America's Best Sports Bars for 2011
January 26, 2015
Taking everything from beer and wings to game watchability into consideration, these are the best sports bars in the country
10. Barney's Beanery (Westwood, Calif.)
In its review of the best sports bars in Los Angeles, Trip Out Travel extols the virtues of this particular Barney’s location: “UCLA college students and buttoned-down businessmen abound in this classic offshoot of the flashier West Hollywood Barney’s. Cluttered Chili’s-like décor, outdoor seating, and hot waitresses make this a friendly neighborhood choice. The bar also has an air hockey table and video game area if you’re feeling the itch to show off your own athletic prowess.”
9. Cheli's Chili Bar (Detroit)
Owned by legendary former Red Wings defenseman Chris Chelios, Cheli's is located in the heart of Detroit, a short walk from Comerica Park and Ford Field. Head to Cheli's to catch the Red Wings game on one of their 36 HDTVs or go before the game and take their shuttle to Joe Louis Arena.
8. Major Goolsby's (Milwaukee)
Opened in 1970 and located less than a block from the Bradley Center, the home of Marquette basketball and the Milwaukee Bucks, Major Goolsby’s is a city institution. With 45 HDTVs, it is especially vibrant on NFL Sundays, but is a great place to catch your favorite team every night of the week. It was recently named the fourth best sports bar in America by Sports Illustrated.
7. Murphy's Bleachers (Chicago)
Isolated from other bars, on the corner of Waveland and Sheffield, and located directly behind centerfield of Wrigley Field, Murphy's is in a league of its own when it comes to Wrigleyville bars. It features a seemingly neverending array of Cubs and other Chicago teams memorabilia, screens in every direction, a rooftop deck, and food that is much better than it could get away with (try the Polish sausage with an Old Style). It is an absolute must-stop on anyone's Wrigley pilgrimage.
6. Standings Bar (New York)
In naming Standings best-in-show on his best sports bars in New York City list, Time Out’s Chris Schonberger writes, “If only all sports bars were more like Standings, where a refreshing lineup of American microbrews encourages beer drinkers to venture beyond Bud Light. Every inch of the tiny East Village space is lovingly plastered with memorabilia and newspaper clippings, eight HDTVs cover all the action, and audio from the games always takes precedence over music ('Standings hates music,' says owner Gary Gillis).” Seriously, this is an ideal spot for New York sports fans who take their beer seriously, as they offer a bi-weekly rotating tap of 10 microbrews that includes selections like Peak Oraganic Winter Session and Stevens Point Whole Whole Hog Barleywine.
5. Fadó (Seattle)
This Irish pub, which serves as headquarters for fans of the local MLS squad, the Seattle Sounders, opens as early as 4:30 a.m. to show important international matches from the World Cup, Euro Cup, and English Premiership League. It was recently named the best soccer bar in America by Prost Amerika, narrowly edging out the Globe Pub in Chicago.
4. Jillian's (Boston)
Located across the street from Fenway Park on Ipswich Street, Jillian’s is a three-floor, 70,000-square-foot behemoth that features 32 pool tables, a 22-lane bowling alley, and more than 50 television screens. Head here before or after a Red Sox game, or on any other day or night when you want to catch a game in a spacious, high-energy atmosphere. It is a great all-in-one bar where you can eat, drink, watch, and play, but if you find the bowling and pool to be distracting for game-viewing purposes, head to Cask ‘n Flagon, Bleacher Bar, or The Fours.
3. Chickie's & Pete's (Philadelphia)
With eight locations in Philadelphia’s metropolitan area, the much-decorated Chickie's and Pete’s (we're talking memorabilia and best sports bar awards) is famous for its crab fries and lobster Philly cheesesteak. Its 26,000-square-foot Packer Avenue location features 18 private suites, one 12-foot HD projector screen, two 10-foot HD projector screens, and more than 25 beers on tap.
2. Caesar's Palace Sports Book (Las Vegas)
The Caesar's Palace sports book is one of the ultimate sports bars because in addition to the food, drinks, and screens, you can wager on the games! Here, customers will not only cheer for wins and losses, but for a garbage-time bucket that extends a team's lead from six to eight or a late missed field goal that clinches the under. Caesar’s Palace has the best atmosphere of any sports book on the strip. Grantland’s Bill Barnwell, who is living in Vegas this football season, writes, “This is a massive space carved out for sports bedlam, and when there's a big game going on, you'll hear the shouting from the sports book throughout most of the casino. It might have the best energy of any sports book in Vegas.”
1. Will’s Northwoods Inn (Chicago)
An oasis in the heart of Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood, the Wisconsin-themed bar embodies all of the jolly spirit from Illinois's neighbor to the north: delicious beer, burgers, brats, and deep-fried cheese curds, as well as a sincerely neighborly spirit amongst the patrons and staff that is unsurpassed. Will's always has a great sports crowd, supporting the Cubs, Bulls, and Blackhawks, but especially comes alive for Packers and Badgers games, often hosting more than 700 fans in its three rooms and expansive outdoor patio. It is not uncommon to see fans of rival teams come to Will's because its vibrant atmosphere is not replicated anywhere else.