Nick's Picks: TC Hooligans
I’m surrounded by about sixty HD televisions showing baseball, basketball, and UFC; Avicii, God rest his soul, is blasting through speakers; I’m avoiding eye contact with people I went to high school with; and a dozen shots of tequila are being poured. Someone takes a margherita pizza from a wood-fired oven and places at the bar in front of me. The surrounding commotion disappears as my attention narrows. Eight-hundred-degree heat from the oven causes a light char on the pizza’s edges and exaggerated bubbles of dough that ripple throughout. The crust is thin, airy, and topped with flavorful, fresh tomato sauce and mozzarella. It’s perfect and it’s from a sports bar.
Since 1999, well before the recent elevated bar food trend that sees bars prioritizing quality ingredients and restaurants favoring accessible food, TC Hooligan’s in Greece has been serving affordable barroom classics with rich flavor profiles.
The atmosphere at Hooligan’s is that of a typical sports bar and its menu reflects that, offering pizza, wings, sandwiches, wraps, finger foods, and some larger plates. Though the concepts are simple, fresh ingredients and high-quality, detail-oriented preparation make Hooligan’s food far better than a sports bar tends to serve.
After spending the past eighteen years gaining a massive following of regulars as a tenant of Greece Ridge Mall, Hooligan’s recently moved further down Greece’s Ridge Road to 200 Center Place Drive, where Famous Dave’s previously operated. Hooligan’s owners completely renovated the space, making it sleek, modern, and open. A wall of TVs separates the bar area—which does fantastic business with forty beers on tap, cocktails, and a hefty wine list—from the dining room, where patrons have the option of a quieter, more family-friendly dining experience. A spacious, comfortable patio is also available for outdoor dining.
With the move, Hooligan’s also added several new unique apps like Buffalo chicken egg rolls, macaroni and cheese wedges, fried cauliflower, and pizza arancini. Perhaps the biggest addition to the new location is a brand new, Forno Bravo wood-fired oven. Thought of by many in the restaurant industry as the premier pizza oven, Hooligan’s uses its Forno Bravo for simple classics like the margherita as well as unique pies like Country Sweet or spinach and artichoke.
A Bills game, a pay-per-view fight, or a simple night out with friends, use whatever excuse you need to get into the new and improved TC Hooligan’s.
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