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Pandora’s Liquor Licensing Box — Serving Alcohol in Pennsylvania is Prohibitively Expensive, So What Are We Gonna Do About It?

Enswell glows like a fistful of jewels, passed down for generations, like it’s always been here, gracing a corner of Spruce Street in Philadelphia’s Center City. Inside, the coffee/cocktail/bottle-shop/fine-dining establishment greets visitors with Parisian globe lamps, a back bar with slender wooden borders and mirrored panels showcasing its many liquor bottles, and a chipped mosaic floor—one of the only elements of Enswell that was part of the original 1917 building design. 

It’s all like stepping into a dreamy Art Deco space with hand-painted murals and neoclassical arches, akin to an Alphonse Mucha illustration. I sit down on a tufted leather banquette and glance over the menu, in the mood for a martini. There is one—with the option of Snug Harbor gin or Powderhorn vodka—shaken up with Fell to Earth vermouth, all spirits of Pennsylvanian provenance.