Food & Drink

The Best New Sports Bars in America

Courtesy of BuzzWorks

We love a neighborhood sports bar that serves dollar beers and questionable wings. But sometimes you want to class up the big game with craft cocktails and food that won’t make you feel terrible the next day. While there are plenty of cocktail-friendly sports bars scattered across the country, a few newcomers are doing game day food and drink particularly right. Here, five of the best new sports bars.

Stadium Club, Arlington, TX

This 19,000-square-foot restaurant and bar is the newest addition to AT&T Stadium—home of the Dallas Cowboys—and is a nod to the old Stadium Club, which served fans in the team’s former Texas Stadium. You won’t miss a minute of the game when you’re lounging in this space thanks to the video walls around the venue’s multiple bars and 20 additional TVs in the dining area. There, you can sip on a barrel-aged Manhattan or signature Cowboy Mule while you dine on flatbreads, burgers and other upgraded sports bar fare. Stadium Club is open to the general public but has a member’s only policy on game days—you have to be a season or suite ticket holder to get in.

Park & Field, Chicago, IL

Park & Field’s mission is to redefine the neighborhood sports bar. Modern flatscreens line the walls of the vintage-esque space, which is designed to look like a turn of the century gymnasium. The menu is filled with elevated sports bar classics—like a braised short rib pot pie and crispy polenta fries—and there’s signature cocktails, craft beers and a well-rounded wine list to wash it all down. In the summer, you can enjoy a drink on the 6,000-square-foot patio during a game of bocce, and in the cooler months you can snuggle up to fire pits with DIY s’more kits and hot cocktails like the Mint Condition—Basil Hayden, espresso, mint simple syrup, bitters and sea salt.

BuzzWorks, San Franciso, CA

San Francisco’s once-industrial SoMa neighborhood is a perfect place for the city’s newest craft beer haven as AT&T Park, home to the Giants, is right around the corner. BuzzWorks is a beer-lover’s paradise. The bar features 40 rotating craft beers on tap and more than 100 bottled and canned brews. There’s something on the food menu for every level of appetite, from snacks like olives and smoked almonds to meaty, cheesy hot pressed sandwiches. Die hards can watch the game on one of the bar’s HD TVs, while those who couldn’t care less have pinball, pool and foosball to keep them busy.

Rivalry, Milwaukee, WI

If you live in Milwaukee, you probably have some friends that root for Wisconsin and others who take the Illinois side. At Rivalry, fans of both states’ teams can come together and watch the big game in the same venue—Wisconsin games always play in the street level space and Illinois followers can get their fix on the river level. If that divide isn’t enough, you can also drink your allegiance. The bar serves two signature Old Fashioneds: one for Chicago (Old Forrester, demerara, Amaro Di Angostura, orange bitters, vanilla bean) and one for Wisconsin (Copper & King’s Brandy, demerara, Angostura, orange and cherry press). Even if you’re not a sports fan, you have to stop in for killer views of the Milwaukee River and classic Midwestern snacks like Vienna beef hot dogs and cheese curds.

Smoke Justis, Covington, KY

This new sports bar sits right across the Ohio River from Cincinnati in Covington, Kentucky, and owner Richard Dickmann wants you to know a thing or two about the small city’s baseball history. In 1913, Covington had its very own Federal League baseball team—The Blue Sox—for a mere two months before they were shipped off to Kansas City and renamed the Packers. Even though the Federal League is now defunct and the team is long gone, their legacy lives on in this upscale sports joint, which is named after former Blue Sox player, Walter “Smoke” Justis. Stop in to sample from the long list of craft beers and solid whiskey selection while chowing down on delicious barbecue.