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Whatever happened to the West Philly Loco Pez?

February 13, 2018

In 2016, we reported on the possibility that Loco Pez, the cash-only Fishtown taqueria, was opening a new location at 47th and Baltimore, in the spot that the Carrot Cake Man used to occupy in the old Montrose building. What ever happened to that plan? According to a local realtor’s website, Loco Pez signed a lease for the space in early 2016, but since then progress has been erratic.

For many months there was little to no activity, then eventually various construction permits for a sit-down restaurant appeared in the window, but construction seemed to stall as of late last Autumn. The location’s liquor license is in “safekeeping” status, which means that it’s still attached to that location, but not currently active. Only in the last few weeks have local residents reported renewed activity inside the space. 

We couldn’t reach the owners of Loco Pez in time for this article, but the lease information and the fact that the liquor license is registered to a corporation with the same home address as one of the owners of Loco Pez would seem to confirm that the Montrose building it is in fact the long-awaited West Philly outpost of the divey taco bar. The recent uptick of activity in the space and chatter among hospitality industry professionals suggest that work on the location has restarted and is progressing, but the status of the liquor license and a lack of hiring activity seem to indicate that the opening isn’t going to happen anytime soon.

We will keep you updated as we learn more.

Mike VanHelder

17 Comments For This Post

  1. john Says:

    Any news on the Reanimator coffee shop on Pine between 47th & 48th?

  2. Sb Says:

    Reanimator looks like it has counters and furniture now which is more than it had a week ago.

  3. no need Says:

    we dont need this restaurant, so I hope it is not finished. I do not want west philly to become another fishtown. keep adding trendy little taco restaurants and watch what will happen.

  4. Strongforu Says:

    Personally, I am looking forward to the taco restaurant. Hopefully, it will be a place that all in the neighborhood feel welcome. Unlike some of the other local establishments.

  5. lynn Says:

    to be clear, The Carrot Cake Man was at 47th & Cedar, not 47th & Baltimore

  6. Cork Says:

    As long as the tacos are good, I’d love for this to finally open!

  7. Hermes Says:

    +1 for tacos…

  8. gordon Says:

    @strongforu, question: which establishment do you not feel welcome?

  9. Strongforu Says:

    @gordon the majority of restaurants along the Baltimore Avenue corridor with a few exceptions. And I’ve lived in the neighborhood for nearly 6 years.

  10. Rebecca Says:

    @strongforu … Curious about what it is about local restaurants that makes you feel unwelcome. Genuinely curious.

  11. Not Today Satan Says:

    Busy with other things……
    https://www.phillymag.com/news/2017/03/02/loco-pez-gay-lawsuit-sebastian-cummings/

  12. goldenmonkey Says:

    An article from over a year ago?

    How timely.

  13. Corey Says:

    Not timely. But appropriate, as the thread concerns whether or not the new restaurant will provide an environment where all in the neighborhood will feel welcome.

  14. Goldenmonkey Says:

    I can understand your point of view, but may I ask, have you ever felt unwelcome in any establishment along Baltimore Ave? I certainly haven’t.

  15. Corey Says:

    No, and that’s kind of the point. It’s ironic that the place one poster hopes will make baltimore avenue more open and welcoming is being sued for discrimination.

  16. real 46ther Says:

    A year isn’t that long ago for a lawsuit.
    Also, have they done anything to change their tune? Notably, did they change the menu sign that has proudly displayed a homophobic slur on it for years now? That isn’t the attitude for West Philly and I wouldn’t feel good eating there.

  17. Avdol Muhammed Says:

    I just read the article on why this place has a lawsuit.

    Why would any one you support it with your business?

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