It's that time of year again: Street's annual Best of Penn issue is here. You voted on your favorite food, drinks, shops, occasions and communities and the results are in. Click here to see the rest of our winners.

Best Off–Campus Bar Penn Choice: Howl at the Moon

Getting sick of the everyday on–campus nightlife scene? Howl at the Moon’s got you covered. Situated in the heart of Philadelphia, this a live music bar is just a short drive away and is the perfect place to be any night of the week. With high–energy live performances every night and a delicious assortment of drinks, Howl at the Moon will have you questioning why you ever tried staying on–campus in the first place. You’re sure to leave this off–campus spot with some unforgettable memories—and ones you’re sure to forget too.  

Address: 258 S 15th St., Philadelphia, PA 19102

Hours: Sun–Tues: Closed

Wed: 12 a.m.–2 a.m., 7 p.m.–2 a.m.
Thurs–Sat: 5 p.m.–2 a.m.

Second place: The Franklin Bar

Third place: Dolphin Tavern


Photo: Alec Druggan


Best Off–Campus Bar Street Choice: Hop Sing Laundromat

A spot for Philly’s exclusive and a hidden gem among a collection of crowded bars, Hop Sing Laundromat is a cocktail bar like no other. Seriously. With strict rules, ranging from an old ban on sneakers in the bar to a “no selfies allowed” policy, and a banned list of people 3,000 names long, Hop Sing brands itself as both one of the most controversial bars in Philadelphia and one of the most renowned. Its speakeasy style combined with its meticulously crafted drinks is sure to satisfy all your late–night cravings. Found on the bustling streets of Chinatown, the bar offers unique concoctions of drinks you won’t find anywhere, such as Vietnamese coffee and Smooth Ambler gin, and executes them with nothing less than perfection. 

Address: 1029 Race St., Philadelphia, PA 19107

Hours: Sun–Wed: Closed

Thurs–Sat: 5 p.m.–2 a.m.

Photo: Nick Joyner


Best Happy Hour Penn Choice: Distrito

Whether it’s Taco Tuesday or you’re just looking for bomb margaritas and a waiter that’s chill on IDs, Distrito is a Penn staple. It’s the perfect start to any night. You may find Distrito often turns into a night of its own. If you haven’t already, definitely stop by this classic campus hot spot. 

Address: 3945 Chestnut St., Philadelphia, PA 19104

Hours: Sun–Thurs: 11:30 a.m.–9 p.m.

Fri–Sat: 11:30 a.m.–10 p.m.
Happy Hour: 5 p.m.–7 p.m.

Second place: Copabanana

Third place: El Rey


Photo courtesy of Distrito


Best Happy Hour Street Choice: Assembly Rooftop

Have you ever heard of Assembly Rooftop? Street has, and it’s popping. Set on a rooftop with views spanning from the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul all the way to the iconic Philadelphia Museum of Art and beyond, this bar is known for its breathtaking views and brilliant cocktail concoctions. Next time you have an inkling to have a drink and take a drive, Septa, or walk from campus, check out this amazing rooftop bar.

Address: 1840 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Hours: Sun–Thurs: 4 p.m.–12 a.m.

Fri–Sat: 4 p.m.–2 a.m.
Happy Hour: 4 p.m.–6 p.m.

Photo: Michael Persico


Best Off–Campus Coffee Penn Choice: La Colombe

Located in the heart of charming Fishtown, La Colombe is a coffee brand known for its quality product as much as its atmosphere. The cafe is the perfect spot for studying or a casual brunch. This coffee lover’s paradise could only improve on its proximity to campus. If you decide to make the short trek, don’t miss out on their nitrogen cold brew.

Address: 1335 Frankford Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19125

Hours: Sun–Thurs: 7 a.m.–7 p.m.

Fri–Sat: 7 a.m.–9 p.m.

