Friday, December 7, 2012 at 8:49 a.m.
In a city at risk of sports bar fatigue, the new Sports Page Bar and Grill in West Palm Beach is serving up something new and different unlike any bar in the area.
No, it's not the 47 high-definition TVs (some of which are mini-screens dedicated to a single booth or high-top table) scattered throughout the 5,000 square foot space, nor is it the menu highlighting the best of authentic New England fare.
What makes Sports Page different -- and a little cooler -- than other area establishments is the 40-foot strip of snow-like frost that runs the length of the bar where you can rest your glass assured you'll always have an ice-cold beverage.
How? It's all thanks to the bar's cutting-edge Chill-Rite draft system, with ice taps designed to pour your pint at a perfect 32-degrees, as well as the custom dry-frost "rail" running the length of the bar -- all of it guaranteed to deliver the coldest beer in town.
"This is the same system they use at some of the best sports bars in the country," co-owner Rich Bonzani told Clean Plate Charlie during a recent interview. "I took some ideas from here and there, all my favorite bars and restaurants along the East Coast. My travels have brought me to a lot of cool places, and a lot of cool bars."
Bonzani, a New England native, opened Sports Page in November with his long-time friend, Brian Lamb. Both men hail from upstate Connecticut, but recently relocated to South Florida for work where they decided to fulfill their lifelong dream of opening a bar and restaurant together. The partners said they chose the Northwood district of West Palm Beach for its unique location several specialty restaurants call home.
"We look at this as an up-and-coming area, and we wanted to be a part of that future," said Bonzani.
Part of what makes Sports Page different than other area sports bars is the customized touch Bonzani and Lamb gave their establishment, all inspiration from the traveling Bonzani does for the day job he still holds. Like the bar, the menu is also a compilation of some of his favorite eats from across the Northeast, specifically Pittsburg-based dishes like the restaurant's hot subs, including an authentic cheese steak ($8.99) and the house Italian sausage sub ($9.95).
The menu begins with the "First Quarter," a long list of appetizers that range from Italian-themed eats like triangle-shaped mozzarella sticks, fried calamari and fried ravioli, to standard sports bar picks like nachos, quesadillas, loaded potato skins and wings ($6.99 to $9.95). A top pick, said Bonzani: the fried pickles, thin circular slices fried to perfection with a house breading.
If you make it into the "First Quarter" or "Half Time," choose from soups and salads, or one of the house specialties like lasagna, chicken parmesan and baked penne pasta ($4.99 to $10.99). You can also "build your own" hotdog and burger with plenty of free add-ons -- even Cheese Whiz.
"We also serve some of the best New England clam chowder around," added Bonzani, of his personal recipe made in-house. "Being from the Northeast, I'm fussy about how its made. This is the best you'll find around here."
The Sports Page, which recently celebrated its official grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday, November 30 during the monthly Northwood District Art and Wine Promenade, is open daily from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. For more information visit the Sports Page Bar and Grill Facebook page, or call 561-832-4211.