Summer Games

Where to Watch the Tokyo Olympics in Houston

One nation. One team. Many, many bars.

A year in the making after the pandemic-fueled postponement, the 2020 (AKA 2021) Summer Olympics are officially going down this summer, kicking off with the Opening Ceremonies at Tokyo's Olympic Stadium on Friday, July 23 and closing things out on Sunday, August 8. We’re pretty sure the world’s greatest athletes are more than primed and ready to go for the gold, and Houston’s finest local watering holes, kitchens, and sports bars are, too. Here are the top spots to cheer on our hometown heroes this summer, including Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles, fearless southpaw Ginny Fuchs, and pro road racing cyclist Lawson Craddock.

Christian’s Tailgate

Multiple locations
As one of Houston’s most beloved beer- and burger-centric outposts, Christian’s Tailgate will be cheering on Team USA as it broadcasts the Games of the XXXII Olympiad. Don best your red, white, and blue (or the colors of whatever nation you’re rooting for, no judgement here) and join the mayhem at one of its five Houston locations. Each guarantees an excellent TV setup, live DJs on weekends, grub from mango habanero wings and chicken fried steak to fish tacos and colossal burgers, and specials including $15 domestic beer buckets, $2 Taco Tuesdays, 50¢ oyster Fridays, and happy hour from 4 pm to 7 pm.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Pitch 25 Beer Park

EaDo
We can’t think of a better place to catch the Olympics than this Texas-sized soccer bar and beer garden. Not only can you watch your favorite athletes compete in events like beach volleyball, football, and swimming, but you can even engage in a little friendly competition yourself, as the 25,000-square-foot indoor-outdoor venue sports a soccer pitch, axe-throwing grounds, and pub games like foosball, pool, and more. There are also countless strategically positioned TVs to broadcast the big show, plus nearly 100 taps and a strong roster of comfort bites to keep you properly sated.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Hay Merchant
Hay Merchant | Photo by Julie Soefer Photography

Hay Merchant

Montrose
The craft suds service at this lower Westheimer hangout is second to none, with all of your hoppiest IPAs and frutiest Saisons served at proper temps in the appropriate selection of snifters, tulips, and royal pint glasses. You’ll want to drink some of those—along with off-the-charts eats from crispy pig ears to crowd-pleasing Korean goat and dumplings—while you watch the games on various TVs scattered throughout the space. Drop in on Wednesday nights when Hay Merch hosts Olympic-themed Trivia Nights beginning at 7:15 pm.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Beer Market

Midtown
365 beers top the regularly rotated menu at this indoor-outdoor beer emporium and kitchen, and while that surely makes it an all star pick, the wall-to-wall flat screens solidify its status as one of Houston’s most essential sports bars (that, and the irresistible hot, buttery pretzel sticks with cheese dip, of course). Catch your favorite international athletes mount the podium as you make your way through the suds selection.  
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

McIntyre’s

Shady Acres & Downtown
Now with two locations (its three-level downtown hub just opened earlier this month), McIntyre’s has officially qualified as one of the greatest sports bars in town thanks to over 120 TVs between the two locations and winning happy hour and daily specials. Over in Shady Acres, the indoor-outdoor space draws a steady crowd of sports fans year round, and we expect things to get even rowdier during the Olympic games. Cool off with a Ranch Water, score al pastor tacos and fajita fries from the El Guajillo Grill food truck, show up early to snag one of the swing seats or a shaded table near the billowing fans, and head inside when you need an A/C break. The downtown location offers even more indoor space (plus a dog-friendly patio), so plan accordingly if you prefer a sweat-free or dog-full viewing experience.  
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Monkey’s Tail
Monkey’s Tail | Photo by Kirsten Gilliam

Monkey’s Tail

Northside Village
What’s more Houston than watching the Olympics at an Mexican-American cocktail dive? With flatscreens inside as well as out on the patio, you’ll be taking in the action while partaking in your own action, including but not limited to tequila and Mexican coke highballs, boozy popsicles, and eats from smashed Chango burgers to smoked barbacoa pizza. Look out for daily specials like Monday Steak Night and Flauta Wednesdays, too.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

The Sporting Club
The Sporting Club | Photo by Corine Michel

The Sporting Club

Washington
Ahi tuna crudo, happy hour Gulf oysters, Maine lobster rolls, and guanciale and quail egg carbonara pizza are just some of the delicious items awaiting your arrival to this uber posh, high-energy sporting club and bar. And don’t forget the actual Olympics, of course, plus a roster of hand crafted cocktails curated by Houston’s Ladies of Libation, Laurie Harvey and Kris Sowell. Inside the 5,000 square-foot open floor plan sits crystal chandeliers, antique mirrors, and, most importantly for the purposes of this list, an LED TV matrix made of six 42-inch screens around the 360-degree marble bar. There’s also a sprawling patio so you can pop some bubbly after Team USA inevitably snatches gold.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Revelry on Richmond
Photo courtesy of Revelry on Richmond

Revelry on Richmond 

Montrose
This stylish craft beer bar and patio will be playing the Summer Olympics on more than 30 TVs alongside daily specials plus an extended happy hour on Fridays from 3 pm to 9 pm. Make your way through the 40-strong list of brews and look out for deals from Burger and Pint nights to “Big Ass Beers and Fajita Wednesdays.” The pub grub is worthy of its own medal, with next level plates like short rib and queso loaded fries, yellowfin tuna poke tacos, and the house Revelry Burger, smothered with bleu cheese, peppered bacon, and onion strings, and served on a plump and chewy pretzel bun.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Pour Behavior

Midtown
You’ve got a full 20,000 square feet in which to chant “USA” aboard this massive sports club and entertainment venue, not to mention a duo of 220-inch HD video walls and myriad other screens all tuned into the Olympic games. Expect a fun-loving crowd and tasty frozen cocktails like the Strawberry Clutch, hit with lime, Montenegro liqueur, and strawberry-infused rum. Noshes include Texas chili fries, carnitas tacos, and for all you ballers out there, surf n’ turf.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Pluckers Wing Bar
Pluckers Wing Bar | Photo by Melissa Skorpil

Pluckers Wing Bar

Multiple locations
Pluckers is known to draw both sports and wing fanatics, and things will be no different when the Olympics take center stage throughout this massive bar. Every table comes with a view here, thanks to a wall-to-wall screen setup. Show up for the games and stay for those incredible wings, sauced up or dry-rubbed in 20-plus flavors from the oh-so-sweet Dr Pepper to the tongue-scorching Fire in the Hole. Round things out with fried pickles, stuffed jalapeños, and “totchos” (AKA nachos made with tots instead of chips because Pluckers is just fun like that).
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating or join the waitlist via Yelp.

Palace Social  

Bellaire
You can compete in your very own stateside Olympic trials while watching the big games go down at this reimagined version of the old Palace Lanes. Now a 27,000-square-foot entertainment arena, there are dozens of flatscreens litterested throughout the space alongside heart-pumping attractions like bowling lanes, multi-sport simulators, eSports Lounges, and a giant arcade—not to mention an excellent lineup of beers, wines, craft cocktails, and pub food to keep you going to gold.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Check back during the games for all of Thrillist’s continuing Olympics coverage. Think of us like an all-knowing friend watching along with you to answer all the most important questions, like how heavy Olympic medals are, or why this year’s games are still called the 2020 Olympics. We'll explain everything from what ROC means to why athletes are sleeping on cardboard beds, and much, much more.

Brooke Viggiano is a contributor for Thrillist.

 

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