They’ve built a reputation for good food at affordable prices, but the owners of Atlantic City Bar & Grill have also carved out a niche as a cool social hot spot.
“Saturday and Sunday nights, when it gets really busy down here, we’ll use that for an overflow,” says Gino Garofalo. “It’s got its own kitchen up there and a computer/cash register system that covers everything. Otherwise we’ll rent it out for things like retirement parties, graduation parties, going-away parties, things like that. On special occasions we’ll open it up as a sort of public party area, like on St. Patrick’s Day [March 17]. We’ll have live bagpipers up there and the whole place, upstairs and downstairs, will be packed. It’s going to be nuts.”
Between both levels and the main dining room, AC Bar & Grill has nearly 50 TVs on the premises including several large flat-screens in the bar. There are 12 beers on tap, some of which rotate seasonally, and there’s a “Two for 10” menu Monday through Friday during lunch hours that offers ample menu selections for just $5 apiece.
The walls of the place are adorned with all sorts of historic Atlantic City shots, particularly in the lower dining room where photos, reproduced with permission from the Atlantic City Free Public Library, depict such bygone attractions as the Steel Pier’s diving horse, Hackney’s Restaurant, the 500 Club, the Miss America Pageant throughout the years, and others. The bar area includes dozens of shots of celebrities who’ve stopped by — from comics like Dom DeLuise and Pat Cooper, to pseudo-celebs like Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton (who were there to shoot a scene for their comedy/reality show The Simple Life), to Philly sports legends and big-name boxing greats. In one shot, Ron Garofalo is standing beside the late former heavyweight champ Joe Frazier, and is wearing the Philly legend’s white fedora.
“I’m from Philly, so I was always a big fan of Joe Frazier,” says Ron Garofalo.
Atlantic City Bar & Grill
Where: S. Carolina and Pacific aves., A.C.
When: Open daily, 11am-late.
Dubbed “Hard Rock Rising,” the A.C. Hard Rock has 12 bands/solo artists competing on four Friday nights, 9pm-1am, starting Feb. 24. Ultimately the field is whittled to three finalists worldwide, with the grand prize being an all-expense paid trip to London for the 7th annual Hard Rock Calling music festival July 13-15. The winning band/artist will be on the bill with this year’s headliner — Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band.
"It was a little bit of a culture shock coming from Las Vegas, as you can imagine. But then when I actually spent some time [in Atlantic City] and spent some time in competitors' casinos, I was pleasantly surprised and I feel that, you know, being involved in Revel is a very exciting piece of history for Atlantic City and I think will change how people look and perceive the market."
'It’s one of several themed events we have planned throughout the hotel and throughout the year, and it’s going to be a lot of fun. Seven Stone just did such a phenomenal job when they were here last [on Jan. 21 for the LIVE Bar re-branding party] that we had to bring them back.”'
It’s that time of the year again. The votes have been counted and the winners have been named for the 4th annual ACWeekly.com Readers’ Choice Nightlife Awards.
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