Inside Kings, it can be hard to pinpoint the source of clattering sounds and uproarious cheers. The noise might stem from the bowling section, where glowing squares of abstract, retro wall art bookend the alleys. It might also come from ricocheting billiard balls, a well-aimed skee-ball, or a shuffleboard shot in the game room. Maybe someone spotted a celebrity—Bill Murray, Salma Hayek, and Lady Gaga are all on an extensive list of past famous visitors.
Wherever their origins, the telltale echoes of competition and camaraderie beckon to guests throughout the venue. They're accompanied in the air by the scents of comfort food, from staples such as sesame ginger wings to inventive fusions such as cheeseburger spring rolls. Sweeter aromas waft from multiple bars as the staff flavors martinis with gummy bears, pop rocks, and ice cream instead of the traditional fixings, olives or entire lemons on toothpicks.
As for sights, the surroundings blend vintage flair with luminous technology. More than 30 high-definition televisions line the space, broadcasting sports games and bowling scores. Though the game-room amenities differ slightly based on the town—Boston's Back Bay has six Brunswick Gold Crown pool tables, and Dedham boasts four miniature-roller-ball lanes—each Kings location hosts group events, including parties and corporate getaways where you can finally laugh at your boss's ridiculous shoes. Weekly themed nights for the public also encourage dancing, karaoke, and trivia.
What began 24 years ago as a sports bar with five TVs and a massive satellite dish has blossomed into a mecca for fans of Boston sports teams and lovers of hearty pub fare. Visitors to Coolidge Corner Clubhouse watch year-round hockey, baseball, pro and college football, and basketball on 25 LCD screens while feasting on 16-ounce burgers, savory pastas, and tender morsels of barbecue pork, chicken, and shrimp. Patrons also sip frosty craft beers on draft or potent cocktails and martinis as they share plates of chicken wings and nachos, or piled-high deli sandwiches and wraps.
A light-hearted celebration of Boston sportsdom permeates the restaurant, with its burgers and wraps named for famous athletes and the multiple screens showing area college and professional games. On the walls, framed photos commemorate Boston's proudest sports moments, such as a floor-to-ceiling print of Adam Vinatieri's famous 45-yard kick during the ?Snow Bowl? and an iconic photograph of Ted Williams defending his graduate thesis, ?On Hitting the Baseball Really, Really Hard to Make It Go Pretty Far.?
Yes, you can hear the cheers of Red Sox fan's during a home game at Jerry Remy's Sports Bar & Grill at Fenway. And the park's right field wall is easily viewed from a spacious rooftop deck. But the interior is what really reminds you that you're dining at the brainchild of the Sox's beloved announcer and former second baseman. Katharine Q. Seelye of The New York Times said in a 2010 article, "The most striking feature inside the restaurant is the view—on television. Two outsize high-definition televisions, measuring 11 feet long and costing $225,000 each, hang above the bar." The "screen monsters" make you wonder if you've stumbled onto the floor of the New York Stock Exchange or a spaceship control-deck manned by extraterrestrial sports fans. If you can't find a seat near the bar, there are 30 60-inch high-def televisions scattered throughout the pub.
Jerry Remy's generously portioned menu has caught as much attention as its collection of huge TVs. Robert Nadeau of the Boston Phoenix said, "Most of the scoring on this menu comes out of a Texas-style barbecue smoker," citing the authentic taste of the beef brisket and the juiciness of the smoked half-chicken. Bella English of the Boston Globe agreed that the large smoker located in the parking lot makes “succulent brisket, ribs, and chicken,” and reported that the huge desserts "must be seen to be believed."
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.