Additional pictures and story will be published in my Philly Mag.com column today by 11AM.
Originally called The Bell in Hand, the tavern opened in 1860 inside a small row house. The laborers who frequented the place just called it McGillin's after William McGillin, the Irish immigrant who owned the bar and raised his 13 children upstairs. The nickname stuck and the tavern grew to encompass the oyster house next door, the back alley/washroom, and the McGillin's house. On August 31, 1901"Pa" McGillin died and "Ma" McGillin took over running the restaurant. No push-over, "Ma" had a list of troublemakers who weren't allowed into McGillin's. McGillin's survived Prohibition and Ma ran it until her death in 1937 at the age of 90. The McGillin's daughter, Mercedes McGillin Hooper, who grew up above the tavern, sold it to brothers and experienced barkeeps, Henry Spaniak and Joe Shepaniak in 1958. (That's not a mistake, the brothers actually spelled their name differently.) Keeping it in the family, Henry's daughter, Mary Ellen Spaniak Mullins and her husband, Chris Mullins have run the restaurant since 1993. Mary Ellen's sister, Kate Newcomer, (another of Henry's daughters) is the general manager. And, the legacy of hospitality continues with Mary Ellen and Chris' son, Chris Mullins, Jr., representing the family's third generation to manage the historic tavern.
David and Irene Baker
Bill Gerhman and his Godchild Jacob.
When Irish Eyes Are Smiling....
Getting Flyered up
Bruce & Deanne, Scott & Becky. Had never been to McGillins before, read about the event on the Philly Beer Week site.
Tom Hickey and Roz Fulton
Chris Mullins Jr speaks to the guests and talks a little bit about
The Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians, where some of last nights proceeds went to
Erin Buclinus, Tim Ertell and Mollie Donovan
Winning most original or most creative black tie is Camille and Chris Smith, who were inspired by the old fashion McGillin's post cards. And if you've been there you know what we are talking about.
Meg and Mike Sokorai, JoAnn Bogart, GM Holiday Inn , Ruth Lennon
For the 150th anniversary, McGillin's created its own 1860 IPA, brewed by Stoudts. McGillin's honors Pa McGillin's commitment to serving fine beer, with 29 taps pouring the region's best brews. McGillin's also serves an eclectic mix of stouts, ales, lagers and pilsners from Europe (New Castle Brown, Stella Artois, Hoegaarden, Paulaner: Hefe-Weizen