Daily's Sports Grill
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688
I know I have been pretty lax on finding the best sports bars to watch football on Sunday mornings for you. This year has been another bummer for my beloved Jacksonville Jaguars. They have won only one game all year going into this late November tilt with the hated Tennessee Titans. It has been hard to get up and go watch the many fumbles and interceptions ruin a great Sunday off of work. We were at Katie's apartment, and of course they were not showing our game on TV at home, so we decided to make the mile trip over to a sports bar I have been to before, but haven't blogged about, Daily's Sports Grill.
Daily's is kind of an iconic sports bar in these parts. They opened their doors seven years before the city of Rancho Santa Margarita was even incorporated. To say that the bar scene in RSM is limited, would be an understatement. Sure some of the restaurants in this city have bars, but those are not bars that people go to hangout in. According to a quick search of bars in the city, besides a couple of wine bars, RSM has one other stand alone bar, (Tapas and Beer). I have not been to that bar, but when I lived in this inland city, I visited Daily's from time to time during my five year residency here.
Daily's is located well off of the main street of Santa Margarita Parkway, in the back of the same plaza that houses a KFC and the post office of this fine city. From the outside, this sports bar does not look so big, but once inside, it really is a pretty spacious place. The front area is dominated by a long bar and booths, the cavernous backroom has plenty of high top tables and some smaller booths. Of course a wide array of sports memorabilia is plastered to every wall you glance at.
We got to Daily's ten minutes before kickoff. We had no problem getting a table. It always seems that as the season moves along, the bars get a little more empty as teams drop off the playoff chase. There was a group of boisterous Steeler's fans near one of the TVs, but Daily's also caters to families as well. When we sat down we were surrounded by two families that had children ranging in age from seven to newborn. The waitress made sure that we sat at a table where we could see the game of our choosing, which was very nice of her. Now we just had to sit back, hope for the best with our team, and have some breakfast. This is how it came out for us.
Katie had the French Toast and Eggs ($6.95) for breakfast. Okay, not the most picturesque bacon and egg picture, but Katie felt these over hard eggs and bacon were pretty standard. What really woke up her taste buds was the French toast. Daily's french toast comes with sliced strawberries and bananas, then topped with a thin caramel sauce. Katie liked this different take on French toast, and felt that this version was a little less sweet than if she would have had this with maple syrup. She claims she would get this again.
I saw that they had this Montana Skillet ($7.95) on the menu, and it said it was made for someone with a lineman's appetite, so of course I had to get it. I love skillet breakfasts because you get all of the breakfast food rolled into one plate. This skillet came with two scrambled eggs, bell peppers, onions, and choice of breakfast meat, (I went with bacon), all topped with cheddar cheese. The menu said that this was going to have hash browns in it also, but the plate came out with baby red potatoes on the side. The potatoes were cooked fine, but I did miss the crunchiness of the hash browns. To be honest I thought this was going to be a little bigger. I had no problem polishing off this breakfast. The eggs were a little too diced up, and there was not enough bacon in this. The gravy served with this was very thin, so I used this sparingly. I did enjoy that the sourdough came with more than enough butter for the two slices that was served with this.
In case you have forgotten our criteria for judging places to watch football on Sundays, we base it on ambiance, service and food. Daily's definitely had the first two criteria met. Our server, Jules was very nice, kept great tabs on us, and really seemed to know almost everyone in this bar. Both Katie and I felt really comfortable here as well. Sometimes local bars can seem a little cliquey, but that was not the case at Daily's. Everyone was real nice, and even asked how we became Jaguar's fans. The area that Daily's needs to improve on if it wants to ascend to the ultimate football hangout spot, is its food. There was nothing too wrong with it, but it was nothing that made us clamor for more. The only thing the food really had going for it was that it was very reasonably priced. Looking through their menu, they only have one item that is above the ten dollar mark, and none above ten dollars for breakfast. They did have drink specials during football as well. I took advantage of their $4 Screwdriver special, which came in handy when Katie and I had to toast to the Jaguars second win of the season on this afternoon. Unfortunately this would be the Jags last win of the season, and they would finish 2-14, but there is always next year.
Out of five newspapers, (because a daily could also refer to that thing that you used to have delivered to your house to get the news of the day), five being best to zero being worst, Daily's Sports Grill gets 2.5 newspapers.
For more information on Daily's Sports Grill, check them out here: http://www.dailyssportsgrill.com/index.html