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5 places to have a drink while Black Friday shopping
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5 places to have a drink while Black Friday shopping

Once upon a time, a writer who liked to eat and drink but didn’t like to shop would go out on Black Friday looking for some of those ever-elusive items and awesome deals.

That hungry and thirsty journalist would often get sidetracked. Wow, a happy hour is happening! Heck with that 75-inch Sony TV deal. Mmmmm that burger looks good!! So much for that PS5 I was going to wait in line for.

Needless to say, that Fat Boy wound up at more bars and restaurants than Wal-Marts and Best Buys.

So while we highly recommend you do your best on Black Friday to get a deal or two — but be careful in these pandemic times — we recommend you stop by one of these places to take a break. We broke them down geographically to major shopping areas … so the options are plentiful.

Happy bargain hunting!

Wingcraft Kitchen & Beer Bar — One of our favorite spots in Atlantic City happens to be conveniently located right in the middle of one of our favorite places to shop: Tanger Outlets, The Walk. While the 40-tap beer list will draw you in with current seasonal offerings such as Double Nickel Friends Giving and Troegs Mad Elf, the food will make you come back time and time again. Who can resist one of the best burgers in South Jersey, awesome wings and tails (get the honey hot), apps like sweet and spicy shrimp, maple bourbon corn fritters, Detroit-style pizza and one of the best chicken parm sandwiches you will ever have? Wingcraft is located at 2010 Baltic Ave., Atlantic City. Go to WingcraftAC.com.

Ruth’s Chris Steak House — If it’s more upscale you seek, Tanger Outlets also offers one of the best steakhouses in town. Sure, Ruth’s Chris might be a chain, but they operate like a local’s steakhouse and take great pride in their culinary program. So if you get a deal shopping at the outlets, why not spend a couple extra bucks on dinner? Cocktails like the Cuban Martini with pineapple-infused vodka and the Raspberry Rosemary Mojito with Absolut Raspberri Vodka will grab those in the fruity mood, while the Manhattan 43 with 1792 Small Batch and the Gambler’s Old Fashioned will set the tone. Then delve into awesome food including a beautiful crab stack, chilled seafood tower, a 22-ounce bone-in cowboy ribeye and more. Get there for happy hour 4 to 6:30 p.m. Black Friday and save some bucks! Ruth’s Chris is located at 2020 Atlantic Ave., Atlantic City. Go to RuthsChris.com.

Longhorn Steakhouse — If you are shopping in the Hamilton Mall area, Longhorn might not be as high end as Ruth’s Chris, but it’s an awesome option and has one of our favorite burgers you will find in any chain steakhouse. First start off with one of our favorite apps — the firecracker chicken wraps – and then grab that awesome half-pound steakhouse cheeseburger while washing it down with a beer or one of their five hand-crafted margaritas, two styles of mules, sangria and even Tito’s Texas Tea or the Longhorn Old Fashioned. Longhorn Steakhouse is located at 4417 Black Horse Pike, Mays Landing. Go to LonghornSteakhouse.com.

Chili’s — Right in the same Hamilton Mall parking lot, you will find one of our weak spots: Chili’s. Yes, we know it’s another chain. It’s been a while since we have been there, but if we were ever going to go, it would be during our Black Friday shopping trip. There is something irresistible about their classic chicken or beef nachos — maybe they remind us of the long-gone Chi-Chi’s because they are individually assembled — their light tortilla chips and salsa and their triple dipper: an appetizer with any three apps. We would pick the Big Mouth Bites sliders, Southwestern eggrolls and their original Chicken Crispers. The apps are so good, we never make it to the entrees, so that’s on you. The drink list includes a monthly $5 margarita available all day — this month’s is a Hennessy Harvest — the Deep Eddy Strawberry Texas Lemonade and Tito’s Punch. Chili’s is located at 4305 Black Horse Pike, Mays Landing. Go to Chilis.com.

Tilton Inn — If you want to avoid a chain while out for Black Friday, check out the Tilton Inn, which is just a stone’s throw from one of our favorite shopping spots: Boscov’s. Support a local business and get some good grub in a sports bar setting. Chef Juan is always rolling out some amazing specials, but the Tilton Inn is always reliable for some awesome chicken tenders, steamers, warm pub chips, gourmet burgers and their famous filet mignon sandwich on a Kaiser roll. There’s plenty of craft beers on tap, usually including locals Cape May and Tuckahoe brewers. If you’re looking for super fancy drinks here, this is not that kind of place, but their veteran bartenders can whip up just about everything. The Tilton Inn is located at 6823 Tilton Road, Egg Harbor Township. Find them on Facebook.

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