Monday, October 21, 2019

Punch Bowl Social - Still a Crowd-Pleaser

Do you like having people over? I love gathering my friends to share a meal at my space, but I hate how stressful it can be to prepare to have a group of people over to my place. Cooking, cleaning, and planning everything can take the fun out of any gathering, so I've started looking for different places to assemble a group of friends when I have the chance. When I'm searching for a spot, I don't want it to be too loud, too crowded, or too expensive, but I also want to make sure that everyone can eat good food and have a good time. It might seem like I'm asking for a lot, but there are a few places that care as much about the visitor's experience as they do about the food and the service. Punch Bowl Social is one of those restaurants.

Punch Bowl Social is the perfect place to gather a group. Their entire restaurant is built to make you believe that you are inside a super hip extra comfy living room. There are large chandeliers, fire burning mantles, and long couches that you can sink into as well as gaming areas that you can rent out for the night. They offer bowling, private karaoke rooms, giant scrabble, table shuffleboard, and tons of vintage arcade games. They even have a wall of board games that you can take to your table and play. They are not the first restaurant to bring gaming to the dinner table, but they are the only place to do it while also serving up good food from a real scratch kitchen.
The food at Punch Bowl is as good as the layout and the experience because they have a chef that is constantly coming up with new menu items that will have you coming back for more. The last time we visited we couldn't stop thinking about the cauliflower nachos and this time it was the Sriracha fries. It's fun to order a bunch of different stuff and have it slowly roll out while you hang out and play a game. Everything is shareable and if you let them know that you want to share it, they will make sure that it easy to pass around. The kitchen was willing and able to cater to any diet, they didn't flinch when I told them I was a vegan and were happy to go out of their way to make substitutions when the group needed them. There was something for everyone and everything we ordered was great.
This wasn't our first time visiting Punch Bowl and it won't be our last. We usually rent a few lanes and bowl if we have a big group of friends and a karaoke room if its a smaller gathering. A lot of the spaces book up in advance so it's best to plan things out and call in a reservation if you can. I also insist that you try the Sriracha fries because they are addicting. But, the biggest pro tip that I can give you is to spring for a punch bowl if your group is willing to split it. It seems like a silly thing to do, but there is something special about sharing a strong bowl of punch with your friends. Everyone loosens up, laughs, and enjoys something together. It's hard to create intimate experiences in public places, but Punch Bowl has all the things you need to make it happen. We never expected to like a place like this as much as we do, but every time we go back we leave with a smile on our faces and that says a lot.


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