Happy Hour reporter Tan Vinh wants you to go out into the weird spring weather and check out these new menus. Who is to deny him?
Just the other day, I jogged by Jimi Hendrix Park and heard a dad who was pushing a stroller, crooning “easy like Sunday morning.” It was wet and windy but sunny in his mind.
Get out there, people. It’s spring. Below are five new happy hours to check out. Inspired by him, I barhopped over the wet weekend. The Mambo Kings soundtrack was in the air. Sparkling wine went down easy, way too easy. The crowd was small. The vibe was relaxed. It felt easy like Sunday morning.
Geo Bar & Grill
Follow the brass horns of Cuban music blaring in the backroom. That lounge, painted Caribbean blue, has a horseshoe bar. Grab a seat. The menu has plenty of cheap bites, from rockfish croquettes to spicy garlic shrimp with yuca fries ($6-$7 during happy hour). But its regularly priced steak sandwich ($12) and Cuban pressed sandwich ($11) are substantial and just as good a deal. Specialty cocktails are $2 off ($8-$10) and well drinks and house wines are $5-$6. If you’re really cheap, there’s always Rainier ($2.50).
10515 Greenwood Ave. N., (Broadview), Seattle; happy hour Tuesdays-Fridays 4-6 p.m. and on weekends 2-6 p.m. and again every night from 10 p.m. to closing. (Closes at 11 p.m. on Tuesdays-Thursdays; midnight Fridays and Saturdays and 10 p.m. Sundays.); 206-457-5278, geosbarandgrill.com
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This 60-seat wine bar recently opened inside the Thackeray restaurant as part of a reboot. There’s baked Brie, grilled asparagus and beef tartare ($6-$15). Wines and beer cost between $5.50-$7.50. The vermouth-on-the-rocks menu ($5-$6) will come in handy when the weather warms up for its 25-seat patio. The wine bar is from the same investors behind the branches of Purple Café and Wine Bar in Seattle and on the Eastside.
3400 Stone Way N., (Wallingford) Seattle; happy hour weekdays 4-6 p.m.; 206-452-0511, claretseattle.com
This sports bar boasts the largest TV — a 165-inch LED screen — in the University District. I haven’t heard any innkeeper challenge that claim. With two dozen televisions, there isn’t a bad seat in the house to catch the NBA playoffs. It’s good for large parties. (It can seat 160.) Your usual bar snacks from pizza to Tex-Mex are offered. Cocktail favorites like margaritas and mules cost $6. Beer, well drinks and wine go for $4-$5.
4501 12th Ave. N.E., Seattle (located inside the Residence Inn Marriott); happy hour daily 3-6 p.m. and again 9-11 p.m. on Mondays-Thursdays, 9 p.m.-midnight on Fridays and Saturdays and 9- 10 p.m. on Sundays; 206-535-6055, tavern12seattle.com
In Bocca Al Lupo
Some $6 Neapolitan-style pizza (marinara, margherita or salame) and to drink, $6 aperitifs such as Americano or Contratto spritz. Or shell out a couple of bucks more for Old Fashioneds and boozier concoctions (Many around $8).
4303 Fremont Ave. N., (Fremont) Seattle; happy hour daily 4-6 p.m. and again 10 p.m. to closing (around 11 p.m. Sundays-Thursdays and around midnight Fridays and Saturdays); 206-547-2144, lupofremont.com
Breezy Town Pizza
Or how about some deep dish? Windy City Pie owner Dave Lichterman decided to screw conformity and got all weird with this sourdough pizza. Is it Detroit, Chicago or a hybrid? He loves that this is driving people mad because they can’t pinpoint which pizza style the crust adheres to. (It’s obviously Detroit as far as I’m concerned.) Slices and salads ($4-$7) are 20 percent off during happy hour.
4864 Beacon Ave. S., (Beacon Hill) Seattle (located inside Clock-Out Lounge); happy hour 4-6 p.m. weekdays; breezytownpizza.com