If America's new billion-dollar stadiums and arenas can be described as temples, many of Her sports bars remain the trenches out back that worshipers pee into. For a bar worthy of your tithes, hit Draft Media Sports Lounge, now open
Part of the Sheraton's $90 million renovation, Draft's a massive (414 capacity) wood-paneled den of vicarious athletic thrills, outfitted with a wall-length leather-trimmed bar, thick high-back booths, sofa'd lounging areas, 21 flat screens, and an anchoring 104-inch plasma; adulation stretches from the standard (photos of Dirk, jerseys from Troy, shoes from...Keyshawn), to the ornate (expressive sports-hero paintings; reliefs of team logos elegantly carved into wood panels -- as opposed to an inexpertly scrawled "suck on it, 'Skins"). The one-page menu elevates gut-enhancing standbys: soft pretzels w/ cheese sauce & raspberry-chipotle mustard, the Flat Bread Meat Loaf Sandwich w/ jack, fennel slaw & cayenne ketchup, the "Loaded" flatbread pizza (fresh mozz/sweet Ital sausage/pepperoni/onions/green peppers/black olives/sauteed 'shrooms), and four ice-cream sundaes (hot apple pie/choc fudge brownie/banana split/cheesecake & strawberries) served as "glasses" or "shots" (for if you're man enough?). To make you even happier/sadder over the game's outcome, the bar slings a dozen drafts (Boulevard, Smithwick's, Black and Tan...), 14 mostly Cali wines, 60+ spirits (including some finer bottles -- who doesn't love Cowboys & Cognac?), and six signature cocktails, including the Absolut/wasabi/lemon juice/sugar "Half Time Martini" and the Patron/Cointreau/Grand Marnier "Ray's Ultimate Margarita", which you should go Crazy for
Beyond watching sweaty men chase balls, Draft also offers opportunities for you to actually do stuff, with free wi-fi, red felt back-corner pool tables, Wii stations, and two private, state-of-the-art karaoke rooms -- so even if the 'Boys end up Wade-ing through another disappointing season, you Don't have to Stop Believing.