There's a little something for every taste in Boston's West End neighborhood, including on Canal Street, a popular pre-game destination near the TD Garden. Whether you're seeking a quick bite before a Bruins or Celtics game, a drink after a concert, or are just looking to dance the night away, here are some of the best bars near the Garden.
Boston Beer Works
Like its sister location across from Fenway Park, this hometown brewery is a pre-game favorite for Bruins and Celtics crowds. The Bunker Hill Blueberry Ale (including real blueberries) is a popular favorite, but the newer DIPA and espresso stout are sure to become hot sellers as well. Much larger than the Fenway location, the second floor features an assortment of pool tables.
If you're looking for a sports bar with some history, this is the place. Voted Best Sports Bar in America by Sports Illustrated, memorabilia adorns the walls everywhere at this establishment, almost as if the place were a mini-museum of Boston sports history. The extensive menu boasts sandwiches and burgers named after Boston sports legends, including John Hannah, Bobby Orr, Ray Bourque and Ted Williams.
Don't have a ticket to the game? This spot is game-watching nirvana, with dozens of TVs hanging from the walls and ceiling. The food is decent, and the beer selection is about average. But ask Bostonians what the best bar in town is for watching sports, you're liable to hear "Sports Grille" more often than not.
In a neighborhood teeming with loud, obnoxious venues, the welcoming, upscale atmosphere at Porter's presents itself as a top-notch destination for the after-work and pre-game crowd. Porter's has been named Boston's Best Burger by both Citysearch and the Improper Bostonian, and received accolades from WBZ-TV, who named it Boston's Best Sports Bar in 2007.
Hands down, one of the best Irish bars in the city. The small, cozy atmosphere at McGann's gives off a warm vibe, one best paired with a perfectly-poured pint of Guinness. There's little Irish about the menu, which features your typical American pub fare. But the scene will make you feel as if you stepped into Ireland for a brief spell.
The windowless Sullivan's Tap has long been treasured as one of Boston's best dive bars. From the sticky floors to the ridiculous beer specials, this place is not for those seeking out the town's best martini. This is much more of a dive bar than a classy establishment, but it's an experience that you can't help but frequent it every now and then.
The Greatest Bar on Friend Street has four levels of sports and Boston-themed spaces and has been a popular spot for pre- and post-game crowds, with different experiences on each of the four floors. They boast that the 14-foot HDTV is one of the largest in Boston and that their chicken fingers are the very best around. On weekend nights this spot tends to become a big dance party!
One of eight local bars in the Glynn Hospitality Group, Hurricanes at the Garden (formerly Hurricane O'Reilly's) has a generic sort of presence to it, despite its attempt to bill itself as an all-the-time Mardi Gras party destination. It does have the party part down, as lines form outside on weekends with patrons willing to shell out the hefty $10 cover charge for admission. It's a nice landing spot for the young, dancing crowd. Everybody else will probably find it all a bit loud.
A long-time destination for the college crowd, the best thing going for The Harp is that it's located directly across the street from the Garden, which makes it an ideal meeting spot before the game. The overpriced menu and drinks, however, make it a much less ideal dining spot.
City Winery Boston
City Winery, which opened in 2017, is where you'll want to go if you're looking for an extensive wine list. This spot is not only a wine bar, but also a winery, restaurant and 300-seat music venue. They have over 400 different wines, 20 of which they make in-house, along with a Mediterranean-inspired tasting menu.