10 Great Bars to Watch the NCAA Tourney Madness

City Guide


Written by Christopher Whitcomb

Published on March 10, 2016

UB Bulls, sports, sports bars, march madeness, basketball, bufalo, buffalo's best bars, college, ncaa, tournament, 716 Food & Sport, 716, things to do

716 Food & Sport / Step Out Buffalo

3…2….1…the clock is winding down, it’s now or never, it’s time for the big moment – you and your friends need to figure out where you’ll be watching March Madness this year. Buzzer beaters, underdogs, half-court prayers that are answered, big dunks and blocked shots – the NCAA tourney is one of the best sports events of the year.  And, it’s even better when you’re able to meet up with friends at a local sports bar for drinks, wings, and celebratory high fives. If it happens to be during work hours, so be it. Local fans may even have more reason to enjoy the tournament this year with the possibility of St. Bonaventure securing an at-large bid.

Watching the NCAA is different than watching other sporting events. With up to four games all happening at once, fans need access to multiple TVs to ensure they never miss a close-game or game-winning trifecta. They also need great beer, delicious food, and crowds ready to cheer. Here’s a look at 10 of the best bars across WNY to meet up with friends and enjoy the Madness!

(716) Food and Sport

Neighborhood: Canalside
7 Scott Street, Buffalo NY 14203
With more TVs than you can count and a 38-foot feature video screen that fans on both the first and second floors can see, (716) Food and Sport is a spectacular destination for watching the tourney. With the ability to feature multiple channels on the main video board at once, (716) will have every second of every game fans want to see available. Located downtown, it’s a perfect spot for hoops fans leaving work early Thursday or Friday to grab a Beef on Weck or nachos, their favorite beer and enjoy the awesomeness that is the first round of the tournament.
Restaurant Info >>


Ballyhoo / Step Out Buffalo


Neighborhood: Cobblestone District/OFW
211 South Park Ave, Buffalo NY 14204
Maybe you’ll be rooting for the Bulldogs during March Madness – or maybe you’ll just head to Ballyhoo to enjoy the dawgs.  While they don’t have enough TVs to show all four games at once, they have an ever-changing, high-quality beer list and delicious sausages – try the TJ Dawg, no really, do it – and sides (like Mac & Cheese) to add to the game-day experience.  The atmosphere is relaxed and fun and the bartenders can also whip up stronger mixed drinks and shots should you need to ease the pain of watching your bracket get busted.
Restaurant Info >>

Thirsty Buffalo

Photo from Thirsty Buffalo’s Facebook

Thirsty Buffalo

Neighborhood: Elmwood Village
555 Elmwood Ave, Buffalo, NY 14222
When the Bonnies made the NCAA Tourney in 2012, this was the official Bona bar for the game. It was packed with fans cheering every missed shot and dunk. It was an experience you can’t recreate just any old day. Whether the Bonnies make it this year or not, Thirsty Buffalo will deliver for sports fans. They’ve got more than enough TVs to cover all the games and can serve up favorites like nachos, burgers, chicken fingers, wings, and even pork belly – crispy fried thick-cut pork belly smothered in BBQ or Hot Honey Garlic Sauce. It’s an awesome place for watching any sporting event.
Restaurant Info >>

Buffalo Brew Pub

Neighborhood: Williamsville / Amherst
6861 Main Street, Buffalo NY 14221
Buffalo Brew Pub brews its own beer, offers free popcorn and peanuts, and packs a menu full of fan favorites making it a top spot to watch March Madness unfold. Try a pint of house favorites like the Buffalo Auto Wreaker Lager or their Prosthetic Home Service Amber Ale.  If you’d rather explore their full list of draft beer, the pub offers a beeriodic table to help you pick a drink perfect to your liking. It’s a great place for beer, sports, and cheering on your favorite team.
Restaurant Info >>

