Nashville has it going on any given day — with live music blaring down Honky Tonk Row 365 days of the year, it’s always a party down in the South — but game days, specifically, are animated in this city located in the heart of SEC country.
As Nashville continues to grow, and as its tourist boom is at an all-time high, more and more bars are offering diverse game-day offerings to appeal to both natives and visitors alike. Not a hometown fan and looking for the best place to sidle up with a whiskey this football season? No problem. Here’s where to get your drink on in Music City whether you’re here for football or simply looking for a good time.
City Tap House
Celebrating its first football season since opening last winter, the bustling downtown City Tap House has already been chosen as the go-to spot for Notre Dame fans, hosting a watch party in its lounge every time the Fighting Irish take the field. But it’s also got dozens of TVs woven throughout its sprawling spaces — including one massive 4-foot-by-3-foot projector that can play up to eight different games (or one if it’s a biggie) — and on the rooftop, which means no matter where you sit, be assured you can see a screen.
City Tap House; 204 3rd Avenue South, Nashville; nashville.citytap.com
Some like it hot, and those who do often flock to Party Fowl, a hot chicken-joint-meets-sports bar with three locations in the greater Nashville area (warning: Order “Poultrygeist” level of heat and you’re guaranteed to sweat — or at the very least, cluck). The biggest outpost of them all, Party Fowl’s Donelson location boasts 46 TVs and six sound zones. Florida fans gravitate here on game days when an alumni group has a standing reservation to do the Gator Chomp. Every Sunday, pro football fans can stop by any of the locations to enjoy every live, out-of-market game thanks to NFL Sunday Ticket.
Party Fowl, 2620 Lebanon Pike, Nashville; partyfowl.com
The George Jones
One of downtown’s best-kept secrets is the rooftop at the George Jones, a museum dedicated to the late country legend who died just two years before it opened in 2015. And what’s the second-best thing to being in Nissan Stadium on game day? Viewing the game from the riverfront as you watch them play on the projector and hear the crowd’s cheers reverberate across the Cumberland River. Both the George Jones rooftop bar and smokehouse — which can comfortably accommodate 1,000 — air the major and NFL college games on their 30 HD TVs, with dedicated screens to the Titans anytime they’re playing. Home team aside, many Chicago, Baltimore, and New York fans congregate at the George Jones throughout the fall, as well as a number of SEC alumni groups.
The George Jones, 128 2nd Avenue North, Nashville; georgejones.com
Beyond the Edge
Looking for a college game on the big screen? Whether you root for Tennessee or Alabama, support Ohio State or Penn state, Beyond the Edge is your spot. On Saturdays, the bar plays all the collegiate biggies with 102.5 the Game doing a live remote for the SEC Game of the Week. On Sundays, there’s a large contention of Chicago fans from Bear Down Nashville representing the Windy City. The sound is on for the main game, but there’s also the option for sound on a second matchup. Beyond the Edge is 21 and up (meaning smoking is allowed) and offers a bevy of game-day specials, including regular 2-for-1s.
112 South 11th Street, Nashville; beyondtheedge.net
Von Elrod’s Beer Garden & Sausage House
Its location alone — right at the entrance to the Nashville Sounds stadium — indicates that Von Elrod’s knows a thing or two about sports, but it’s the setting that sells it as the ultimate game-day stop. With plenty of communal seating both inside and out, wall-to-wall big-screen TVs, and a menu of house-made pretzels, fried cheese curds, and delicious hand-cranked sausages, it’s basically game-day base camp. Like many local establishments, Von Elrod’s broadcasts all Titans games throughout the season, as well as many college games. For every Monday Night Football matchup, “Chief Sausage Officer” Jason Brumm will develop a signature dish that reflects the cuisine of the home team’s city.
Von Elrod’s Beer Garden & Sausage House, 1004 4th Avenue North, Nashville; vonelrods.com
Loyal to the Big Ten? So is Germantown Pub (or rather, its game-day goers are). You’ll find drink specials aplenty no matter your team loyalty, though, including a tall domestic and Jameson for $10. Monday nights offer $1 wings. Germantown Pub is located in North Nashville outside of the downtown fray, meaning a more laid-back game-day experience and, perhaps most importantly, parking.
Germantown Pub, 708 Monroe Street, Nashville; thegermantownpub.com
Three bars in one — a saloon, cantina, and trolley (yes, trolley!) — Germantown Depot has a little something for everyone including ample lawn games (think darts, cornhole, giant Jenga and more) and 27 TVs, plus 4 cabana TVs. There are also outdoor cabanas available for a minimum, which include sound, bucket specials every game day, and a cozy space from which to cheer on your team. Germantown Depot prides itself on being “a home to all fans with no specific fan club,” though the bar has already seen sizable Patriots and University of Tennessee groups this season. What you’re ordering: the green tea drink made with Jameson, one of the depot’s bestsellers.
Germantown Depot, 1318 6th Avenue North, Nashville; germantowndepot.com
As its name suggests, Neighbors is very much a neighborhood dive bar, situated in the residential Sylvan Park area where 20- and 30-somethings come in droves to nosh on the loaded nachos, brisket sandwich, and other filling bar bites while watching their team on one of the many TVs. Bonus: There’s a patio that allows dogs so your pooch doesn’t have to be left out of the game-day festivities.
Neighbors Nashville; 4425 Murphy Road, Nashville; neighborsnashville.com
Winners is right smack in the middle of Vanderbilt country, meaning co-eds populate this long-time favorite, right next door to companion Losers. It also houses the long-running, popular Monday and Thursday night musical smorgasbord Whiskey Jam. But on game days, it’s packed with SEC fans supporting the Commodores, Vols, and other teams. Stick around for karaoke, which takes place every Friday or Saturday night.
Winners, 1913 Division Street, Nashville; winnersbarnashville.com