By Sally Deering
On 14th Street in Hoboken, you’ll find lots of hip restaurants and bars to hang out in and Liberty Bar & Grill Sports Bar between Washington and Hudson Streets is a standout especially when it comes to good food.
Walk into Liberty Bar & Grill and you know immediately you’ve landed in a sports bar with the 26 TVs lining the walls and hanging over the large circular bar in the middle of the room. There are cozy booths for couples and parties of four, and high-top tables and chairs for girls and guys who want to get together for some serious flirting.
Owner Dawn Kaplan opened Liberty Bar & Grill in 1998 and it wasn’t until she had some guests in from Pittsburg that Liberty discovered its identity as a Sports Bar, she says.
“I had some guys from Pittsburg that came to Hoboken and wanted to start a Steelers Club and they would come in and watch the Steelers,” Kaplan says. “That’s what prompted us to become a sports bar. So many Steelers fans came in; we just kept it as a sports bar.”
Sports and bars seem to go together and that’s why there’s a TV everywhere you look. The walls are also adorned with pictures of entertainment icons like Marilyn Monroe, The Beatles, and Hoboken’s favorite son, Frank Sinatra.
Liberty’s menu features a terrific offering of Appetizers, Sandwiches, Wraps, Salads, Burgers, Entrees, Pizza and a Brunch Menu that includes Breakfast Burritos, Omelets and Specials like Eggs Benedict, Pancakes and French Toast. Liberty’s drink menu offers fine wines and an extensive martini and frozen drink list.
On a recent visit, I tried the Chavo Wrap which is grilled chicken, avocado, bacon, Pico de Gallo, and ranch aioli. It was absolutely delicious and well-priced at $10.50. I also tried the 3 Cheese Mac & Cheese served with chips, which is a total bargain at $7. The mac & cheese was so creamy and cheesy and out of this world yummy. The chips were homemade – crunchy and flavorful.
There’s a great burger selection and the Power Burger which comes with an egg on top, is very popular, Kaplan says. Liberty gets its burger meat locally from the butcher Truglio’s around the corner. The salads are great, too, and Kaplan says the Chicken Avocado Salad keeps customers coming back for more.
“We have good healthy dishes,” Kaplan says. “We make everything homemade and to order. We have recipes that are staples that have been passed down through the years like the Cajun Wrap, the Chavo Wrap and the Executive Sandwich which is marinated hanger steak, provolone, onion and horseradish sauce.”
Liberty Bar & Grill Sports Bar seats about 70 inside and now that spring has arrived, guests can also sit outside on the patio. And during the week there are drink specials:
• Mon: $5 Martinis
• Tues: $10 pitchers of beer
• Wed: Corona and Sangria Specials
• Thurs: All night Happy Hour
During most sporting events, Liberty runs specials like $3 Pabst Blue Ribbon beers; $3 Southern Comfort drinks or shots; and $3 Domestic Drafts. The Specialty Drink Menu has some terrific offerings like the “Hot Mess” which is Southern Comfort, Cranberry Juice, Lime and Lemon; and the Dirty Snowball – Stoli Vanilla vodka, Hazelnut and Crème de Cacao served in a chocolate-rimmed glass.
One of the best deals in Hudson, Liberty Bar & Grill Sports Lounge offers parents a real treat. When a parent or guardian brings in their child (under 6 years-old) and orders an adult meal, the children eats free. There’s even a special menu for the youngsters.
“We have more of a laid back crowd because we’re located uptown,” Kaplan says, “and there are a lot of families and kids here. That’s who moves in up here and that’s who stays up here – a lot of kids and new moms. We want to get the families in here.”
On the weekends, Liberty Bar & Grill Sports Lounge serves brunch from 10 am to 4 pm which is a great way to spend a Saturday or Sunday afternoon.
“Just tell ‘em to come on down,” Kaplan says. “The outdoor patio’s open and there’s a beautiful view of the Empire State Building from our patio.”
If you go:
Liberty Bar & Grill, Sports Lounge
61 14th Street