food & drink

Belly Up

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March 17th, 2011 |
By Jared Curtis


The Game Sports Bar


Urbandale’s best kept secret


Originally opening in 2006 as the first smoke-free sports bar, The Game offered patrons a place to catch their favorite team without catching emphysema. But after the smoking ban was put into place, The Game lost one of its main draws. That didn’t stop owner Jeff Fogelson from forging ahead.

“We kind of had to reinvent ourselves after the smoking ban,” Fogelson said. “But we’re still the same great bar offering a fun and friendly place where you can grab a bite, a drink or catch the game.”

The Game offers a wide variety of menu items (homemade pizza, burgers, sandwiches, appetizers, Nathan’s hot dogs) including a $5 rotating lunch special (sandwich, side and drink) throughout the week. On Monday and Thursday, stop in for Steak Night (steak, potato, bread and salad for $7) from 5 to 9 p.m. On Friday, enjoy $1 pizza slices from 7 p.m. to midnight.

“My whole concept behind the kitchen was to mirror ballpark food, so we always run hot dogs and brat specials during the games,” Fogelson said.

Happy Hour takes place from 4 to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. Patrons can enjoy $2 domestic bottles and draws, $2 wells and $1 off everything else. The Game also hosts a number of nightly specials running from 7 p.m. until close. On Monday, stop in for “Well Night” and receive $2 well drinks. Double your pleasure with “2 For Tuesday” and receive two-for-one drinks. Enjoy $2 draw beer during “Pint Night” on Wednesday and $1.50 beer and wine during “Craptastic Thursday.” Start your weekend off right with “Free Beer Fridays” from 5 to 7 p.m. (or until the free keg runs out). Stop in for “Shot Night” on Saturday with $2 shot specials and $2 “Bottle Night” on Sunday.

“ ‘Free Beer Friday’ is a big hit and brings in quite a few people,” Fogelson said.

The Game has 20 TVs (ranging in size) spread throughout the bar’s massive layout. The bar offers sports fans the MLB package as well as the NFL Sunday Ticket.

“We tend to get more Hawk fans than Cyclone fans and more Packers fans that any other NFL team, but anybody is welcome to stop in and root for their team,” Fogelson said.

Along with the numerous games (shuffleboard, pool, darts and videogames) patrons should also try the house shot, “Tart Fuel.”

“I originally made it up for Halloween because it’s an orange, tropical shot,” he said. “But people liked it so much, we serve it all year now.”

The Game will host its second annual “Beach Party” on Friday, April 15. The bar will offer margarita specials, a cookout, live music and a costume contest.

“We had a great crowd last year,” Fogelson said. “People really like it because it gets them ready for warmer weather.”

Although there are a number of sports bars throughout the metro, The Game should be a destination for diehard fans.

“We’re a laid back and friendly neighborhood sports bar with a ‘Cheers’-type atmosphere,” Fogelson said. “We’re a great place to watch a game because there isn’t a bad seat in the house.” CV

caption: Bartender Brady Mishler pours shots of Rumplemintz at The Game Sports Bar, 3719 86th St., Urbandale. Hours are 11 to 2 a.m., daily.