New Jersey Date Night is a series on NJ Flavor by relationship writer Craig Rogers.

Cheering on the home team is more fun when there’s two of you. And with football, basketball and hockey in full swing, there’s practically something happening every night.

It may not be possible for you and your date to go to every live game, but luckily our state offers a plethora of sports bars. Maybe it’s not stadium seating, but there’s something great to be said about being in the warm indoors and enjoying your game on the big screen while partaking of some of your favorite foods and beverages.

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Get ready for a New Jersey Date Night that might just go into overtime!

Where the Action Is

The Black Bear Bar & Grill in Hoboken is a recently updated sports bar featuring over 50 HDTVs and an impressive 25-foot HDTV wall above the bar.  You and your date will discover a true stadium atmosphere without inclement weather dampening your evening. 

When it comes to food, you’re sure to be impressed with their spicy lamb burger topped with spinach, red onions and tzatzki sauce as well as their fried chicken with creamed corn served with a spicy honey drizzle. Brunch is also served with fan favorites including The Belly Buster — two fried eggs and American cheese loaded with bacon, sausage and Taylor ham on a kaiser roll.  Be sure to check out their make-it-yourself Bloody Mary!

For more information on the Black Bear Bar, visit their website at

Steaks and Scores

If you and your date are looking for a super-friendly venue for game day where you can enjoy a steak and all the fixings, look no further than the Franklin Steak House.  Located in Fairfield, you’ll find over 30 HDTVs on the ready so you never miss a play. 

You’re sure to score with their extensive and tasty menu ranging from light bites like calamari served five different ways to salads, wraps and burgers. Their steak options are tempting, including the Franklin steak fingers (thinly sliced New York strip over toasted garlic crostini topped with garlic and white wine sauce) and the sizzling steak platter (grilled steak medallions seasoned with fresh herbs and Montreal steak seasoning served over a bed of onions, fried sliced potatoes and long hot peppers). Be sure to check out their impressive beer selection including many from local breweries.

For more information about Franklin Steak House, visit

The “In” Crowd Outside

It’s always warm and friendly at Green Knoll Grill in Bridgewater, for couples and singles alike. With 40-plus HDTVs, you and your date are sure to catch your game of choice and in warmer weather you’re sure to enjoy their large outdoor patio and tiki bar. 

Check out their half-pound burgers with creations including the Nitroburger (served with Nitro spicy sauce, cheddar, avocado and crispy smoked bacon) and The Big Bad Blue (served with blue cheese, crispy bacon, sautéed onions, baby arugula and Dijon mustard). For a true Jersey Burger, you’ll love the Jersey (served with Taylor ham, egg and cheese). On the lighter side, salads include GKG grilled chicken (grilled chicken, mixed field greens, mandarin oranges, walnuts and Granny Smith apples with raspberry vinaigrette) and the filet mignon salad (sliced filet mignon, mixed field greens, cucumber, peppers, tomato and shredded cheese with balsamic vinaigrette). 

For more information on the Green Knoll Grill, visit

The Passionate Fans

You’re guaranteed to find passionate sports fans Jack’s Goal Line Stand in Long Branch, but the passion really starts with the owners. As former employees of Jack’s Rib and Ale, current owners Nick and Tim took over this mainstay, converting it to one of the best sports bars in the country all the while staying true to the roots of the original. 

You’ll find fan favorites from the old days on the menu including ribs and wings, as well as a variety of handmade pizzas like pierogie pizza (potato- and cheese-filled pierogies, bacon, caramelized onions and mozzarella) and sandwiches and wraps like the Oaxacan Style Wrap (grilled flank steak, avocado, rice, pico de gallo and shredded lettuce, served with a side of grilled jalapeños and scallions). With 60 beers on tap, you and your date are sure to find the perfect one to accompany your meal choice.

For more information on Jack’s Goal Line Stand, visit

The Games People Play

One of the biggest complaints from people in the dating scene is that they meet others who play games. Some of the “athletes” in the dating word have trained well in overall dishonesty, specifically relating to their real relationship status. 

Of course it’s important not to fall for that particular play, but the real win is not allowing the disappointment and frustration about game players to leave you benched. Taking yourself out of the game because of one nasty player is not the right choice. Remembering that it was just one bad play with plenty of time on the clock is exactly what the coach wants you to do. 

Craig Rogers is the guy who gets relationships write. Author of The 49th Challenge, Craig has written countless articles on dating, relationships and breakup recovery. To learn more about Craig, visit

What’s your idea for a great New Jersey Date?  Tell Craig all about it at


More Date Night Ideas:

The Paranormal Date

Delightful Delis

Autumn Apple Picking

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