Second place: Green Line Cafe

Third place: Good Karma


Photo: Sam Holland


Best Off–Campus Coffee Street Choice: Chapterhouse Cafe & Gallery

When on–campus coffee shops get crowded, look no further than Chapterhouse Cafe & Gallery for your caffeine (and studying) needs. While this is the perfect place to break out your lo–fi chill studying beats, take some time to appreciate the cool art installations that make Chapterhouse cooler than your average cup of joe. Chapterhouse opened in 2005 and offers a wide range of organic, fair–trade coffee and baked goods, in addition to an array of sandwiches. Even if you’re not hungry, the large brick fireplace and cozy seating offer the perfect getaway on crisp fall afternoons. In the spring, study by the floor–to–ceiling windows for bright sunshine and blooming cherry blossoms. 

Address: 620 S 9th St., Philadelphia, PA 19104 

Hours: Sun–Sat: 7 a.m.–10 p.m.


Photo: Caroline Gibson


Best On–Campus Coffee Penn Choice: Starbucks

Starbucks. A classic. How could you ever argue that this giant was anything but the top of the caffeinated beverage hierarchy? This coffee shop is a shining beacon in the otherwise dull drudgery of a midterm–filled life.

Come to Starbucks to find everything you could possibly ever desire in a coffee. You can celebrate the start of autumn with some seasonally–inspired drinks. As we transition to colder temperatures, you can continue to enjoy your maple and pumpkin–flavored drink and even sprinkle in a flavorful hot chocolate peppermint mocha to your order. Combat some of that fall semester sadness with these cups of joy!

Address: 3901 Walnut St., Philadelphia, PA 19104

Hours: Mon–Fri: 5:30 a.m.–12 a.m.

Sat: 6 a.m.–12 a.m.
Sun: 5:30 a.m.–10:30 p.m.

Second place: United by Blue

Third place: Saxbys


Photo: Sophia Dai


Best On–Campus Coffee Street Choice: WilCaf

You can’t help but fall in love with this adorable coffee shop. Every student at Penn needs to drop by Williams Hall and check this location out at some point, because it truly is a gem at Penn. First of all, it’s entirely student run. Slow claps for everyone who works here, because that truly sounds impossible to do on top of coursework. Second, the coffee can’t be beat—rich, full flavors and a wonderful, distinct scent emanate from every drink you consume. They have a classic, delicious black drip coffee if that’s more up your alley, as well as a variety of other drinks ready to be brewed up to suit all different tastes. What makes the drinks at WilCaf so damn good? Must be all the love that goes into every cup.

Address: 255 S 36th St., Philadelphia, PA 19104

Hours: Mon–Thurs: 8:30 a.m.–6:30 p.m.

Fri: 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.

Photo: Autumn Powell


Best BYO Penn Choice: Ken’s Seafood

Penn loves Ken’s. Why? One word: karaoke. Serving family style Chinese food, Ken’s Seafood is the perfect spot for a birthday party, club outing, or pregame. For a very reasonable price, you can have a full meal while singing Britney Spears’s “Toxic,” as long as you can figure out how to hold your Franzia, your spring roll, and the mic all at the same time. And if you play your cards right, you may even succeed in stealing a live lobster on your way out.

Address: 1004 Race St., Philadelphia, PA 19107

Hours: Sun – Sat: 4:30 p.m. – 3 a.m.

Second place: Koreana

Third place: Banana Leaf


Photo: Carson Kahoe


Best BYO Street Choice: La Viola

A posh Italian spot in the middle of Center City, La Viola is the ideal BYO spot for your club gathering, roommate dinner, or wine–soaked date night. Featuring delicious cuisine in both the Bistro and Ovest sections of the restaurant, it’s perfect for any day of the week.

Address: 253 S 16th St., Philadelphia, PA 19102

Hours: Sun: 4 p.m.–10 p.m.

Mon: Closed

Tues–Thurs: 11 a.m.–3 p.m., 5 p.m.–10 p.m.
Fri: 11 a.m.–3 p.m., 5 p.m.–11 p.m.
Sat: 5 pm.–11 p.m. 

Photo: Sophia Dai

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