New bar: Pastimes Pub & Grill
A new North Side sports bar is flying under the radar, but it won't for long.
When owners Andy Greene and Wes Appell opened the doors at Pastimes Pub & Grill a few weeks ago, they used their experience as bar managers at the Filling Station and Average Joe's to build a bar that's worth checking out.
Pastimes is first and foremost a sports bar with a neighborhood feel. Nearly a dozen flat-screens and three projectors showcase all of your favorite teams, so you've got an unobstructed view of any game from every seat in the house.
Despite the sports-bar feel, the decor is slightly upscale. A mod black and red paint job pairs nicely with a glossy wood-paneled bar.
Speaking of the bar, it's massive - big enough to house two islands behind it.
I knew Pastimes was a friendly place when a delightfully cheerful bartender quickly took my drink order and offered a menu. That menu is the most pleasing, and mouth-watering, part of Pastimes.
It was full of house-made pub grub that far exceeds the standard fare. The cheese sticks are a delicious blend of mozzarella and blue cheese, and hot sauce in the breading adds a nice kick. It's almost like a hot wing that's been stuffed with cheese.
Also recommended is the pot roast sandwich, filled with melts-in-your-mouth-tender beef and topped with gooey cheddar.
You'll need to wash it all down, and there are plenty of options to quench your thirst. A number of domestic ($2.50) and import bottles ($3.50) are available, but the best bet is a frosty 25 oz. mug.
Fill it up with beer from one of a dozen taps ($4-$5), or take advantage of the Labatt Blue draft special ($2.50) that runs all day every day.
Spirits range from $3 for wells to $6 for top-shelf, and there's a $3 shot of the day special.
The large patio will be fun when winter's over, and plans for gameday tailgate events are in the works.
Pastimes Pub & Grill
1333 Worthington Centre Dr., North Side
11 a.m.-2:30 a.m. daily
11 a.m.-7 p.m. daily with lunch specials
Goose Island 312
Sam Adams Boston Lager
Sam Adams seasonal