Badda Bing! Bar, 7004 Cortez Rd., prides itself on being all about football, especially during football season. And that’s what drew us there Sunday afternoon.
Subscribing to NFL Sunday Ticket is a bit out of my price range, but Badda Bing! has it. My wife (and photographer) found a table in the corner with two flat-screen televisions on either wall. I watched my Bears win, she watched her Dolphins lose and we both listened to the Packers and the Cardinals – the featured game of the day on the center television behind the bar.
Prior to the 1 p.m. games, the bar already had a decent crowd. In fact, there looked to be only a couple stools remaining at the big bar counter that seats more than 20. BaddaBing! is arranged in a classic sports-bar style with a square bar counter that accounts for most of the real estate, three tables between the entrance and the bar and a side room with two pool tables and more tables.
But the pool tables, video golf and juke box weren’t getting any love Sunday. Not with football dominating the afternoon and a bar full of football fans. A handful of NASCAR fans were there, too. And BaddaBing! was able to accommodate.
Bartender Tammy Nipper said if there are enough televisions to satisfy the football crowd, she’ll turn on NASCAR or a baseball game on request.
“But we’re football first,” Tammy said.
And BaddaBing! knows how to keep its football-fan patrons happy. The bar doesn’t sell food but it sure does deliver. When the first halftime rolls around Sunday afternoon, the bar offers a free buffet of a different entre each week. Pizza, wings, hot dogs – bar food, Nipper said.
For Sunday night games, draft beers are free from kickoff until the first points are scored. That includes all beers on tap, and I’m thrilled that Guinness is included in that mix because rarely does a discounted beer special also include Guinness. Buckets of five domestic bottles are $10 all day Sunday.
The special shot of the day, blended in its own special machine behind the bar, is $3 all day every day. And it’s always a new shot flavor. Sunday’s special was a watermelon mixture, and it went down way too smooth.
Happy hour, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week (the bar opens at 11 a.m.) has $2.50 wells, $2 cans including 16-oz Pabst Blue Ribbons, $2.50-$3.50 bottles, $1.50 small drafts and $2.75-$3.75 20-oz pints. Regular prices are only a quarter to 50 cents higher, Nipper said. The bar prides itself on serving an authentic 20-oz pint – in addition to serving draft beer in glasses, not plastic cups.
But its low prices are Badda Bing!'s trademark.
“There’s a lot of people in the service industry who come in here after work,” she said. “People like to see these specials on beers and wells. So we try to cater to the working person.”
Badda Bing Bar of Bradenton has two sister locations in Sarasota. Click here to visit their website.
Around Bradenton this weekend:
- Mannatees Sports Grill, 7423 Manatee Ave. W., has a daily happy hour from noon to 7 p.m. seven days a week with domestic 20-oz. drafts for $2.75, $3 wells, $4 calls and $3 house wines.
- Smitty's Pub & Grille, 3812 Manatee Ave. W., is hosting a VW Party & Show starting at 8 p.m. Friday. Swing by and check out classic “buggies,” then try Smitty’s famous wings and a few pints of beer.
- Grammy Award winning country band Gloriana is playing at Joyland, 5520 14th St. W., fresh off the biggest song in its career, the chart-topping single "(Kissed You) Good Night.” Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 day of show. Get your tickets in advance at Joyland or order online here – and check out the upcoming concerts on Nov. 16 (Joe Nichols) and Nov. 30 (Parlamee). Doors open at 7 p.m. Saturday.
- Joe’s Bar, 5254 SR 64 E., has complimentary pizza and football on Sunday. Pizza comes out at 4 p.m. and is good until supplies last. Buckets of beer are $10. Joe’s is Bradenton’s newest bar. On Sundays it is open 11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. and is always smoke free.
- O'Bricks Irish Pub & Martini Bar, 427 Old Main St., has all its signature martinis on special all day Monday for $6 each. Captain Morgans are $3 all day every day.