530 South St., Philadelphia, PA 19147
Hours: noon – 2 am daily.
If you’re looking for refuge from all the terrible shitholes on South St., Tattooed Mom’s might just be your divey oasis. You’ve got your pick of the dim, seafoam green downstairs, or the graffiti plastered upstairs with pool tables and bumper car seating. For this review, we focus on the top level, which is truer to dive-form than the downstairs. Up there you’ll find pool tables, a classic wall-mounted jukebox, and 3 rooms completely covered in graffiti and stickers from top to bottom.
The wall art at Tattooed Mom’s is the first thing you’ll notice at this place, and it certainly something to behold. Artists actually come in to change the place up on a regular basis, so you’ll see something different every time you go. Just be sure to see the Powerpuff Girls Human Centipede before it gets all covered up!
The front room upstairs has pool tables and the jukebox, the middle room holds the wall-hugging bar, and the back room has a collection of couches where the really drunk kids sit. The jukebox is one of the best still in existence. It may not hold 14,000 songs, but they know how to keep a classic album in place. There is a decent mix of newer and older music, including my favorite 11-minute long Modest Mouse song, and all the music somehow fits in with the atmosphere. The bathroom is in the back – try not to touch the handle because it is definitely going to be wet.
Pounders of PBR or Narragansett will run you $3 a pop. Most people just order beers and simple drinks, so service is usually fairly quick for a busy place. TMs has a small variety of taps that are about double the price of the adjunct lager pounders. If you are looking to enjoy craft beers in a relaxed environment, then get the hell off of South St.! Just drink the Narragansett. If you want to add a shot of well liquor (we are talking the absolute bottom of the well here), it’s an extra $4 – there’s no discount for the city-wide. Skip the shots unless someone else is buying.
The atmosphere at Tattooed Mom’s is about as divey as it gets – just don’t be thrown off by the grown-up versions of the scene kids milling about in their fingerless gloves. The key here is to claim a good corner, lean back, and crush pounders until you can crush no more.
Legend has is that Tattooed Mom sells food downstairs, but I wasn’t aware that they sold food at all until I saw the specials taped up in the bathroom.
The upstairs at Tattooed Mom’s is a dive by accident and on purpose at the same time. The jukebox is top-notch (3 plays for a dollar) and the shit on the walls changes every time you go there. The drinks are pricey and the well liquor tastes like sewer meth, but if you stick to Narragansett, you’ll have a good time.
Half-off draughts: every day, 5-7 pm and 10-11 pm
Meatless Mondays: half-off veggie menu items, noon – 10 pm
Taco Tuesdays: $1 off tacos, $2.50 Tecates, noon – 10 pm
Burger Wednesdays: $3.50 burgers, $2 Narragansett pounders, noon – 10 pm
Pierogi Thursdays: 50¢ pierogies, noon – 10 pm
Arts and Crafts Sunday: arts and crafts, $2 PBR pounders, half-price tater tots, 7 – close