Philadelphia’s vibrant bar scene may seem like too much too handle. So, we searched high and low for the five best sports bars in the city.
Buffalo Billiards (118 Chestnut Street)
Buffalo Billiards is located in historic Old City. This billiards-based bar provides a competitive atmosphere for its patrons. And if a game of 8-ball isn’t your cup of tea, check out the bar’s arcade games or dart boards. As the only real sports bar in the vicinity, Buffalo Billiards draws a large crowd for all sport seasons. With comfortable seating areas and large televisions around the bar, it’s easily a crowd favorite.
“I think the activities are definitely a draw for people,” events manager Ryan Kunsman said. “Especially on like a terrible rainy day. Sitting at a bar can be as depressing as a rainy day but if you have something to do, that changes everything.”
McGillin’s has been serving drinks for more than 150 years. But don’t let its age fool you. This cozy bar provides a great atmosphere for college students and older patrons alike, with great drink specials to boot. While the bar only recently added televisions (the owners banned them before this past decade), it is still a great spot to watch local sports games.
Located right in Center City, it is easily accessible by public transportation. The bar is two floors but is still packed on most nights. But don’t worry, friendly wait staff like MaryKate Kroliczak make the crowds worth it. Catch Kroliczak when she’s not too busy and she’ll be sure to tell you some great stories, such as the one about the ghost that supposedly haunts the bar.
Cavanaugh’s Rittenhouse boasts a large selection of beers and different drink specials everyday. If that isn’t enough to draw you in, the split level bar is also home to a dozen televisions. Right in the heart of Rittenhouse, Cavanaugh’s is the perfect spot to sit back relax and watch the game, especially after a hard day at the office or class. The bar also offers a ton of delicious grub, so be sure to check out more than their awesome beer list.
Chickie’s and Pete’s (1526 Packer Avenue)
It may seem cliché or redundant to put Chickie’s and Pete’s on this list. After all, it’s probably the most famous name to come out of Philadelphia. But, then again, there’s a reason it’s on every list when it comes to sports bars in Philly.
For one, the South Philly outpost has televisions bigger than most student apartments and is only steps away from the stadiums. In addition, the food (hello, crab fries!) is fresh and delicious. They offer daily beer specials and are often home to many events with local athletes and radio stations.
And of course, let’s not forget their beer towers. What better way to watch a game than with 30 plus ounces of beer right at your table and all for less than $30?
Xfinity Live! couldn’t get any closer to the action if it tried. Located literally right across the street from all three stadiums, the complex offers five different bars to visitors. Each bar offers a different experience, as each focus on the various sports in Philly. Want to walk around and bar hop? No problem. It’s as easy as walking across the hall. Drink specials vary from bar to bar but you’re more than likely to find a perfect match somewhere in the huge facility.
Plus, there are enough televisions to keep you updated with every step you take. And with how crowded the complex gets, especially during the summer, you’re more than likely to make a few new friends.
-Images and text by John Iatesta and Samantha Kordelski