Want to get out of the house for the big game but don't want to pay hundreds of dollars for tickets only to watch the Cowboys lose on Jerry's massive super-screen? You could go to a sports bar like Gavin suggests in his list of Dallas' best sports bars, but the food will leave you almost as sad as the sight of everyone staring into their fantasy-football apps.
Tired nachos, rubbery chicken wings bathing in ranch, burgers cooked until the meat is the color of wet cardboard: These are just a few of the atrocities you can find at your average sports bar. So why not head to a good restaurant with a TV or two where the game is always on? Here are a few of our favorites.
Nova (Pictured above) You'll find the TV down at the end of the bar, where it curves like a fishhook, making conversation easy. Whether it's Tony Romo's latest flubbed pass or Sean Lee twisting his other knee getting Gatorade, there's always a lively conversation to be had at this end of the bar. Start with the potato skins dressed with salmon and finish with a pizza or one of the specials. You'll still be here when the game is over.
Cock and Bull On Sunday, Cock and Bull is packed with football fans watching teams from all over the country while they pound gyros, burgers and Reuben sandwiches all afternoon. There's no massive flat screen to get lost in, but that's OK. Pretend you're watching football circa 1972. I hear the Steelers did something pretty cool that year.
Lakewood Landing Talk about vintage TVs. The big screen in the bar room at Lakewood looks like something you'd find in your uncle Johnny's basement. The Landing doesn't open till the afternoon, so you can only watch evening games here. But the burgers, nachos and wings -- the trifecta of bar food -- are all first rate.
Scotch and Sausage This Oak Lawn beer garden is new to the scene, but some of their sausages really hit the spot, and there are two gargantuan televisions in the main dining room. Long communal tables sit perpendicular to the TVs, and so long as you're on the right side, you're going to have a great view. (Your friend is going to have a very stiff neck Monday.) As a bonus, they serve beer in massive mugs by the liter. The mugs are pretty heavy. See how many you can handle.
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Goodfriend Just to your left inside the front door of Goodfriend, there's a massive TV flanked with three tired couches. If you can get a seat here, you're set for all of Sunday. But even if you can't, there are plenty of televisions bolted to the walls around the bar. There are also delicious burgers that have been good enough to draw people from the neighborhood as well as all over Dallas.
Lalibela You wouldn't think that an Ethiopian restaurant would be a good place to watch football -- and, yes, we're talking American football where the tackles actually hurt but the players don't writhe in agony like babies -- but Lalibela is an absolute show when an evening game is on. Regulars pull tables together, forming a mass of fast-paced words you won't understand but cries of joy and agony that you will. They're shaking fistfuls of 20s at the TV while you try and figure out how to turn floppy bread into a fork and you'll envy their enthusiasm. When you're done eating, you could join them if you like. They'd be all too happy to take your money.