The Best Cheap Dive Bar in NYC
We know what you're thinking. An après-ski “lodge” set up inside an indoor atrium seems more like the place to watch the Winter Olympics. All in good time, grasshopper. But on Sunday it’s all about the three projection screens, the large-format cocktails, and the flannel blankets. For the game, you can get a giant copper mug of Moscow Mule for $55 each; a tailgate platter with empanadas, guacamole, perrito caliente (hot dogs), and wings for $99; and 20 sliders and fries for $99.
A little 10-pin before the big game? Come on, you know it’s what Gronk would do. Believe it or not, the newest outpost of the bowling mini-chain has its own “football headquarters,” with 12-foot LED screens on top of the expected HDTVs. Bowling is free all day.
Both the regular ol' 80-inch screens and the one-night-only big projection screen beckon; just don’t forget to order food before ordering your fourth 90 Minute IPA. (The whole game is 60 minutes, man!) City Tap's signature Tailgate Platter ($52) includes Philly cheesesteak spring rolls, 10-spiced wings, potato skins, and supreme pizza -- all of which are best paired with a bucket of five Narragansett brews ($12).
A big game demands a big spread: wings, ribs, brisket, and pulled pork, with a dessert buffet later rolled out during Timberlake’s sweet halftime performance. This on top of four big screen TVs, surround sound, a Super Bowl pool with prizes every quarter, and guaranteed seating with ticket purchase. At Smoke Shop, $29 guarantees you reserved seats in the main dining room; $49 gets you reserved seats at the bar and exclusive access to a second fried chicken buffet. For $79 per person, up to 14 folks can sit in the semi-private “owner’s box,” complete with private TVs and a special spread carved by chef Andy Husbands himself.
Man, are those water views great. And you’ll have no idea, because you’ll be staring at the 70-inch screens and sucking down the surround sound along with some local craft beers. Bar seats are first come, first served, but you can reserve dining room tables to ensure you see kickoff. Special game-day snacks include Kobe meatball subs, togarashi popcorn, and Malaysian-style chicken wings.
For those who want to be out and about but don’t want to get too crazy -- or spend too much. The bar will bring down two projection screens for the game and pour its usual impressive selection of craft beers. You know them for their 75-cent wings during the regular season, but on Super Bowl Sunday they’ll also offer chips and chili for $8 and chicken taquitos for $5.
It’s the quieter little sibling to the Kendall Square institution, which makes it a hidden gem of a game-day haven. We suggest snagging a primo seat as soon as your Sunday schedule allows. It’s both a February-long deal and also maybe the best Super Bowl deal going: Order a bottle of wine or a large-format cocktail, and you get a free “mystery pizza” of the kitchen’s choosing.
If you seriously don’t want to mess around with seating worries, reserve one of the Supper Club’s couches, complete with a stocked mini fridge, and focus all of your attentions on the game. (You can also reserve the hightop and normal lounge seating; email emailJen@CapoSouthBoston.com for all reservations.) To calm your nerves, there will also be a pre-game DJ. The special game day fare includes wood-fire roasted wings with lemon and rosemary ($10) and meatball sliders with burrata ($14).
Cask 'n' Flagon is on this list because it's an institution that will forever do right by our city’s die-hard denizens. And because win or lose, the people-watching will be epic and you’ll likely have a story to tell after the game. Here you'll get a $20 trip to heaven: deep fried potato slices smothered in cheese and bacon, accompanied by a bucket of of four Coors Lights.
If you seek a non-knucklehead scene, grab a seat near one of the 10 flat screens, nod your hellos to the other fans, order a negroni, and settle in for an evening of adult sports viewing. The 40-something capacity means you won’t lose your hearing from the yelps of victory/defeat. No special deal here. You’re either in or you’re out.