Fat Bob's, BBQ, Buffalo NY, Bar, Step Out Buffalo, Night out in Allentown

Fat Bob’s Bar / Step Out Buffalo

Fat Bob’s Smokehouse

Neighborhood: Allentown
41 Virginia Place, Buffalo, NY 14202
If you know Fat Bob’s Smokehouse, you know it’s beloved for it’s BBQ and Mac & Cheese. Just head to their website and you’ll see mouthwatering BBQ on the grill. Read their menu and feel your taste buds start dancing in your mouth – now imagine pairing that food with a delicious beer, your favorite team on the TV, darts, tunes, and just a fun crowd. That’s what you get essentially every time at Fat Bob’s and it’s a can’t miss spot during this year’s tournament.
Restaurant Info >>

Amherst Ale House Wings, Best WIngs in WNY

Photo from Amherst Pizza and Ale House’s Facebook

Amherst Tap and Ale House

Neighborhood: Getzville
55 Crosspoint Parkway, Getzville NY 14068
Boasting 100 beers to sample and delicious pizza by the pie or the slice, Amherst Tap and Ale House is a sports lovers dream. Watch your favorite teams duke it out on the court while enjoying a pizza with your favorite toppings or try Pizza Fries – your choice of steak fries or seasons waffle fries with mozzarella cheese, seasonings, and cup-and-char pepperoni. No matter how your team does, this place will more than likely be a victory for your taste buds.
Restaurant Info >>

Big Tree Inn

Neighborhood: Orchard Park
4277 Abbott Rd. Orchard Park NY 14127
Rex Ryan has been here. Jim Kelly has been here. Thurman, Bruce, Andre, and Tasker too – Big Tree Inn sports bar has legendary status as a favorite watering hole for Bills greats and fans too. Big Tree Inn appeals to any-and-all sports fans though, and it will definitely work for those in the Southtowns eager to catch their favorite team. Not only a great place for wings, cold beer, and fun, Big Tree Inn is a great place to hear a story or two about great Buffalo athletes. And what Buffalonian doesn’t love a good story or two?
Restaurant Info >>


Gordon’s on Delaware

Neighborhood: North Buffalo
2263 Delaware Ave, Buffalo, NY 14216
In 2012, Gordon’s earned recognition as one of the best sports bars in the state – so it’s a lock for a list of best places to watch March Madness in Buffalo. Tons of TVs, a menu full of delicious burgers, and a draft list that offers something for everyone – Gordon’s offers a great fan experience. While they can’t guarantee your team wins, they promise you won’t go home dissatisfied with any other piece – or taste – of the experience.
Restaurant Info >>

Brickhouse Tavern & Tap

Neighborhood: Amherst
4120 Maple Rd., Amherst NY 14226
Brickhouse Tavern & Tap is a great spot for game-winning shots, food, and fun. From hand-crafted cocktails like the Ghost Car with Ghost White Wiskey to calm the nerves in critical moments of the games, to extensive beer lists, and menu items including Drunken Pork Chops, Yard Bird Sandwiches, and Duck Wings – wow. Brickhouse also has ample TVs and comfortable seating to really dig in for an afternoon of watching all the college hoops action.
Restaurant Info >>

Armor Inn Tap Room

Neighborhood: Hamburg
5381 Abott Rd. Hamburg NY 14075
Armor Inn offers a bit of everything for everyone, from live music, brewfests, and Blues Bikes & BBQ nights. So, when Armor Inn needs to be there for sports fans, it delivers as expected. Numerous TVs, brews like the Armor Inn Session IPA and other favorites from local breweries like Big Ditch, Resurgence, and Hamburg Brewing make this an enjoyable place for any big game. Not to mention the delicious BBQ ranging from ribs, to chicken, and even wings.
Restaurant Info >>

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Written by <a href="" target="_self">Christopher Whitcomb</a>

Written by Christopher Whitcomb

Christopher Whitcomb is a Marketing Communications Manager at CannonDesign. He grew up in Salamanca, NY and now lives with his wife in Hamburg, NY. Chris enjoys long runs, good beer, warm weather, swimming, golf and Bills wins.
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