Not every week can be a full-blown tailgating extravaganza, especially when the Chargers are away or (gosh forbid) you don’t have tickets to this week’s game. A bonus about living in the San Diego area is that you’ll find a colossal amount of die-hard Chargers fans just like you all over the city. And many of them are bar and restaurant owners featuring celebratory football specials on any given game day. Enjoy this Monday night game at one of these San Diego football locales.

Football Cuisine With A Mexican Twist

What is living in San Diego without Mexican delicacies at your fingertips? Stop in at the High Dive Bar & Grill where you can always find delicious south-of-the-border fare including Big-Itos (football stadium-sized taquitos) and High Dive Nachos. For football Sundays, High Dive Bar & Grill offers its own version of tailgating. From 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., you and your football enthusiasts can enjoy $2 chipotle chicken tacos or beer-battered fish tacos. All beers served are from local breweries including Ballast Point Brewing Company, Coronado Brewing Company and Societe Brewing Co. On Mondays, Tiny’s Tavern hosts happy hour all day long! The bar’s Monday Night Football specials feature traditional nachos and super hot jalapeno poppers. Both High Dive and Tiny’s have televisions throughout the bars so you can be sure to see the game from every angle.

Wing It

As we all know and love, hot wings are a tailgating specialty. We dare you to try Nicky Rottens Bar & Burger Joint’s wings. Every Monday night from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m., Nicky’s has 50-cent wings. Pair them with the bar’s house favorites — sweet potato fries and sticky shrimp. Located in the Gaslamp Quarter, Nicky Rottens will be an easy target on your way home from work. If you are feeling slightly more adventurous in your ability to scarf down hot wings in a matter of seconds, then Bub’s at the Ballpark has your ticket to football partying. Bub’s wing contest will surely blow your socks off. Can you picture the red face with steam coming out of your ears? In addition, Bub’s offers slightly less spicy provisions for its Game Day Specials which include Saturday and Sunday drafts starting at $3.50 and pitchers starting at $13.50 and Monday $5 food specials. Be sure to try the sliders, tacos, quesadilla, The Woody Burger, Bub’s Chicken Parm Sand, Gaucho Steakums, Fish n’ Chips and Mac n’ Cheese.

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Sophisticated Palates

Sometimes a rip-roaring good time is not on your calendar and you might opt for a more sophisticated atmosphere like Basic. Cheering and whooping will still be the soundtrack on Chargers game days, but at Basic you will find specialty drinks and New Haven, Connecticut thin-crust brick-oven pizzas. Happy Hour is served Monday through Friday from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. with drink specials and Basic signature pizza samples. The bar’s Mason Jar Cocktails will definitely whet your whistle. Order the Basic Mule Classic which features Tree Ginger Beer, lime and Russian standard vodka. Although you may think your numbers need to be small and controlled, Basic is a great spot for the “mature” keggers. One of the only bars that offers kegs for you and your football buddies to enjoy, Basic will fill ‘er up with Widmer IPA, Blue Moon Stella Artois, Fat Tire or Ballast Point Yellowtail – just leave the Red Solo cup in the parking lot.
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Jennifer Geisman is a freelance writer and faithful beauty junkie living in Los Angeles. Her work can be found at

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