked just right.
Ed, our server, delighted us with the history of the restaurant and the area, a special treat as I was a history teacher. Kudos to him for adding that touch.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Sunday Lunch, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 21, 2018

We always went at least once a year for dinner
The food (meal) had no flavor
Very disappointed
We probably won't be back
Too expensive for the lack of flavor.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service4
value3

 
 (Minneapolis)·Dined on January 20, 2018

Absolutely loved the establishment. Food was great.

Tags: Late-night Find, Cozy, Fun, Good for Groups
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 20, 2018

Have been celebrating our Anniversary at City Tavern for 15 years. Always a fabulous dinner !!!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 20, 2018

We had friends in from out of town, everyone enjoyed their meal. This restaurant has a wonderful colonial atmosphere. We enjoy coming to City Tavern a few times a year and have never had a bad experience.

Tags: Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Poconos)·Dined on January 20, 2018

this is our winter anniversary stop. a personal tradition. never disappointed. if we only have one night in town, we'll be here.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Special Occasion, Afternoon Coffee, Tasting Menu, Romantic, Quiet Conversation, Good for Anniversaries, Great Beer, Cozy, Authentic, Handcrafted Cocktails, Creative Cuisine, Casual, Worth the Drive, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Local Ingredients
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service4
value4

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 20, 2018

Food was great, waiter was very pleasant and attentive. Kitchen was very slow.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 20, 2018

This restaurant has great historical value and ambiance. The food was awesome and so was the service. I would recommend it to all my friends.

Tags: Scenic View, Good for Groups, Cozy, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 19, 2018

Great food and great service! Definitely recommend a visit.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 19, 2018

I heard great things about City Tavern, and it did not disappoint. The food was delicious (ordered off of the Restaurant Week menu), especially the cobbler (picture). The employees were very nice and helpful, especially when I was buying one of Chef Staib's books after dinner. Though it is a bit pricey, every penny is worth it.

Tags: Comfort Food, Worth the Drive, Romantic, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Quiet Conversation, Good for Birthdays, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 18, 2018

Went during Restaurant Week for lunch, was a great place and food was wonderful. Hope to go back for dinner.

Tags: Authentic, Healthy, Good for Birthdays, Casual, Good for a Date, Local Ingredients, Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Good for Anniversaries, Great for Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Atlantic City)·Dined on January 18, 2018

As always we had a great time at City Tavern. The service was great as was the food. On this occasion it happened to be restaurant week in Philadelphia and we took advantage of the special 3 course menu. Sometimes the "special" restaurant week menu it not that special, but at City Tavern it was excellent!!! Love this place and will defiantly be back. Thanks City Tavern for a great afternoon.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion, Great for Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 15, 2018

The temperature of the room was too low. The fireplaces in the room could be upgraded to accomodate a gas flame thereby adding to the ambience and the "old world" atmosphere they try to portray. The food was quite unappealing. I guess it wold be good for tourists.

Tags: Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience1
service3
value1

 
 (Atlantic City)·Dined on January 15, 2018

Generous portions. Delicious food. Excellent service. My only complaint was it was almost as chilly inside the restaurant as it was outside on a January day. The atmosphere was authentic colonial, and there was a fireplace in the room we were seated in. A warm fire would have been perfect, or at least turn the heat up to a comfortable temperature.

Tags: Authentic, Handcrafted Cocktails, Great for Lunch, Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service5
value5

 
 (Richmond)·Dined on January 15, 2018

Truly enjoyed the restaurant week menu and flight of colonial beers.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 14, 2018

We arrived 30 minutes late due to a sporting event going into overtime. Once we arrived, we were not greeted by anyone and the gentleman playing the harp had to stop and go and get someone to seat us ruining the ambiance. When the person came to seat us, she never addressed us by name, was very rude and just sat us at a table. The meal and waiter were excellent but we were let down by the way we were seated.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Romantic, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service2
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 14, 2018

Very enjoyable, food was delicious, portion was generous, service was excellent

Tags: Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

Report this review as inappropriate?

If you believe this review should be removed from OpenTable, please let us know and someone will investigate.