By Ryan Glasspiegel
TheDailyMeal.com

For big sports fans, nothing can truly compare to being at the game. That said, when a sports bar gets it right, it can come as close as possible to replicating the experience -- ideally with the added bonus of a more convenient location, less traffic, and cheaper and better food and drinks.

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Slideshow: America's Best Sports Bars

There are any number of criteria on which to evaluate sports bars and compare them against each other. In no particular order, these characteristics are as follows: Quality and quantity of TVs, food, drinks, value, location, friendliness of the staff, décor (which for sports bars means unique, nostalgia-inducing memorabilia as opposed to sleek interior design), and clientele. Does the bar cater to certain team fan bases or to specific sports? Could a deep-pocketed investor open a competitor nearby and do a better job catering to fans?

These tenets meld together to create an unquantifiable but readily noticeable factor which, above all else, determines the worthiness of a sports bar: Atmosphere.

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At the best sports bars, you can go to grab a delicious meal, have a couple of drinks, and catch a game by yourself, leaving a few hours later with a group of new, like-minded friends. Especially if your favorite team wins.




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Click here for TheDailyMeal.com's complete slideshow of America's Best Sports Bars.