It?s a typical night at Mickey's Bar and Grill?sports games glisten on rows of flat-screen HDTVs, upbeat jukebox tunes fill the air, and friends crowd around the bar, calling for shots of Jack Daniels and pints of Guinness. Bartenders bustle about behind the bar, whipping up the martinis and mixed drinks lauded by reporters from The Record. Servers emerge from the kitchen, bearing platters of lauded, plump buffalo wings, juicy burgers, and mini sliders. Some nights, daring guests take the stage for karaoke, boldly belting out popular tunes or whispering confessions of overdue library books into the microphone amid the cheers and applause of the boisterous audience.
When the big game spills into overtime, the last words you want to hear are "last call." That's why Pub 46's bartenders stay on the safe side by whipping up mixed drinks and pouring beer until 3 a.m. every night. The kitchen closes at midnight, ending its daily feasts of American bar food staples such as handmade sausage-and-pepper pizzas, hot turkey sliders, and buckets of fried or broiled wings. Feasts unfold on the pub's outdoor, smoke-friendly patio or indoors amid more than 30 HDTVs tuned to everything from baseball and ultimate fighting to the reality hit Coolest Referee Coin Flips.
Oak Ale House is an eatery divided in half?one side is a sports bar, and the other is an old-fashioned Italian restaurant. Paintings of Italy hang in the latter section, where families crowd long tables piled high with plates of pasta, pizza, and burgers. The menu unfolds to reveal a m?lange of American-Italian staples such as penne in a creamy vodka sauce, and New York strip steaks that sizzle out the national anthem as they?re cooked. Back in the kitchen, ovens bake thick and thin pizzas to a bubbly golden brown, and grills heat up eight types of hamburgers to sate hamburgervores.
Beyond the guarded border dividing the two establishments lies a sports bar, where frothy brews pour from kegs and live music beckons toes to start tapping. The bar also houses seven flat-screen TVs, billiards, darts, and karaoke on select nights.
Governor Chris Christie said that Redd's Restaurant & Bar is the "Times Squares of New Jersey," and its ubiquitous high-definition TVs and lively tailgating festivities support the comparison. Down the block from MetLife Stadium and the IZOD Center, Redd's supplies pints to those watching games on TV, stopping in to chow down on sesame-crusted chicken teriyaki, or trekking to the stadium for live sports and music. Onsite shuttle service speeds fans off to games at MetLife Stadium without the hassle of walking or asking an offensive lineman for a piggyback ride. Upstairs, a 2,000-square-foot balcony looks out on MetLife Stadium.
Several years ago, 381 Main Bar & Grill had an existential crisis. It was a sleek martini bar with white leather couches, white barstools, and white walls, all accentuated with pink uplighting. It was a place people could go for a stiff drink, but it wanted to be something else—an edgy sports bar that fed people tasty food in addition to good drinks.
So the owner, Steve Baskinger, shuttered 381's doors and set to work on an intensive overhaul. He ripped out the old wood floor and polished the 100-year-old cement floors to a sheen. He created foot rails for the bar with 8,000 pounds of railroad track, and he added industrial-size ceiling fans, 17 LED TVs, and kitchen appliances, including a brick pizza oven.
According to Nightclub & Bar magazine, the new decor includes a 1970s-era Yankees scoreboard and custom-made Yankees and New York Giants surfboards and sharks. It even has a drumhead signed by Ringo Starr.
The bar opened after five months of construction and quickly became a hot spot—locals were drawn to the bar's neighborhood feel, classic American eats, and craft beers. They also enjoyed the freshly baked pizzas crisped in the brick oven, which uses flames made from a fire recipe that's been passed down for generations.
381 is now a sports bar, but if people are busy the night of the game, they can show up for Trivia Tuesdays, Acoustic Wednesdays, and monthly craft beer events. During the summer months, they can sip a chilled beer on the outdoor patio.
An island of wooden shelves buds from the dining room's floor, displaying draft-beer taps, glinting rocks glasses, and flat-screen TVs alive with sports. Nearby, plates of grilled paninis, buffalo wings in 15 flavors, and fish ‘n' chips clatter onto a polished bar and lacquered tables, drawing nervous glances from collectors of mint-condition napkins. Clevelands Tap Room's newly revised menu includes time-tested pub fare with a few adventurous accents in the form of pickled ginger and wasabi mayo on ahi-tuna burgers and grilled pineapple on pizzas with homemade sauces. If patrons find themselves in the bar on the right night, they can enjoy NFL Sundays, team trivia, or bean-bag-toss tournaments.