“You know when you walk into Monk’s and you have to walk through the three doors, it’s like entering a vortex,” says Tomme Arthur, co-founder of California’s The Lost Abbey and Port Brewing Company.
Many brewers and beer obsessives know those doors well. You leave the busy streets of Philadelphia—about three blocks from central Rittenhouse Square—through the first door. The street noise quiets and the murmur of talking, laughing, and clinking glassware materializes. The second door opens to a bustling, wood-paneled room that feels of another age. Yellowed walls are obscured by people sipping from chalices or Lambic tumblers on the lower half of the bar, and an eclectic collection of custom and vintage Belgian-branded beer signage on the upper half. To reach the third door, you must squeeze down an aisle of pew-like booths, fragrant with beer-boiled mussels and spilled Abbey Ales, and around a corner, where you cross under a Rochefort sign into the back bar. There is no natural light this deep inside, and the Philadelphia streets are forgotten completely...
(Excerpted from Mandy Naglich's story about the history of Monk's Cafe for Good Beer Hunting, with photos by Daniel Knoll.)
Read the full article on Good Beer Hunting, here.