You'd probably expect to find a few pool tables at a place called Corner Pocket Billiards & Grill. What you might not expect is that the seven high-grade billiards courts beckon to patrons at no cost on Friday and Sunday nights. Thanks to foosball, darts, and 15 flatscreen TVs, as well as two massive projectors, Corner Pocket is an entertainment power house. The pool room fuels nights out with a menu of hearty pub classics, weekly drink specials, and an ever-present selection of 16 frosty draft beers. Bi-weekly karaoke nights drown out the clatter of sunken shots and give patrons an acceptable venue to try out their one-man barbershop quartet.
Bar 101 satisfies hungry patrons with a revamped menu of affordable American fare and invites leisurely sipping with lively weekly entertainment. Frenemies can make peace over a basket of frings, a hybrid of spiced onion rings and crispy french fries ($5), before moving onto heartier fare, such as a buffalo-chicken toasted Torpedo sandwich ($7) or 8-ounce 101 burger with cheddar cheese, hickory-smoked bacon, onion rings, and special sauce ($8). Herbivores can snack on an array of salads ($4–$8) or caprese pizza, loaded with melted mozzarella, roma tomatoes, and fresh basil ($7).
Since 1959, rollers have been zipping spherical missiles down Town Hall Lanes' 32 well-kept bowling corridors. Though similar in concept to the more familiar form of 10-pin punishment, duckpin bowling differs in that its frames permit competitors three rolls rather than two. The balls used in the game are also smaller and lack holes for fingers, making them less unwieldy for youngsters or phalange-less manatees. Even well-versed bowlers will have to bisect lanes with preternatural precision and power to scatter the 10 duckpins, as their lightweight structure makes bowling a strike much more difficult. The short, squat shape of the pins adds to the challenge and recalls the days when bowlers improvised their own games using nothing but factory-rejected cola bottles.
Rhode Island Billiard Bar & Bistro has kept the polished pool balls clicking seven days a week for more than 100 years, recently returning the tin ceilings and mahogany bars of its billiards room to their full luster. Hone your skills at felt croquet on any of 15 9-foot tables and one 7-foot table ($3.50/hour for members, $5.50 for nonmembers). In between rounds of foosball, pinball, or watching the bocce bomb tournament on 15 TVs, mad gourmands can commingle menu items such as the calamari fritti ($7.99) and chicken fingers ($6.99) into clawed, ink-spraying gullet monsters.
Seasonal sports flicker on flat-screen TVs at Part II Lounge, where a menu of lip-smacking pub grub coasts down esophagi on foam-capped surfs of domestic suds. Starters such as pulled-pork nachos enable table-wide bonding and barbecue-sauce-smothered thumb wars, with winners scoring a homemade roasted garlic hummus platter with toasted pita chips. Toe-tapping tunes pour from an on-site jukebox, underscoring chews on an all-purpose munchies platter that combines chicken tenders, mozzarella sticks, onion rings, and seasoned fries onto one sprawling salver. Spirits soar on the dance floor thanks to infectious riffs from live bands and DJs, and the dulcet clack of ricocheting balls echoes throughout the lounge on Mondays and Tuesdays during complimentary pool games.
Under the ownership of Federal Hill native Christopher Conti, Blush Winebar pours half and full glasses from hundreds of red, white, and sparkling libations. The upscale watering hole offers more than 100 wines by the glass, each with its own distinct flavor notes and secret cheese crush. A champagne bar highlights the bubbly beverage with glasses, full bottles, and three-flute samplers as well as a selection of champagne-based cocktails, such as the Blush Boom Boom, a mixture of Moët champagne, pomegranate liqueur, Grand Marnier, and orange juice. Executive chef Jacen Scungio blends fresh, local ingredients to create the flatbread pizzas, sliders, and handmade pastas that populate the wine bar’s tapas menu and keep hungry imbibers from trying to stomp their wines back into grapes.