Philly’s bars and restaurants are stepping up their Halloween game with themed events, blowout parties, and family-friendly fun leading up to All Hallows’ Eve and on the spooky day itself.
The bars and restaurants of East Passyunk Avenue are hosting a beer crawl on October 25. Tickets ($6.66) get bar-hopping witches and warlocks craft brews for $4 at 17 spots, including Birra, Bing Bing Dim Sum, ITV, and POPE, plus a witch hat to wear. Look for food specials, too.
Is there anything better than spooky tales and candy to celebrate Halloween? Shane Confectionary combines the two with a tour that take visitors through America’s oldest continuously operated confectionery to learn about tormented villains and magical candy cures, all while sampling themed sweets including a dark and stormy bon bon, drinking chocolate, and an edible protective amulet. It’s $25.
October 27 and 28
For family-friendly fun with an international spin, Fairmount Park’s Shofuso Japanese House hosts a weekend-long celebration of Japan’s monsters, ghosts, and mythology. Food truck Dump-N-Roll will be there with classic and modern twists on dumplings and egg rolls.
Those looking for a party the Saturday before Halloween should head to Morgan’s Pier for its open bar costume party hosted by Brittany Lynn, “The Don” of Philly’s Drag Mafia. It’s all-you-can-drink for $40 (or $50 at the door).
Trestle Inn is always up to something fun and Halloween is no exception. Its party the Saturday before Halloween features a screening of King Kong vs. Godzilla, disco tunes on vinyl, a free King Kong Cocktail, and of course, go-go dancers. It’s $10 in advance and $15 at the door.
Rooster Soup’s monthly late night breakfast karaoke event gets a Halloween twist with this “Skaraoke” costume party. Philly’s favorite karaoke leader, Sara Sherr, will be there, along with Big Gay Ice Cream making ice cream waffles and boozy milkshakes.
This family-friendly event takes over East Passyunk Avenue with Halloween activities for the kids, a costume contest, trick-or-treating at neighborhood shops, and fall-themed food. Chhaya Café will have a Thanksgiving waffle, P'unk Burger is making pumpkin speculoos cookie butter milkshakes, and Fuel has a Thanksgiving panini planned.
South Street Headhouse District is throwing its annual family-friendly Halloween festival with contests galore, including a jack-o’-lantern contest, a pumpkin pie eating contest, costume contests, wagon rides, a hay bale maze, and trick-or-treating at neighborhood stores. Bring gently used winter coats and shoes to donate to the Broad Street Ministry. The night before (October 27), the neighborhood organization is screening three movies outside at Headhouse Square: It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, Young Frankenstein, and Night of the Living Dead.
Atlantic City’s Tropicana is serving up seven days of chocolate the week before Halloween. The casino-hotel’s restaurants have specials featuring the sweet stuff and its bars are shaking up chocolate cocktails, like the $5 Yoohoo Shooter at Boogie Nights.
Through October 28
Stay safe on Mischief Night at Manatawny Still Works’ new bottle shop and tasting room with a special visit from Ari Miller of 1732 Meats. He’s bringing a selection of his charcuterie to pair with Manatawny’s spirits.
El Rey is celebrating Halloween and Day of the Dead with a menu of scorpion tacos, beef tongue veracruzana, blood sausage with squid, worm chilapitas, and other themed dishes, available from Mischief Night through Saturday.
October 30-November 4
On Halloween night, Kensington Quarters general manager Tim Kweeder and Amy Hartranft of Prohibition Taproom join forces for a cider party. They’ll have ciders and small plates from several chefs and restaurants, including KQ’s Damon Menapace, Ari Miller (Food Underground/Watkins Drinkery), Nich Bazik (The Good King Tavern), Sam Jacobson (Stargazy), Mike O' Lone (Vernick Food and Drink), Pelago, and Kyle McCormick (ITV). It’s pay-as-you-go and the party goes until midnight.
Fun fact: Bram Stoker wrote some of the original notes for the novel Dracula on Bellevue Stratford (now the Hyatt at The Bellevue) stationary. The hotel’s restaurant, XIX, is having fun with this legacy on Halloween with a three-course dinner and screening of the original 1931 film. Dinner is on-theme too, featuring Skull Island prawns, a “bleeding” white chocolate mousse, and candy corn–infused vodka. It’s $65 per person.
Bitburger Brewery will be hand at Frankford Hall’s Halloween costume party, pouring liter drafts for $10. A local DJ will spin all night and the best costumes win Starr Restaurants gift cards.
Dogs are invited to Bar Amis at the Navy Yard for a Halloween happy hour with Dogfish Head beers on special, $2 chorizo corn dogs, $2 chicken cutlet sliders, and five for $5 honey garlic wings. For cocktails, the bar is doing a whiskey-based Graveyard Smash. There will be a costume contest for the pups (enter by donating to the Pennsylvania SPCA, which will be onsite) and games.
The bar that celebrates every holiday with themed drinks and fun has “Scaraoke” (costumed karaoke with prizes) planned for Halloween. McGillin’s will be serving pumpkin-spiked hot chocolate, pumpkin martinis, and something called a Pumpkin Bomb. Get in the spirit: It’s rumored that the ghost of Ma McGillin shows up to check on her bar from time to time.
The new Walnut Street Café will throw it back to classic television days on Halloween with the staff dressing up as characters from The Addams Family and The Munsters. The Addams Family movie will be playing on the mezzanine and diners are encouraged dress for the theme to win a $150 gift certificate.