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Game Day Cheers: Top Boulder Bars for CU Football & Buffaloes Fans

Updated: Oct 27, 2023

The University of Colorado Marching Band at Folsom Field in Boulder Colorado.

Introduction: Are you excited about attending a CU football game this year? As you're probably aware, CU football games have become some of the most popular sports events in 2023. Whether you're heading to the stadium or watching nearby, we've compiled a list of our favorite bars and pubs to celebrate the newfound success of the Colorado Buffaloes.

1. The Sink: Location, Location, Location! The Sink is a tough place to beat when you're looking for an iconic Boulder sports bar to visit before the CU football game. Approaching its 100th year in business, it's one of Boulder's most historic bars and restaurants, making it an excellent choice for fans to gather before or after the game. This establishment has witnessed Colorado's football highs and lows over the years and often serves as a meetup spot for visiting fan bases, such as the Nebraska Cornhuskers who frequented it before this year's match. Expect excellent food, a wide drink selection, and an ambiance steeped in 100 years of tradition (comic strips line the walls). Fun fact: even Barack Obama has a pizza named after him here!

2. The Dark Horse: The Dark Horse is another historic Boulder pub to catch any CU football game on the big screen. With projector screens in the bar, you're guaranteed an excellent view every time a memorable play happens. Established in 1975, The Dark Horse is not only an excellent viewing spot but also serves some delicious burgers and wings, making it an ideal spot to grab a bite before the game. The walls are adorned with eclectic knick-knacks and fun Boulder memorabilia, so even if you're not a die-hard football fan, there's plenty to keep you entertained.

3. West End Tavern: Rooftop Views and Gourmet Eats: The West End Tavern is another great spot to watch a CU football game, especially since they're currently offering game day touchdown specials. Every weekend day, and on CU football game days, the West End is serving up meaty specials like burnt ends or brisket, each accompanied by a free beer! What's even cooler is that the West End also partners with local food kitchens to reduce their own food waste, showcasing their commitment to both great food and the community.

4. The Attic Bar & Bistro: One of the go-to spots for many Boulder locals, this watering hole is a casual and affordable option to host a pre-game gathering with friends. With a couple of pool tables, foosball, darts, and video game options, you'll be sure to stay entertained during halftime. This is an immensely popular pub during CU football game day, so make sure to arrive early to secure a good seat. If you end up standing, don't worry, as there are several TVs dispersed throughout the bar to catch every thrilling moment of the game.

5. Avanti: While Avanti Food Hall was first introduced in Denver, it quickly found success on Pearl Street Mall in Boulder. This newly constructed space features six food vendors inside one spacious seating area and includes a coffee shop and a full rooftop bar with immaculate views of the iconic Flatirons. Being just doors away from the historic Boulder Theatre, Avanti sits in a prime location in the heart of Boulder. Avanti is no stranger to drink specials as they have $4 Avery Stampede Cans, $5 Pink Whitney Shots, and $10 Folsom Field Frozens every CU football game day. Like many of the bars mentioned here, they will adjust their hours if the Buffs have an abnormally early kickoff time.

6. Pearl Street Pub: The Pearl Street Pub is not to be overlooked. We love the cozy and friendly atmosphere where you're sure to find friendly people and an entertaining space. Located in a central part of Pearl Street Mall, you can sit on the patio and watch the mall goers or descend into the brick cellar of "The Pub." Either way, you're likely to enjoy the ambiance, and the burgers here are absolutely delicious! The CU football game will be on several TVs here, and the party will continue well into the night, whether the Buffaloes win or lose. The Pub and Cellar is a reliable late-night spot to have a good time.

After-Game Suggestions: After the game, if the Buffs win and you want to join the CU students in celebrating, make sure to visit Half Fast Subs on the Hill. They offer pitchers of boozy celebratory drinks on their patio. Another excellent option to satisfy your cravings would be to have a burrito from the iconic Illegal Pete's. They have locations on 13th Street on the Hill and on Pearl Street Mall.

Conclusion: Now that The Prime Effect seems to have taken full effect, you can approach Boulder game day like a pro by sharing these spots with friends, family, or fellow fans! Thank you for reading and exploring some of our favorite bars and pubs to watch Colorado Football. These spots are truly gems of Boulder culture, and we trust that you will not be disappointed upon visiting.

Author Bio: This article was written by Jackson, an avid University of Colorado fan who was born and raised locally. Jackson has expressed personal views on these businesses based on experiences, memories, and research. Thanks for reading!


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