Best Pool Hall

Ignore the "Family" in the name. If you're seeking a friendly, comfortable environment to take the kids, try Hollywood Billiards or Kiss Shot Billiards in Jupiter. Gold Crown is an uninviting, dimly lit decades-old pool hall west of Young Circle that just happens to attract some of the meanest shooters ever to chalk up a pool cue. On any given night, you might find such pool luminaries as Danny Diliberto or Toby Sweet lounging at the bar, or picking up a game of one-pocket. Most nights the house man is John Foster, one of the top nine-ball players in the state of Florida. If you're looking for a money game, there's almost always one to be had. Just sidle up to the table nearest the cash register (the table recently fitted with a new felt cloth), and see who's looking for action. The 11 Gold Crown tables here are old and worn but still have smoother rails and more dependable pockets than most tables half their age. In other words the cliché holds true for pool tables: they don't make em like they used to. The omnipresent billiard dogs adorn the walls, as do black-and-white photos of pool greats such as Willie Mosconi, Minnesota Fats, and Abbott and Costello. From 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day you can play all you want for $5. Go early and hone your stick skills. Maybe then you'll be ready for the regulars.

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