10303 Folsom Blvd. Rancho
Cordova, CA 95670
Diamond Billiards is a great find in Rancho Cordova. Not only does it offer a great amount of billiards tables, but you can also play darts and shuffleboard. As with some other places in town specializing in billiards, Diamond is beer and wine only, but the selection is decent. Diamond Billiards has a well-updated Facebook page where it posts information on a regular basis. If you are in the market for a game of pool and happen to be in Rancho, check Diamond Billiards out.
9729 Fair Oaks Blvd.
Fair Oaks, CA 95628
Players is known as many things in town: local watering hole, sports bar and a great place for a game of billiards. Players has two locations but this location has 10 pool tables, one of which is tournament size. This full-service bar is the ultimate stop, offering everything from a full bar to dart leagues, video games and air hockey. This is a family-owned business that has been around for almost three decades. One thing that sets Players apart from others on this list is its late-night offerings. You can grab a bite to eat of the menu until 1 a.m. at Players. Check out the other location at 4060 Sunrise Blvd.
7777 Sunrise Blvd.
Citrus Heights, CA 95610
Corner Pocket is the place for billiards in Citrus Heights. It has a very full food menu including a breakfast well known by locals, and a full bar. It is also not a bad spot for darts or shuffleboard. Corner Pocket is the ultimate neighborhood bar for billiards which Citrus Heights natives take full advantage of. This place is spacious, the food is good and the staff is friendly, all great incentives for a visit.
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5536 Garfield Ave.
Sacramento, CA 95841
There are a ton of things about this place that make it great. Let’s start by saying Hard Times Billiards has some of the cleanest and best-kept equipment in town. The business absolutely focuses more on the billiards than the booze but that’s one of the appeals. Of course, you can grab a beer from the tap or bottle selection or even a Smirnoff Ice, but you won’t find hard alcohol here. In addition, you can order a burger, sandwich or dog (in addition to other selections) from the grill. If you are serious about the game, this is a place you must visit. Hard Times is home to many professional tournaments, many of which are draws for professional players often seen on ESPN. Another sign of a quality establishment is a happy employee and in speaking to Althea over the phone, it was clear she had nothing but love for her job and her employers. If you appreciate local family-run businesses, this one will be high on the list.
1004 28th St.
Sacramento, CA 95816
Up the stairs above Centro is Blue Cue. This spot is open late until 2 a.m. every night. Happy hour is offered from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday when patrons can enjoy $3.50 premium pints and $4 appetizers. On Tuesdays from 9 p.m. until close, “Roll the Dice” specials abound where you order your food and then roll the dice for your price (pay the amount on the dice). Menu offerings include nachos, burgers, wraps and more. Monday is industry night with $3 calls, wells, beers and apps.
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As a hospitality professional Andy Soto has worked every facet of the industry. He currently leads the team at Spectrum Restaurant Consulting. He started writing a hospitality blog in 2009 and restaurant writing for Sacramento Press in 2010. In 2011 Andy became a Sacramento Restaurant Examiner for Examiner.com. His work can be found on Examiner.com.