Inside Second District Brewing in South Philadelphia

Second District Brewing Co., 1939 S Bancroft St.

The city's brewing scene picks up a new entrant with Feb. 16's opening of Second District Brewing Co., a South Philadelphia brew pub run by Curt Decker, former owner of Center City's late Nodding Head, with backing from developer John Longacre, whose holdings include South Philadelphia Tap Room and American Sardine Bar.

Named after its City Council district, the brew pub is set up in an old saw-and-tool-sharpening shop at the corner of McKean and Bancroft Streets. (Address for your Uber/Lyft is 1939 S. Bancroft St. - that's at McKean, and Bancroft is a narrow street between 15th and 16th.)

The 7-bbl brew house is upstairs and is visible from the old-fashioned brew pub, made from reclaimed materials, on street level behind roll-up doors.

Brewer Ben Potts, whose resume includes Dock Street, Dogfish Head, and Tired Hands, will have about eight beers on tap from the start. See a partial list here. The house beers will be offered with Pennsylvania wines and cocktails made with Pennsylvania spirits.

Potts' beer is not the Nodding Head that you may remember from its home on Sansom Street. (That brand is being contract-brewed by Philadelphia Brewing Co.)

Potts' creative varieties include an IPA brewed with tea sourced from Premium Steap, and a Vietnamese coffee stout. Beers are priced by the pour - $3 for 4 ounces, $4.50 for 8 ounces, and $7 for 16 ounces.

Chef Doreen DeMarco, doing double duty at American Sardine Bar, has devised a menu of simple, scratch-made food, including snacks, house-made charcuterie (a beer brat), pickles, and sandwiches. "Things you want to eat with beer," DeMarco said. She also makes a vegan Italian sausage as well as vegan pork rinds.

Vegan pork rinds?

Vegan pork rinds have no pork, of course. They're not even rinds. They're rice puffed into a pork-rind shape and seasoned with chili lime.

DeMarco also makes a conventional pork rind. Longacre said DeMarco asked Decker to taste both side by side. "He picked the vegan one," Longacre said.

Hours will be 11 a.m. to midnight daily.

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