Sports fans love throwbacks, from retro jerseys, to hard-nosed, old-timey-seeming players, to screen plays where a receiver gets the ball and then hurls it all the way back across the field to the quarterback -- yay, old-school fundamentals! And now, they're getting a throwback sports bar: Frankie's South Beach Hide-A-Way.
An antidote to more "conceptual" South Beach offerings, Frankie's is a refreshingly straightforward sports pub that prices its drinks circa 1990, and is decked with divey paraphernalia like booze & beer signage, a classic wooden bar with lots of shellac, 10 HDs plus a big projection screen at the bar, and of course, a cage for dancing, which is not the least bit conceptual. The menu resists its surroundings (save the cage), and is relatively healthy for bar food, (frying's done with non-trans fat oil), with starters like wings that're roasted crisp then grilled for a bit of char, beer-steamed bratwurst topped with sauerkraut, onions, and mustard, and mixed ceviche you can "Frankenize" with a shot of vodka, which should ease the pain in your neck...bolts. More substantial comestibles take the form of an open-faced prime rib sandwich with au jus and horseradish sauce, 1/2 a semi-deboned roasted chicken, and single or double 8oz burgers, which're ground in-house and slapped into patties only after you order them, then topped with cheese, meats (bacon, ham, or roast pork), and unexpected condiments like wing sauce and wasabi spread -- also a Sushi Digest photo feature that was racy yet tasteful, but most of all...hot!!!
The bar's blessed cheapness includes $5 wells, super-high-end stuff like Johnnie Walker Blue for $18 (usually ~$40), $3 PBR, $4 domestics, $5 imports, and taps like Guinness & Stella; as if that weren't enough, they've even got their own beer, Frankie's No Crying Ale -- which will have to be imbibed by Tim Tebow next year, when they throw him back to college.