Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Best sports bars in Dallas to watch the Cowboys - Dallas Morning News

DALLAS â€" Beer on tap. Excitable sports fans. Speedy servers. Tons of TVs: These are the things that make sports bars great. We tipped a few back in search of Dallas’ best sports bars for Cowboys game watching, just in time for the start of the season.

Stan’s Blue Note on Greenville Avenue in Dallas

On a non-game day, the bar at Stan’s Blue Note plays host to a weird mix of strangers who sip beer out of mason jars and know their bartender by name. The shuffleboard table always seems to skew to the right, and the bathrooms aren’t always clean.

On game day, all that is still true, but the bar is stocked with tons of rowdy football fans, many in large groups.

The small upstairs section of Stan’s Blue Note can be reserved for a special party, and it's usually home to the bar’s loudest fans. When it’s not reserved, we've stumbled upon the occasional impromptu beer pong tournament. The service is friendly and the beer is cold. Don’t wear your fancy shoes. Best for: Big drinkers

Bryan Street Tavern in Dallas

This unassuming Dallas hole-in-the-wall isn’t first and foremost a sports bar, but it’s a great scene if you want a laid-back watering hole full of Cowboys fans. They’ve got an impressive list of Texas beers on tap and a slew of tables tucked into cozy nooks. In the room to the left of the front door when you walk in, several sectional couches face toward a giant television that seems perfect for settling in for a night of fizz and football.

There’s also a patio out back â€" dog-friendly, no less â€" with TVs. The menu is simple with pizza and wings, and both are good. Best for: East Dallas folks

The Owner's Box in Downtown Dallas

Downtown Dallas isn’t known to be a hotspot on the weekends or after dark; it’s busiest during the workweek and especially during lunch. But the Owner's Box, located in the bottom of the Omni Hotel, is a great place for out-of-towners. The wall of big screens show every game you can imagine, and unlike many Dallas bars, you can easily go to The Owners’ Box alone and not feel like you’re the outcast at a frat party. Best for: The lone sports fan

Christies in Uptown Dallas

A come-as-you-are kind of place, Christies doesn't even care that there's an apostrophe missing from its name. Pretty twentysomething young professionals drinking low-cal vodka/soda perch at the bar next to older, rowdy men who slog beer and throw their hands up in protest during bad calls. By the end of the game, this unlikely crew is hooting and hollering in unison â€" those rooting for ‘Boys, that is.

Football fans cram into the tables in the middle of the bar and less avid fans shoot pool in the corner, which is still good yelling distance from the many big TVs. Best for: Casual football fans

Buffalo Wild Wings on Lemmon Avenue in Dallas (with several area locations)

Some might think it’s blasphemy to pick a huge sports bar chain as one of the best sports bars in Dallas. Buffalo Wild Wings is not locally owned, and most are the same, regardless of city or state. But they serve some of the coldest beer in town. And your game will be on -- probably on at least three screens within eyeshot.

Perhaps that’s the best thing about Buffalo Wild Wings: It’s always the same. Menu items are greasy good, especially if you’re hung over. The beer selection is vast. And that punching bag game will still be there next time you get wild streak. Best for: Those who need a gametime bar in a pinch

Frankie’s in Uptown Dallas

Come early, stay late, and don’t expect to sit down at Frankie’s in Uptown Dallas. The beers won’t be cheap, but the clientele will be pretty. And it will be packed mostly full of chatty coeds looking to cheer on their team and perhaps meet a future date.

Frankie’s is regularly lauded as Dallas’ very best sports bar, perhaps in part because of the spunk of its bald-headed owner, Bill Katz. He bursts into the bar intermittently during games, swinging team flags and generally causing a fuss for spectating patrons. He often paints his hairless head with his favorite team’s colors, and there always seem to be specials on shots. Best for: Singles looking to mingle

Milo Butterfingers in Dallas

Located on SMU Boulevard close to the university, Milo Butterfingers is a rundown watering hole that sells cold pitchers of beer for cheap. It’s the closest thing to partying in a friend’s dingy game room without having to clean up after yourself. The foosball tables really make this bar feel like home. Best for: The college set

Draft Picks in Victory Park

Tucked behind the also-popular sports bar Hooters in the old Brewery Building is Draft Picks. The massive sports bar has TVs every way you look and lots of room to roam. Draft Picks is ideal for fickle sports watchers who might want to stand during one quarter, sit the next. There’s even a stage in the middle of the room, flanked by TVs.

Though it’s not a fussy spot, you’ll want to make a reservation if you have a large group. They'll squeeze you all in. Best for: Big groups

What's your favorite bar to watch the Cowboys? Let us know in the comments.

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