A 40-foot mahogany bar dominates the space at The Spirit Bar, allowing bartenders to slide any of the 50 available brews to patrons while they watch up to eight different games on 12 televisions, including seven 42-inch plasma screens. The bar's year-round premium sports packages keep the apple-red walls echoing with the sounds of professional baseball, hockey, or college football, and it hosts viewings of every college-basketball tournament game and pay-per-view ultimate-fighting event. Dartboards and weekly pub-trivia nights help keep patrons occupied in between athletic broadcasts.
Even the menu strives for an inclusive neighborhood feel, featuring an eclectic combination of international and regional comfort foods. The cooks slather wings with one of 17 different sauces—such as chipotle-bourbon barbecue, caribbean jerk, or garlic and parmesan—and they hand-form each Angus-beef burger patty. Fried fish 'n' chips evoke the menu of a transatlantic pub, and nachos with homemade salsa and guacamole recall flavors from south of the international date line.
Olde Magoun's replaces the handlebar mustache fights and blindfolded moonshine tastings of old-timey saloons with a menu of fresh pub fare. Thai beef skewers ($9.95) and Cuban egg rolls ($8.95) warm up the palate in time for exquisite entrees like the chicken curry ($11.95) and the grilled Reuben XXL ($9.95)—which arrives overstuffed with layers of shaved corned beef, Russian dressing, Swiss, and either ale-braised sauerkraut or homemade coleslaw. Carnivores who insist that their meat be shredded by a skilled hair-metal chef will savor the North Carolina pulled pork sandwich ($9.95), while the veggie-friendly V-8 pizza ($9.95) tops itself with every herbivorous morsel in the house. Olde Magoun's serves its food until late so that it can be paired more easily with a vast array of draught beer that includes Clown Shoes Brown Angel Ale, Murphy's Irish Stout, and Paper City Blueberry Ale.
Nothing says Boston Irish more than McGreevy’s, a fun pub on Boylston Street owned and operated by the city’s own Dropkick Murphys front man Ken Casey. Step through the wooden door and into the popular, if a bit touristy, bar, that was named after Michael McGreevy, who once headed up the Royal Rooters, a fan club of the Boston Red Sox. Like the Rooters back in the 1800s, the Dropkicks still sing “Tessie” to cheer the Sox onto World Series wins. And while the pub honors its history with a replica of McGreevy’s original “3rd Base Saloon” bar at the back and sports memorabilia throughout, the menu features updated pub classics like waffle fries, chicken wings, burgers and hot dogs – all of which appeal to the college-aged crowd that tends to drop in.
More than 100 plasma televisions light up inside Sports Grille Boston, treating every diner to a front-row seat for the evening’s sporting events, many of which take place at the TD Garden across the street. The screens share wall space with sports memorabilia, including jerseys, hockey sticks, a Michael Jordan statue, and Ted Williams’s favorite paint color. The restaurant's extensive menu of bar food echoes its milieu with thematically named dishes such as Spud Webb potato skins, Larry Bird chicken, and Fenway sirloin tips, which the kitchen staff douses in a secret house marinade. To accompany each bite, bartenders keep up to 25 beers on tap alongside numerous brews in bottles, buckets, and pitchers.
The Four’s seems to have everything going for it. It once received top sports-bar honors from Sports Illustrated, and its proximity to TD Garden makes it a great place to snag last-minute tickets. If you strike out on tickets, don’t sweat it—there’s always a great view from the bar’s 42 high-definition TVs.