Players Sports Grill: Sports Bar with an Identity Crisis Reviewed by Greg
We returned to this place again Saturday June 19, after staying away for more than one year. Unfortunately, some bad memories resurfaced.
First the good news: ==================== Good beer choices, cold, and reasonably priced. Food is cheap ($6.75 for my Philly cheese-steak, and $2.75 for a pint of Bud). The restaurant environment is open, and attractive, with comfortable tables and seating. Our server Jamie, was professional and friendly. Without her good attitude, we would have left much earlier.
Now the bad news: ================ Why we stopped coming originally and still a problem: the blaring music, seemingly non-stop. OK, so they have a jukebox, and for one dollar I can play my 3 favorite hard-rock/metal/grunge tunes, at about 100 decibels. We know the bartender enjoys this, (she controls the volume, and apparently ignored our request to adjust the volume) but do the majority of the customers? We thought it was a SPORTS-BAR! We go to watch enjoy sports, eat, drink and talk. But we can't talk because everyone is yelling over this music. (Truth is, had "Bullpen" down the street stayed in business, we would never have given Players this second chance).
What exactly is "Players" anyway? ================================ Players doesn't seem to know what it wants to be. It has elements of several genres, but none are complete:
Is it a Sports-Bar? No. Hearing and enjoying the game is out of the question. And it doesn’t seem to be attracting many sports fans.
Is it like TGI Friday's? A happy hour/late night place? No. Friday's knows sets the music as background. They play prerecorded tracks at a reasonable level so customers can converse.
Is it a Dance-Club? We're getting close. The music volume is appropriate, but no dance floor.
Is it the Local Losers Dive Bar/Pool Hall? If they don't pick a business model, that's where they're headed. Just rip out those nice tables and fill it with pool tables. And a second jukebox. You’ll have an expensive version of “Hungry Stick” on Clairemont Mesa Blvd.
More specifics: The food was mediocre, and extremely slow to arrive, maybe 40 minutes, though there were very few customers. They served my friends hamburger open face, but with melted cheese only - no lettuce, tomato, or anything else. They forgot all that. It looked really strange as the manager set it down. Duh!
This place is huge, but not many customers. In the recent past it went through a long period of being shuttered. Perhaps it changed ownership during this time, I'm not sure. The location doesn't help. A strip mall in Kearny Mesa next to MacDonalds. In any case, unless the jukebox gets repo'd by some angry creditor, we won't be back.