Brian McManus, the music editor and a contributing food writer at Philadelphia Weekly, has a 168-page paperback in the works. Philadelphia’s Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in the City of Brotherly Love is a compilation of McManus’ seasoned experience helping people to “find out where to get wasted after visiting the Liberty Bell” (there’s something about national treasures that just makes me want to shotgun). McManaus came here in 2006 to not the most warming welcome, but has solidified himself as a man of journalistic and musical clout (we think; blog comment areas can be a battlefield) and a man who knows the dark and yeasty smell of a good dive bar. He spent one year going to 100 of Philly’s dives and came out, blinking into the light, one liver short and one book strong.
“To me, dive bars are like pornography: hard to define, but you know one when you see it,” says McManus. He was so overwhelmed with Philly’s dive bar selection, he added Dive Bar Crawl sidebars (broken down by neighborhood) to the book, mentioning some of our favorites: Oscars, McGlinchey’s, Pen & Pencil, Locust Bar, Locust Rendezvous and Bob & Barbara’s. But McManus has also introduced us to some new dive bars, not for the faint of heart, like Jack’s Famous Bar on Kensington and Alleghany and De Leo’s Cafe in Roxbourough.
Meet the hysterical McManus at Pen & Pencil on April 6. Time TBD.