When you’re not watching Game 2 of the Warriors-Mavericks NBA playoff series at the Chase Center, you need a plan. It’s TGIF so skip the couch and consider one of these fun places.
Emporium Arcade Bar, San Francisco and Oakland
Known for their variety of arcade games and cocktails, these fun 21+ venues transform into party venues during Warriors playoff season.
The screens: Lots of big ones at both locations, with SF also boasting a 50ft screen and two 15ft screens.
The menu: Homemade cocktails (think green tea slushies, pineapple mojitos) and a long list of beers on tap. Pick up a Warriors game day special from Hennessy and a Modelo for $15. You should plan to eat before or after the game.
Details: 616 Divisadero St., San Francisco and 1805 Telegraph Ave., Oakland. www.emporiumarcadebar.com
New Parkway Theater, Oakland
This community-oriented theater has been showing major sporting events on screen for years. Buy tickets online in advance (it’s sure to sell out) and come over at least 30 minutes before kick-off to cheer on the dubs with 150 other fans.
The screens: One of their big cinema screens, of course.
The menu: The theater café offers a home-style range of pasta, pizza and appetizers. And you can always eat freshly popped popcorn and other classic movie snacks.
Details: Tickets, $12 (or $10 for students, seniors). 474 24th St., Oakland; 510-658-7900; www.thenewparkway.com
La Barrique, San Jose
This is the most unconventional “sports bar” on the scene. Entrepreneurs Helen and Harry Nguyen assembled an impressive culinary team for their upscale Franco-Vietnamese concept, then decided to broaden the restaurant’s appeal to sports lovers.
The screens: A 200 inch TV in the dining room as well as additional screens in the bar.
The menu: The main room has dishes like Duck Two Ways. In the bar you can order dishes for sharing such as pork belly, tuna tartare and of course chicken wings. The long list of wines, sparkling and others, prefers France and California. Cocktails include the popular Lychee Frozé and the Trái Xoài (Mango) Margarita. And yes, there are several beers on tap.
Details: 969 Story Road, San Jose, downtown Vietnam.
Jack’s Brewing Company, Sports Pub & Grill, Fremont
They need a long name to cover all the roles Jack plays. It is a microbrewery, a sports venue and a family restaurant. This long-time favorite has held a prime spot in the hub for more than two decades, and has been helmed all along by brother-sister duo Steadman-Wallace.
The screens: In addition to the 10-foot “monster screen,” there is an 80-inch and 20 other televisions.
The menu: Regulars have made the beer-battered arctic cod and chips, Jack’s BBQ ribs, and giant cheese steaks top sellers. There’s also a wide selection of burgers, sandwiches, and salads, as well as a kids’ menu.
Sports-themed beers — Grid Iron Amber Ale, Hardwood Pale Ale, and Penalty Shot Porter — are brewed on-site. There is also a full bar.
Details: 39176 Argonaut Way, Fremont; www.jacksbrewing.com
Sports grill by Double D, Los Gatos
Dean and Darin Devincenzi may be voted “the best sports bar in Silicon Valley” year after year, but to them their place is a restaurant first, a bar second. In any case, like all good sports venues, it serves also as a museum displaying cool sports memorabilia.
The screens: 32, including an 85 inch and several 75s.
The menu: Customer favorites include the Korean-style baby back ribs and the Three Alarm Fire, a fried chicken sandwich with pepper jack cheese, jalapeño slaw and chipotle aioli. Six pasta dishes and several pizzas are on offer.
You’ll find 10 craft beers on tap as well as a full bar for cocktails, including the award-winning tequila-based Smokey Wildflower.
Details: 354 N Santa Cruz Avenue, Los Gatos; www.doubleds.com
Stadium Pub, Walnut Creek
The Stadium Pub, believed to be Walnut Creek’s oldest sports bar, celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. Fans fill this old-school spot year-round, and there are screens and seating both indoors and on the front patio. Check out the great sports photos and other memorabilia.
The screens: almost 50
The menu: Bar classics, plus house-made corned beef and kosher hot dogs and sausages. The French fries have their own menu category: you can order them original, spicy, cheesy, garlicky or topped with chili. More than 15 beers are on tap. Signature cocktails include the homemade “slightly spicy” Hail Mary Bloody Mary.
Details: 1420 Lincoln Avenue, Walnut Creek; www.thestadiumpubwc.com
Rookies Sports Lodge, San Jose
Rookies offers sports fans a choice of two vibes. There’s the “Cheers”-style lodge vibe of the original, which opened in 2010, and the sleek urban vibe of the newer downtown location.
The screens: At the Meridian location you will find 20 indoors and 9 outdoors. Downtown has 33.
The menu: Both places serve burgers, wings, nachos, pizza, salads, and bowls (Cajun, teriyaki) — and most sandwiches and burgers come with your choice of side, including homemade chili, salad, or fries with salsa.
There’s a monster list of about 40 craft beers on tap, with a focus on Bay Area breweries. Both locations also offer wine and a full bar.
Details: 1535 Meridian Ave. and 99 S. First St., San Jose; www.rookieslodge.com
The old pro, Palo Alto
This hangout has been around since 1964. That was back in the bar’s El Camino Real days; For many years, Ramona Street has been home to The Old Pro, whose walls are lined with fascinating sports memorabilia.
The screens: More than 24 inside and outside.
The menu: Only in California, game day dishes include on-trend locally sourced dishes like Smoked Diestel Turkey Chili, made from non-GMO organic turkey; an avocado kale caesar salad; and crispy Brussels sprouts with Thai chili glaze. They also have the obligatory wings, sliders and pizza.
There is a full bar with 18 taps, mostly local craft beers.
Details: 541 Ramona St., Palo Alto; www.oldpropa.com