Grab your brackets because March Madness is officially upon us. Now through April 8th, the NCAA Division 1 tournament is happening all across the country – ending with the championship game in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Because we’ve got a lot of basketball to watch, we’ll need food and beer to wash it down. Regardless of if your team is in the running, or out in the first round, head downtown for your own March Madness celebration!
Located inside the exclusive Pendry Hotel, Nason’s Beer Hall is trendy enough for the bandwagoners but has enough TVs for the die-hards. Join Nason’s for Brackets & Brew, their homage to March Madness. With 24 taps and 23 tv’s, this new beer hall will start filling up quick. Grab a snack, share a dish or eat dinner with your friends- Nason’s has dining options for every kind of appetite. Start your meal by sharing the Totchos, tater tots topped with pork shoulder, beer cheese sauce, pickled serrano, bacon, and crema. Moving on to the Single or Double Dog, a beef hot dog topped with kimchi, kewpie mayo, green onion, potato bun, with a choice of fries or BBQ chips. We’d call this menu traditional American, with a twist.
Few places can walk the line between bar and restaurant the way El Chingon does. This spot likes to party, but it shouldn’t discount their fantastic food. Through March Madness, El Chingon will be serving themed “package meals” to celebrate basketballs biggest month. The Sweet Sixteen includes your choice of two tacos with a well cocktail or draft beer for $15, the Elite Eight comes with a bucket of five beers, a flight of tacos, and choice of Bad Ass Fries or Nachos Libres, priced at $50; and the Final Four includes a flight of shots, a flight of margaritas and a flight of tacos for $75. If you’re not bringing the whole team, try their Bad Ass Bowl (above) and one of their famous Watermelon Margaritas.
The up and coming Makers Quarter area of Downtown is becoming home to trendy bars and restaurants – one of them being 10 Barrel Brewing. Sit on the rooftop overlooking downtown or head inside to watch the game at our only brewery on the list. Our favorite thing on the 10 Barrel menu is their Jalapeno Popper Burger, made with a chuck and Wagyu beef patty, fried jalapeño, cream cheese, jalapeño aioli, ranch, bacon, tomato, lettuce, red onion, pickle, and served on an O’Brien’s bakery jalapeño cheddar bun. If you need something a little lighter, their beer battered Fish Tacos are hard to beat. Because everyone loves a pick-up game, 10 Barrel will be giving you one shot at the hoop. If you make it, you’ll get a free pint of the beer of your choosing!
It’s hard to call Werewolf just one thing. It’s a bottomless mimosas brunch spot, a karaoke bar, a late night food spot- in summation, it’s a great time with even better food. Often overlooked for the flashier restaurants in Gaslamp, Werewolf has all you need to celebrate March Madness. Come in for brunch before the game, to try their famous Breakfast Balls (pictured above), hushpuppies soaked in country gravy, topped with bacon bits. After 3 pm, the menu changes making room for an array of burgers, tacos, and sandwiches while you watch your team. We highly recommend the Pho King Amazing sandwich, made with honey sriracha glazed pork belly, pickled carrots, cucumbers, habanero dill pickles, cilantro, dojo sauce, served on a fresh baked roll with fries. Stay late for their nightly karaoke which starts at 9 pm!
We hope you’ll fill your March Madness with a few of these spots! And if you leave room for dessert, our Downtown Walking Tour is the best way to end the season.