Don?t let the shepherd's pie, fish 'n' chips, and draft beers fool you. Though Tilted Kilt Pub & Eatery snatches up the best cultural fragments of Scotland, England, and the Emerald Isle, the eatery started in Las Vegas. Restaurateur Mark DiMartino sought to combine the communal, rousing feel of pubs in the British Isles with the campy fun of American sports bars, pairing hearty food and traditional trappings with televisions and waitresses clad in mini kilts and alluring plaid halter-tops modeled after William Wallace?s eveningwear.
Since its founding, Tilted Kilt locations have popped up in 25 states and two Canadian provinces, serving all manner of hybrid dishes such as the Scottish cheese steak, the Sloppy Jane made with sliced turkey or shaved rib eye, and the Tilted Guilt, an ice-cream sundae perched atop a cookie.
The kitchen wizards at Slammers Pub and Grill plate hearty pub fare with homemade sauces in a family-friendly establishment marked by tableside TVs and sports memorabilia. More than 20 sandwiches and a lengthy list of half-pound Black Angus steak burgers prevent rumbling tummies from bellowing at referees on the eatery's 22 screens, and custom pizzas encourage culinary exploration. The friendly staff stands ready to cheer on patrons brave enough to tackle the 3-pound Slammer burger, rewarding victorious diners with a half-pound burger every week for a year, or a one-time prize of 26 pounds of ground beef. A robust events calendar keeps the bar bustling with karaoke, live music, and buffets during Bears games.
At Orange 13, swaths of burnt-orange organza and crystal chandeliers transform tables into secluded enclaves. At two granite-topped bars, bartenders pour 50 handpicked wines and mix martinis with top-shelf liquors. The chefs strive to match the sleek, sultry environs with a menu of creative fusion fare: they adorn a trio of buffalo, elk, and Kobe burgers with brie and bleu cheese and add zest to tender lamb chops with lemon-thyme glaze. To encourage an experience as fun as the cuisine is exquisite, live entertainment and DJs spin beats until 3 a.m., and high ceilings make it plausible that dancing giraffes appear, too. Live bands hit the stage at 8 p.m. on Fridays and DJs begin to spin sets at 11 p.m. on Saturdays.
For centuries, there weren’t many lively, TV-enhanced pubs with gourmet food coming out of the kitchen. Luckily for those in Naperville, Tap In Pub & Carvery balances good times with a few good eats. As patrons cheer on the home team or diss a rival town’s Jeopardy contestant, chefs carve sandwiches to order, such as Thanksgiving sliders with sage stuffing and cranberry jam, or a torta cubano with hand-carved pork, ham, Swiss, and sliced pickles. Succulent meats pair nicely with throwback beers and local craft brew drafts from Solemn Oath, Two Brothers, and Revolution. Guests wanting something a bit sweeter can get a seasonal Arnold Palmer or a signature cocktail such as the Ben Hogan with Buffalo Trace bourbon, cherry Madagascar vanilla molasses, ginger beer, and fresh sprigs of mint. For sports fans, the venue plans to add golf simulators in the near future.
Totals Sports Bar's electrified atmosphere unites fans of teams, tunes, and eats seven days a week. Alongside a mammoth projection screen, 24 large televisions join forces to upend boredom and beam big games straight into thirsty eyes. As guests browse the variegated menu of succulent burgers and satisfying entrees, chefs step out from behind an onsite smoker to test the structural integrity of dinnerware with heaps of barbecue pulled meats and char-grilled baby back ribs. An extensive beer menu offers to offset savory bites with sudsy sips from brewers such as Two Brothers. On weekend nights, the bar transforms into a high-energy music venue, complete with a state-of-the-art sound and lighting system and auto-tuned bouncers.
A sizeable beer list keeps the party going at Stone City Saloon, a sports bar and grill with regular karaoke nights and an outdoor patio for bags-tossing. The kitchen cooks up classic pub food, including a signature spinach artichoke dip, wings, burgers, and sandwiches, while bartenders pour tap brews from makers such as Dogfish Head, Bell's, Revolution, and Three Floyds. Eight- and nine-ball pool leagues gather around the felt several times a week.