Good news out of Center City today as the Uptown Beer Garden is back in action following a temporary shutdown, according to a report from the Insider. (Unfortunately, we're not sure the weather got the memo.) The pop-up debuted to healthy crowds on July 1, but lasted only about a week before being ordered closed by the Department of Licenses and Inspections over reported permit issues.
While the downtime may not have been planned or particularly welcome, the silver lining is that there should be some improvements in store:
While #UptownBeerGarden is temporarily closed we will be working on some bells/whistles like more seating, expanded drafts + more cocktails.— Bru Craft & Wurst (@BruPhilly) July 10, 2015
Namely, the beer garden has added an additional bar, table service, and more drink options, including flavored frozen margaritas.
If you're a drama hound (and who among us is not?), beer gardens are the unlikely gifts that just keep on giving. As seasonal pop-ups took off last year in dramatic fashion, they delighted al fresco drinkers but also angered many (but not all) competing brick-and-mortar bar owners, caused a lot of hand-wringing over whether the Liquor Control Board would allow the fun to continue, and sparked plenty of surprise when the PLCB decided to be pretty chill about the whole thing.
This year, more new beer gardens popped up, and found new problems to run into: In addition to being the target of neighborhood anti-gentrification protests, John Longacre's Point Breeze Pop-Up Beer Garden also ran afoul of L&I, whose ordered closure there led to a court battle. The Point Breeze Pop-up has since been allowed to reopen. In the cases of both of this year's temporary shutdowns, there existed confusion and disagreements as to which permits and processes were in fact required for these new-breed businesses, so it seems likely there will eventually be more to come in the beer garden saga.