Manero

A Soccer Sanctuary

By: Juan Mesa

If a soccer pub adds tasty food to the essential offering of multiple matches and booze, it should expect sanctuary treatment from its loyals.

It is the way it works for Woodwork, a soccer den in the heart of Prospect Heights. It all begins with its grounds, which resemble the cozy look of neighborhood pubs in Britain (in no small part due to the long oak bar), while art dedicated to the beautiful game decorates the brick walls.

The beer menu is as rich as the soccer programming, which ranges from the Champions League to Colombia's second division. The seasonal products from local breweries stand next to foreign brands, and there are deals like the Fuckit Bucket—6 cheap American beers (hello, PBRs!) for the price of 5.

The food menu is striking. Woodwork does not have an actual kitchen but chef/owner Ross Greenberg created a system to prepare savory grub right in the bar. The king of the carte is the mac and cheese, which can be filled with one of the three meat options or jalapeños. In the sandwich realm, the Portugal reigns supreme thanks to an invincible chorizo. And if the mood calls for snacks, the pickle bowl is a trustful as a veteran goalkeeper.

Tip for the complete experience? Get there by 7:00 a.m. on weekends to catch the European leagues, and live your weekend in several 90-minute cycles until midnight. It will be transcendental.

LOGISTICS: Woodwork, 583 Vanderbilt Avenue (corner of Dean Street), Brooklyn, 718-857-5777. Check match schedules here

Juan Mesa is a freelance writer based in New York City. He covers soccer and Latin music. When he's not writing, you can find him watching soccer games, talking about soccer or collecting soccer memorabilia. To relax, he plays house music vinyls.