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Passyunk Avenue

  • Restaurants
  • Fitzrovia
  • price 2 of 4
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Recommended

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

A Philadelphia-themed dive bar and restaurant.

Passyunk Avenue is a faithfully recreated American dive bar in the scruffy bit of Fitzrovia near Baker Street. Specifically, it’s named after an increasingly hip district in South Philadelphia called Passyunk Square, and it’s all very authentic: walls are covered with vintage sports paraphernalia and two TVs were showing rowdy baseball games while I was there.

Cheesesteaks are the inevitable focus – the restaurant was born of a food truck selling them – and mine was excellent: chopped ribeye steak topped with onions and laden with homemade four-cheese sauce (their version of ‘whiz’ – a processed cheese that’s popular in America). The beef was moist and peppery, but best of all was the ‘hoagie’ roll it was stuffed in: both cloud-light and satisfyingly chewy.

Then another great Philly classic: a tender roast pork roll packed with sautéed tenderstem broccoli, loads of grated parmiagiano cheese and some fresh, herby pesto.

Away from the buns, oregano- and parmesan-covered fries were textbook, and desserts of fresh-baked peanut-butter cookies and chocolate-chip cannoli were brilliantly refined sugar bombs.

'Authentic' can be a disingenuous term to chuck around when talking about restaurants, but Passyunk Avenue is nothing but – there were actual Philadelphians waxing enthusiastic about the food there on my visit. Sadly, its location will probably limit it to cult-fave status – but if you’re searching for a taste of the ‘real’ America, it’s hard to beat.

Written by
Tom Howells


80 Cleveland St
View Website
Tube: Great Portland St
Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £80.
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