May 20, 2022 - Food and Drink

Inside Philly's new magic bar, the Cauldron Magical Pub


"The bubbling shot of death" featuring lemon juice, sugar syrup, Midori and Bimber vodka. Photo: Taylor Allen/Axios

A new fantasy-themed bar is decked out and ready for its debut in Philadelphia next week.

  • The Cauldron Magical Pub will soon bring your classic drinks of choice — but with a magic wand, fire and spells — to the Gayborhood.

What's happening: The new bar from South Jersey native Matthew Cortland and his co-founder David Duckworth will be the second to open in the U.S., after the New York City location.

  • There are four others in London and Edinburgh, Scotland.

How it works: The bar provides you with two options, a walk-in cocktail bar and the main event.

  • Expect molecular mixology at the walk-in bar, plus fantasy-themed food.
  • The main event is a $39.99 ticketed adventure in which customers can make their own "magical potion" cocktails for an hour and 40 minutes. The pub provides you with a robe and a wand to assist in the process.

Details: Potion cocktails include the Transfiguration Toniq, a spin on a lavender martini, and the Lost Thyme, a rum, thyme and lemon juice-based cocktail made in a cauldron.

The magical pub's take on a strawberry daiquiri but with a fiery twist. Photo: Taylor Allen/Axios

The big picture: The queer-founded company behind the bar is also planning to host more events for the LGBTQ+ community at the new spot.

  • "Queer people connect with fantasy because there's themes of not being understood by mainstream society but then finding acceptance in another place where you belong," Cortland told Axios.
The inside of the The Cauldron Magical Pub. Photo: Taylor Allen/Axios

Tip: If you want to go, act fast.

  • The bar only sells tickets in three-month intervals and has already sold 2,000 pre-sale tickets.

What they're saying: "We want to bring magic across the world and make dreams come true," Duckworth said.

One of the larger decorations at The Cauldron Magical Pub includes this magical typewriter. Photo: Taylor Allen/Axios

1 cool thing: All of the locations encourage patrons to bring in their favorite fantasy books so they can be donated to underserved schools.

  • The owners are working on finding a partnership to do the same in Philly.

Visit: 1305 Locust St.


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