Bobby V's Sports Gallery Café
225 Main Street
Stamford, CT 06901
This sports bar and restaurant is unmistakably a Bobby Valentine production. The former Met manager's name adorns the awning outside the establishment, and his likeness is all over the inside. Two dining rooms and a centrally located bar make up the inside of Bobby V's.
Bobby V's seemingly has more memorabilia than the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Photos, autographs and jerseys decorate the walls. A photo of mustachioed Bobby V. sitting in the Shea Stadium dugout is conspicuously displayed, and a large banner photo of Timo Perez, Edgardo Alfonzo, Mike Piazza, Robin Ventura, Benny Agbayani and Jay Payton lining up for introductions before a 2000 playoff game hangs above the bar.
This is an in-your-face sports bar. Trivia nights, beer pong tournaments, karaoke, a Photo Hunt machine -- that's a 100% on the sports bar checklist. Van Halen plays on the speakers and the beer of choice for most patrons is one of the Bud-Miller-Coors light beer triumvirate. Newcastle is the most exotic beer on tap. The servers wear black-and-white striped referee jerseys and treat everyone like a regular.
The menu offers some amusement with a brief passage called "Baseball: As Explained to a Foreign Visitor". Here is an excerpt:
You have two sides - one out in the field and one in. Each man that's on the side that's in goes out and when he's out he comes in and the man goes in until he's out.
Simple as that!
The massive menu boasts 100 items. It's regular bar fare -- burgers, wraps, steak, etc. For an appetizer I chose the French Onion Soup ($4). The soup is serviceable. Bobby V's doesn't overdo it with the onions and the cheese is soft enough to separate with a just a spoon. This is the league average innings eater of French Onion Soup.
Bobby V. claims to have invented the wrap sandwich. It's a legendary and somewhat preposterous claim, so beforehand I settled on ordering a wrap for my main course, thinking it an unofficial house special. The Buffalo Wrap ($8) was my selection. It features chicken tenders dipped in a house hot sauce, with lettuce and tomato in a jalapeno wrap. As wraps go, it is slightly above average but maybe a tad disappointing given Bobby V's wrap invention claims. The jalapeno wrap added a nice kick. More hot sauce would improve the wrap but that's largely a personal preference.
Bobby V's is a popular spot for watching sports and gets crowded during big games. The food isn't spectacular but holds its own when considering the restaurant genre. The extensive menu ensures that there will be something for even the pickiest of eaters. Bobby V. has been known to tend bar at his place, so it is the best bet for anyone looking to have their Jagermeister shots poured by the leader of the 1999-2000 Mets.
Rating, on a scale from Alex Cora to Tom Seaver