If you’re a music lover and have been in search of a chill lounge with a great sound system and atmosphere, here’s a new option coming your way. Poised to open in the coming weeks (date TBA), 48 Record Bar is a high-tech listening room and cocktail bar perched above Old City’s Sassafras (48 S. 2nd).
This new venue is the brainchild of both Founder Donal McCoy and Creative Director Joey Sweeney, and is set to bring a completely new and unique experience to the city upon its debut. With seating for 37, this second-floor space will feature an “ultra-high fidelity audiophile vinyl sound system along with an elevated beverage program, small plates, and a robust calendar of events, offering a unique escape while serving as a community hub for vinyl enthusiasts, according to Sassafras and 48 Record Bar Co-Owner Donal McCoy,” the venue states.
Inspired by intimate audiophile bars prevalent in cities such as Tokyo and London, Philadelphians can look forward to events and activations such as listening parties, special guest selectors, album and cocktail pairings, record release parties, a Hi-Fi Tea on Sunday series, live performances, live podcast tapings, and more, curated and produced by 48 Record Bar Creative Director Joey Sweeney.
“It’s a wonderful and rewarding process taking an idea or a sketch on a bevnap through to fruition,” McCoy said. “In the case of 48 Record Bar, the bevnap sketch evolved over time, as did the vision for the room. At every step, we had the support and input of a talented and creative team. This end result is the sum total of all of that.”
For small plates, guests will enjoy dishes such as Classic Deviled Eggs, Welsh Rarebit, Seasonal Finger Sandwiches, and Traditional Afternoon Tea (monthly). In addition, 48 Record Bar will spin featured records nightly while mixing 16 signature cocktails, and serve a robust selection bottled beer, global wines, and more, from the 12-seat bar. Initial offerings include:
- Industry Negroni — Fernet Branca, Green Chartreuse, Campari, Orange Bitters
- Mexico City — Del Maguey Vida, Cynar, Byrrh, Luxardo, Flamed Orange
- Bond Girl – Barrel-Finished Blue Coat Gin, Cocchi Americano, Bitters
- Laverne — Tito’s Vodka, Grenadine, R&W Cherry, Luxardo, Lemon & Lime Juice, Seltzer
- 30th Century Man — Espresso Infusion, Del Maguey Vida, Maple Syrup, Orange & Aztec Bitters
While no membership is required, 48 Record Bar offers an optional tiered-membership program designed to encourage deep listening and community-building among music lovers in the city and region. Members, for instance, enjoy a custom-selected Record Of The Month plus first access to all ticketed events, a standing invite to Member’s Only Nights, and other exclusive perks. More information and registration is available at 48RecordBar.com.
“With both the listening room format as well as the different styles of programming, we’re looking to always make this place feel like a little zone for invitation and discovery, Sweeney said. “Coming to 48 should always feel like a place you’re going to check out something new or hear something a different way than maybe you’ve heard it before — like an impossibly beautiful house show.”
McCoy has been working on 48 Record Bar for several years and has taken great care with the aesthetics and ambiance. Cocktail and record enthusiasts will enjoy a plush environment with rich curtains and custom upholstery, ornate wallpaper, and intimate lighting that works in tandem with the sound system to create a one-of-a-kind listening experience, while also offering a space for conversation.
Hours of operation are Wednesday through Sunday from 5pm – 2am, and reservations will be made available via Resy in the coming weeks.
Sat. Dec. 2: South Fellini’s HOAGIEWAVE
Thurs. Dec. 7: 30 Years of Wu Tang’s 36 Chambers w/ Serious Rap Sh*t
Wed. Dec. 13: Liner Notes: The 48 Record Bar Reading Series
Fri. Dec. 15: Vinyl Tap 215