The first two days of March Madness weekend for me and Kristine has become a wonderful and fun bonding experience over the years. We generally spend Thursday and Friday visiting one or two of our favorite sports bars so we can enjoy the camaraderie of other crazy basketball fans out to root for their favorite college teams and hoping theirs would make it to the final four and beyond.
Thursday we were up early, posted our brackets, dressed and made our way to our favorite place for the first day of March Madness, The Bungalow Billiards Sports Grill at Shirlington.
We always head to Bungalow for tip-off. One, the bar has the best fried kosher dill pickles, dipped in a buttermilk batter with a yummy garlic ranch dipping sauce that are beyond delicious. Then there is the staff and patrons who are always fun and very friendly. Kristine has been working there for several years now and she has introduced me to all the managers, bartenders and wait staff, all of whom are just plain nice folks.
We bring our brackets, pens, and a yellow marker all in an effort to keep track of our picks while we enjoy a cold glass of beer, the food, and have great conversations with other patrons. As the day wore on my back started to act up so we decided to head home. Kristine prepared my favorite chicken enchilada dish for dinner and we settled in for another night of great basketball.
Friday we headed over to the Crystal City Sport Pub in Arlington. I must tell you this was the largest sports bar I have ever been to. It was three floors of televisions, screens and sport memorabilia that was, for me, just wonderful eye candy. I counted 31 televisions/screens on our floor alone. WOW! A treat later in the afternoon was finding a signed photo of the Washington Redskins Hogettes among all the great photos that covered the walls of the women’s bathroom. I thought this was very funny indeed.
One thing I really enjoyed was the sports trivia that was displayed on one of the large screens while we waited for tip-off. The trivia included such fun facts as, “The first insignia on a football helmet was in 1950 when the L.A. Rams painted yellow horns on their blue leather helmets and the first hockey puck was frozen cow dung”. Who knew?
We settled in on the third floor because Kristine’s friend Roxanne was working that day. I met Roxanne once before and she is just a nice, nice woman who always goes out of her way to make sure her patrons are well taken care of.
We started with the Buffalo Chicken Dip that was a creamy, creamy dip loaded with tiny pieces of chicken then baked and served with an array of multi-colored tortilla chips and several stalks of celery. Kristine started to laugh as I kept saying, “Oh, my, this is really good”.
I love burgers and the burger I chose was just great. I ordered the North Carolina Burger—this burger was a combination of the pub’s Ultimate 8oz. burger topped with the house pulled pork barbeque and melted Provolone cheese, and then, topped with their homemade barbeque sauce. This burger was so, so, so good. The sauce’s combination of vinegar, sugar and red pepper sauce was a veritable mouthwatering experience.
We had a great afternoon but it was time to head back home and settle in for the evening and do, what else, watch more basketball. Kristine has decided that she has created a monster as she watches me go from quietly enjoying the game to yelling at the television as I watch one nail biter of a game after another. So, how was my bracket doing? Well, it was hard to watch Georgetown, Missouri and New Mexico loose but, my bracket was doing just fine. Duke won and that was great for Kristine.