I was so excited when I heard that Philadelphia’s world-renowned Ars Nova Workshop was opening a coffee shop, bar, and music venue for Jazz and Contemporary music on South Broad Street in the former (and beloved) Boot and Saddle. I have gone to many concerts they’ve hosted in interesting venues around the city, especially enjoying the more experimental and improvisational performers that one often has to go to NYC for, but having a permanent space has really upped the anti of opportunities to see amazing musicians like saxophonist Marshall Allen’s (of Sun Ra Arkestra) Ghost Horizons or to experience a celebration of the music of Herbie Hancock and Santana-Mclaughlin’s ‘Love, Devotion, Surrender.’
Besides the packed schedule of shows, they are also a daytime coffee shop that opens its bar at noon. They have a great (rotating) wine selection, local beers on tap, and an enticing list of Amaros from Italy, Croatia, and Brooklyn (who knew). Snack on tomato pie from the local bakery Cascia’s with a happy hour carafe of Col Di Luna ‘Flora’ Rosato Brut while listening to some cool jazz on the stereo from 4-6 pm on weekdays or 12-2 pm on weekends. Browse the records and books up front and maybe take something home to extend the experience.