March. It’s usually when we get our first glimpse of spring weather. Obviously exciting because of St. Paddy’s Day. And for some, it’s the month of March Madness. We get it – you either love March Madness, or you’re looking for somewhere to avoid the basketball crowds to just hang out with some friends. Either way, we’ve got you covered! We compiled a list of 8 bars to watch the games, and 5 places to hang if you’d rather *not* watch.

Where to go to watch March Madness


March Madness
Image via Mullens Bar & Grill

If you’re sneaking out from work mid-day, head to Mullen’s to grab lunch and watch some of the games. But be careful, with their great atmosphere, you probably won’t want to go back to work.

Smokin’ Joe’s

March Madness
Image via Smokin’ Joe’s Saloon

Smokin’ Joe’s has great food, and tons of drink options at their bar. Looking for a beer they don’t have on draft to bring your favorite team luck? Head upstairs to check out their bottle selection…and take a six-pack home.

Jerome Bettis’ Grille 36

March Madness
Image via Grille 36

If you weren’t clear about Grille 36 being a sports bar (hello, The Bus), their menu definitely gives it away. Salads are The Field, apps are under Kickoff, desserts are Overtime…you get the idea. Talk about the perfect place to watch all the games!

William Penn Tavern

March Madness
Image via William Penn Tavern

William Penn Tavern has something for everyone, including a heated full outdoor smoking bar. They have specials on plenty of beers to get you through the madness, too.


March Madness
Image via Red Beard’s

Another great downtown option is Redbeard’s. There are plenty of TVs at the bar so you won’t miss a second of the action. And keep an eye out for their spring drink menu in case cocktails are your jam.


March Madness
Image via Primanti Bros

Duh. Do we even need to say anything else about going to Primanti’s to watch a game? We’ll set your out-of-office for you.

Carson City Saloon

March Madness
Image via Carson City Saloon

If you’ve never watched a game at Carson City Saloon, have you ever even watched a game at a bar? They have a giant screen in addition to their other TVs, so you’ll feel like you’re court-side.

Dive Bar & Grille

March Madness
Image via Dive Bar

Dive Bar might not have been in your sweet 16 bars to watch the game at, but they should be! They’re offering some great specials throughout the entire tournament, so grab your bracket and a seat at the bar.

Where to go to *not* watch March Madness

Roundabout Brewery

March Madness
Image via Roundabout Brew

If you yield to good beers, then Roundabout Brewery is your people. Are your people? Either way, you’ll want to go there to avoid the madness.

Smallman Galley

March Madness
Image via Smallman Galley

We know you love Smallman Galley, but did you realize how great it would be to avoid the basketball crowds? We’re grabbing a table while you thank us for reminding you.

East End Brewing

March Madness
Image via East End Brewing

Buy a good friend a good beer without the buzzers blaring over your conversation at East End. FYI – Justin Severino is behind the restaurant they’re adding to the Brewpub, and it will be opening very soon.


March Madness
Image via Franktuary

Heck yes, we’ll eat a hot dog and poutine and avoid basketball at Franktuary! And with multiple locations in the city, they have you covered no matter where you are.

Voodoo Brewery

March Madness
Image via Voodoo Brewing

No, we’re not suggesting you drive to Meadville or Erie to skip the basketball crowds. Just head to Voodoo in Homestead! The beers are flowing, and their food menu is small-ish but mighty.

This content was provided by a local, independent contributor to Made in PGH, a lifestyle blog.
Lauren Roberts

Lauren loves all things Pittsburgh and all things food! When she's not checking out a new restaurant, you can find her in the kitchen trying a new recipe, working on her photography, or out on a bike ride exploring the city.

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