Check out the Best Sports Bars in San Diego

San Diego's Best Sports Bars

San Diego's Best Sports Bars

It’s time to find the perfect spot to watch the game while chowing down on some wings and a cold, refreshing beer. The best choice is a sports bar (besides watching it from the actual stadium). When it comes down to it, a good sports bar is based on a variety of criteria. It needs to have a plethora of TVs, a great location, unique decor, good beer and, of utmost importance, spectacular food. If it satisfies all those requirements, it’s a keeper and will be sure to have you coming back. Here is a list of five definite “keepers” that’ll make you want to be a regular even during the off season.     

Barleymash puts a fun twist on the traditional, American sports bar with it’s eccentric personality. Located in the heart of the Gaslamp District, this restaurant’s philosophy and menu offerings both draw heavily from two pub staples: bourbon and beer. Even it’s name referencing the typical grain mixture used in brewing and distilling both those alcoholic beverages. The aesthetics of Barleymash are rustic-meets-modern, with reclaimed wood finishes and garage-door style windows. Besides the plentiful TVs provided to watch the game, entertainment is presented seven nights a week and ranges from bands to DJs to beer tastings and food pairings. As far as the food goes, you have to try the Mash, which consists of noodles, a variety of beer-cheese sauces, more cheese, bread crumbs, ale-braised pulled-pork, bourbon bbq sauce and fresh jalapeños, all topped with crispy onions.  

If you love seafood and sports, you’ve got to check out Wonderland Ocean Pub. Located on Santa Monica Ave. in Ocean Beach, this waterfront sports bar has got everything you could imagine, from ample flatscreen TVs to delicious eats. With outstanding reviews and a four star rating, you won’t be disappointed. Their coastal cuisine includes Mac Daddy Ahi Poke, an Ahi Burrito, Lobster Tacos, a Shrimp Burger and much more. Don’t like seafood? Not a problem. They have other meat, vegetarian and gluten-free options available. This seaside eatery pays homage to Wonderland Park, San Diego’s first amusement park that opened it’s doors in 1913 but was unable to compete with other booming attractions like Balboa Park. Sit at the bar during the sunset and enjoy complimentary “Sunset Shots,” or enjoy the live entertainment provided by acoustic artists Monday through Friday at 5 pm. You can’t miss their games, ranging from giant Jenga to shuffleboard, or the usual pool and foosball tables.

For a dog-friendly venue, The Rabbit Hole is the place to be. Right on Adams Ave. in Normal Heights, this sports bar truly exemplifies the town’s sense of community. As soon as you walk in, you’ll be sure to notice the mural on the wall. It pays respect to the Normal Heights Syndicate, D. C. Collier, who originally developed the town in 1906 when the neighborhood was nothing more than an empty field with rabbits. If you’re a fan of the movie The Big Lebowski, you’ll be glad to see “The Dude” on their menu: vanilla vodka, Licor 43, coffee and their house cream. It’ll be sure to wake you up in the morning. Monday through Friday 5–7 pm is “Hoppy Hour” and consists of select local drafts, wine by the glass or select specialty cocktails for just $5. Or stop by Wednesday night from 7:30–9:30 pm for trivia night and enjoy a Jack Rabbit or Basil Bunny. If you’re in a group of two or more, “adult” punch bowls are available for the group to share, called Unicorn Lake or the Monkey Punch. To munch on, we suggest the Chubby Bunny.  

For those who are really a kid at heart, the High Dive Bar and Grill is ideal for you. Right on Morena Blvd. in Bay Park, this quirky bar and restaurant features a vintage theme with a classic jukebox and pinball machines. They also carry 20 local craft beers rotating on tap and have an array of tiki-inspired cocktails. Every month they host a ladies night beer dinner called “Chicks For Beer” and donate the proceeds to a non-profit organization that focuses on special projects for children with cancer and their families. Be sure to try the fruity Island Mai Tai or share an order of some cheesy Gorgonzola Fries. Stop by for Sunday “Fun-Day” and enjoy $2 fish tacos from 5-10 pm, or celebrate “Marg’ Monday” with $5 margaritas available all day. 

Last but certainly not least is the Stout Public House. This Irish pub is the go-to sports bar for any and all hockey fans. Not a hockey fan? Don’t worry, their TVs showcase a variety of games at all times. Right in the heart of downtown, located on 6th Ave., this upbeat pub stays open late every day of the week. Their food is all-natural, organic and (when possible) locally-grown, so you can count on exceptional freshness and great taste in every bite. On top of being a great sports bar to sit and watch a game, they host special occasions if you book in advance, so it's a great venue option for your next private or holiday party.

Whether you’re looking for a great place to sit and watch the game or just a place to grab a bite to eat, these options will leave you fully satisfied. The abundant, unique characteristics in each place ensure you won’t fall victim to the ordinary, mundane vibes commonly seen in larger corporate chains. Rather than watching the game from home, we invite you to check out these local sports bars to dine and unwind.

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