Few things satisfy like a juicy burger or heaping plate of steaming fries all washed down with a cold pint. The perfect bar food can be one of life’s greatest pleasures… that is, when it’s done right. While most bar food is famously disappointing, the best bar food in Connecticut not only steps up to the plate, but hits a home run.
– Courtney Delong
– Courtney Delong
The Half Door
270 Sisson Ave.Hartford, CT 06105
Grab that fork and knife and get ready to dig in on some serious pub food. The Half Door delivers tasty fare “Gastro” style. Mountains of shepherd’s pie, rolling hills of Reuben egg rolls, cobblestones of, well, “Cobblestones” (mini steak and cheese sandwiches with melted cheese, sautéed mushrooms and onions.) Nary a naysayer can be found when it comes to the gratifying grub at the Half Door. Whether you want a simple Caesar or an elaborate corned beef, there’s something for everyone. Of course, it helps that because it’s a “Gastro Pub,” the food is far above typical tavern caliber; it’s always of high quality and market fresh. Hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. Brunch is served Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Vaughn's Public House
59 Pratt St.Hartford, CT
Maybe it’s just the luck of the Irish, but Vaughn’s Public House is undoubtedly a winner when it comes to the best bar food in Hartford. Upon stepping in to this Irish oasis, you’ll feel as though you’ve been coming here your whole life. Friendly faces, warm smiles and flowing beer are everywhere. While the bona fide Irish accents add the perfect amount of authenticity, the true appeal of Vaughn’s Public House is the robust Irish food. Stop over for a quick lunch and enjoy a meatloaf sandwich, just like Mom used to make (or quite possibly better). Evenings are for throwing caution to the wind. Really do it up Irish style by diving in to a heaping plate of golden, flaky cod and chips or warm your belly with a steaming bowl of Guinness lamb stew. Follow, of course, every bite with a cold sip of one of the many thirst-quenching beers on tap. Hours of operation are Monday through Saturday, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 a.m., and Sunday for brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. A late-night menu is available.
1046 New Brittan Ave.West Hartford, CT 06110
The Corner Pug serves up more traditional English favorites than you can shake a stick at. Bubbling cauldrons of French onion soup, homemade kettle potato chips, Yankee pot roast – the list goes on. It’s obvious to see there is something for everyone at the Corner Pug; even a roasted vegetable plate for the non-carnivores out there. This quintessential English eatery is definitely the sort of spot you’ll want to set up camp. Curl up in an empty booth, partake in a heavenly meal, and spend the remainder of the eve nursing a tall pint. Lunch is served Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and dinner, Monday through Thursday, from 3 to 10 p.m. A late-night menu is available Wednesday and Thursday from 10 to 11 p.m., and on Friday and Saturday from 11 p.m. to midnight. Sunday Hours: brunch, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; dinner, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; late-night menu, 9 to 10 p.m.
Zula Bar and Restaurant
901 Main StreetHartford, CT 06103
Zula Bar & Restaurant is new to Hartford as of 2011. It honors classic cooking traditions, taking a unique interpretation on them. The place offers an extensive menu including smaller, mouth-watering appetizers and larger, delicious entrees. Some specialties include sliders, Yellow Fin tuna tacos, grilled beef hibachi and more. They also feature a bear and wine list and serve up the tasty, martini-bar type martini. Even better, located right off Arch Street on the corner of Pratt and Main downtown, it’s a sleek and stylish new place with “cool blues and trendy mood lighting.” Hours: Mon-Thurs 11am – 12:30am, Friday 11am – 1:30am, Saturday 12am – 1:30am, Sunday 2pm – 12:30am.