Credit: Belmont Park
Credit: Belmont Park

The Best Places to Watch March Madness in San Diego by Neighborhood

From Big Screens to Beer on Tap, You’ll Have Everything You Need to Watch This Annual NCAA Tournament Play Out

March Madness is almost here, along with the drama, the upsets and the buzzer-beaters that come with it! No matter where you are in San Diego County, there’s always a spot to watch this heated, single-elimination tournament. Lucky for you, we’ve put together a list of all the best bars and restaurants where you can catch all the action. From awesome neighborhood hangs in North County to exciting high-energy bars downtown, these are the best places to watch all the NCAA games your heart desires. Get your brackets ready, bring your appetite and plot out your path all the way to the Final Four. March Madness San Diego


🏆 Best in Mission Beach: Draft 

Credit: Belmont Park

Come for the brews and food, and stay to see the fourth quarter! Draft at Belmont Park features a 31-foot LED screen and more than 25 TVs around the bar, so you won’t miss a minute of the madness. You could spend all night updating your bracket here, where more than 70 beers are on draft to help you celebrate your wins (or wash away your losses). Bring your entire crew and snag a seat on the extended outdoor patio for ocean views and tasty American bites. Snack on shareables like truffle parmesan fries, buffalo wings, lobster mac and cheese and more! And for those who prefer spirits over cervezas, take a peek at Draft’s signature cocktail menu, which features sippers like their Margarita Picante, Belmont Mule and Sunset Sangria. A trip to this on-the-sand establishment is sure to hit the spot.

March Madness San Diego

🏆 Best in East Village: Bootlegger

March Madness fans beware: Bootlegger is Alabama territory. If the Crimson Tide is your team, you’re in good company here. Aside from an amazing craft beer selection, Bootlegger has a killer cocktail menu that the bartenders shake up on the regular. And not to worry—even if you’re not an Alabama fan, you’ll always be treated like family at Bootlegger… but maybe keep your team preference to yourself. 


🏆 Best in Carlsbad: Park 101

Credit: Huy Hoang

Up in coastal North County, Park 101 is the place to do double time, and by that we mean catch the games and get your grub on all at once. Park 101 features 8,000 square feet indoor and outdoor space and serves up an assortment of smoky bites, such as their Pulled Pork Sando and California Lobstah Roll. From Mad Deals to a Craft Beer Bracket, this Carlsbad hotspot does March Madness like no one else. 

March Madness San Diego

🏆 Best in Gaslamp Quarter: Barleymash 

Credit: barleymash

When it comes to the Gaslamp, everyone knows that Barleymash is the place to be. If you’re looking for an upbeat hangout, this downtown beer-and-bourbon destination will surely match your energy. Barleymash serves classic American fare like chicken tenders, lobster mac and cheese and the Surf and Turf Burger—plus a full list of drinks to help you wash it all down. 


🏆 Best in La Jolla: Nautilus Tavern

In the Windansea neck of the woods lies Nautilus Tavern—La Jolla’s only sports bar! All the locals know that nothing is better than enjoying a brew or two on the beach, and Nautilus kicks it up a notch with their flavorful bites like coconut shrimp and ceviche. Hangout and watch your team from the bar, all while enjoying their daily specials that are designed to please a true La Jolla local.

March Madness San Diego

🏆 Best in Encinitas: Union Kitchen & Tap

Credit: Zeke Kitchen @zekekitchen

Union Kitchen & Tap knows that when you’re coming in for a drink and a bite, you want a side of big-screen action too. At this Encinitas hangout, March Madness is an all-day affair—the restaurant also opens early on the weekends so that you can have brunch, social hour or dinner while catching the NCAA game(s) of the day. Union Kitchen & Tap has your back during the month of March.

EXP 4/16


🏆 Best in Del Mar: Monarch Ocean Pub

Monarch Ocean Pub
Credit: Camila Badaro

Monarch Ocean Pub embodies the California coastal vibes of Del Mar; with its post right on the coast, you’re guaranteed an ocean view. Catch a game (or 10) this March on their chic rooftop bar while enjoying daily $5 food and drink specials! From craft cocktails to fresh California fare with a twist, Monarch is the perfect spot to catch March Madness in Del Mar. 

March Madness San Diego

🏆 Best in North Park: Pretzels & Pints

Emulate the experience of sitting courtside with your food and drink at North Park’s Pretzels & Pints. Nothing says sporting events more than a delicious soft pretzel with a pint of beer, and luckily, this place has both. Serving up hand-rolled pretzels inspired by New York, Philly and Germany, Pretzels & Pints is a go-to when it comes to curing your carb (and beer) cravings. Plus, their TVs have all the necessary sports packages to scratch your NCAA itch.

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