Fresh Bistro

Posted in West Seattle on November 2, 2012 by happyseattle

It was a dark and stormy Halloween. Before I went home to eat candy, watch some ridiculously un-scary 80’s horror movies, and wait for the 3 trick-or-treaters (ok, this year it was only one) who might arrive, I thought I’d treat myself to some good old-fashioned happy hour.

Neighborhood/s: West Seattle

Food: Fresh Bistro offers a fairly wide variety of HH food. Most of the items cost around $9 or $10, which is a little pricy for happy hour, BUT for just $3 you can get one of the best sliders this snacker has ever enjoyed: the Pork Belly Bahn Mi Slider. It is like someone put heaven between two tiny little buns. I also tried the Mussels and Truffled Frites, which were not only delicious, but hefty in portion size, which more than makes up for the $10 price tag.

Drinks:  $3 wells, $3 draft beers, $6 select wines, and $6 margaritas. Naturally I had to try their margarita, which was absolutely PERFECT! Not too sweet and sugary with just enough booze to make me feel extra Halloweeny.

Atmosphere: The decor is modern but inviting. They were playing some golden oldies music station that  made happy hour even happier. It was just lovely sitting in such a cozy environment while the grey weather blustered outside.

Service: Great! Very attentive and friendly.

The Happiest Hours: Mon-Thurs: ALL NIGHT!! (how is it possible that I didn’t know this before??) Friday: 5-7 and 9-10, Sat: 9-10.

Website: http://www.freshbistroseattle.com/. The happy hour menu posted online does not list the drink discounts, but only because they forgot to take a photo of the back side of their HH menu. 🙂 See drink prices above.

I highly recommend the Fresh Bistro happy hour. It is the perfect way to get truly gourmet food at reasonable prices. This place gets the full five olives–I had a super Spooktacular Halloween happy hour!

 

 

El Chupacabra

Posted in Phinney, West Seattle on October 17, 2012 by happyseattle

To this day I have trouble saying the name “El Chupacabra.” It’s also difficult to type, so I’m just going to refer to this place as “El Chup.” With the phonetics out of the way, I have to say the West Seattle El Chup happy hour was one of the saddest hours of drinking I’ve experienced.

Neighborhood/s: West Seattle (where El Chup was reviewed), Phinney Ridge

Food: So……El Chup does not offer happy hour food. That’s right–nothing. My handsome companion and I decided to split some $8 nachos anyway. While the addition of  fresh avocado was lovely, the nachos were pretty ho hum. Luckily, the table was furnished with an array of hot sauces, so I was able to douse my chips with Cholula and all was well.

Drinks:  $1 off wells and draft beers. Another El Chup let down. No hh margaritas?!? Not even a cheap glass of wine? Come on, guys throw me a freakin’ drink here! I ended up going with Elysian’s Night Owl Pumpkin Ale, which was fabulous, but those props go to Elysian, not El Chup.

Atmosphere: Picture this: a trendy tex mex restaurant/bar on Alki Beach, which offers arguably the best view in all of Seattle. You’d think the hh time slot on a Friday evening would be pretty popular. Alas, my dashing date and I were one of only 2 or 3 couples in the entire place. PERHAPS if El Chup put a little effort into their hh menu they might attract a few more locals and even make some extra cash. Novel idea.

Service: Our server was nice and attentive. I noticed that despite the fact that there were so few people in the restaurant there were 4 servers standing around waiting for patrons. Again, if you pour it (and take off a buck or two) they will come.

The Happiest (sort of) Hours: 4pm to 6pm and 10pm to Midnight

Website: El Chupacabra does not have a website. I think it is pretty ridiculous to run a business in the year 2012 without a website. They do offer a Facebook and a MySpace (does that seriously still exist??) page with limited information.

While the W. Seattle El Chup has the potential to be amazing, I think their real downfall is being a little too cool for school. They could stand to cater towards the customer a bit more: a better happy hour with discounted food and drinks. Also a jump into the 21st Century with an actual website would be a good thing.

Talarico’s

Posted in West Seattle on September 25, 2012 by happyseattle

This is the place to go to get a slice of pizza that is bigger than your head, bigger than a football, bigger than some of the skirts worn by their servers….you get the point. The pizza is big.

Neighborhood/s: West Seattle

Food: Perhaps you’ve heard about the pizza slices–they are large. And at Talarico’s happy hour you can get a 14″ slice (I told you!) for $4.00. It’s essentially like getting 3 slices of pizza for $4, which is pretty freaking awesome as long as you have not eaten for many hours and don’t plan on eating again. The slices are not just sizable, but also pretty darn tasty. My favorite is The Sinatra; it’s spicy enough to make you swoon, just like old Blue Eyes himself. There are also other HH snacks to suit your fancy. The Three Cheese Artichoke dip for $6.00 is creamy and cheesy and everything nice.

Drinks:  Draft beer  is $3.50, well drinks are $4.50, and house wine is $5.00. Not bad at all.

Atmosphere: In the past I’ve been to Talarico’s in the later, not-so-happy hours and the place is usually pretty lively. It just so happens the day I went in to review the happy hour the atmosphere was a little more deflated than usual. Perhaps it was just the earlier time frame, but the music selection was depressing (soft rock/country) and there was a very strong stench of bleach and burning wafting through the restaurant/bar.  It wasn’t the most glamorous of scenes, but all that went unnoticed once I had consumed most of my colossal sized pizza slice.

Service: Good. As previously mentioned some of the female servers are scantily clad. That could be a good thing or not–you decide.

The Happiest Hours: 3-6pm and 11pm-1am EVERY DAY.

Website: http://talaricospizza.com/

I’m giving Talarico’s a rating of 4 olives. I am only docking them one olive because of the sad energy that was happening when I went in for happy hour. Technically the slices should compensate for any shortcomings (did I mention they’re huge?), but I will be true to my criteria.

Toulouse Petit

Posted in Queen Anne on September 4, 2012 by happyseattle

Toulouse Petit was selected by CNBC’s recent nationwide survey as one of the ten best Happy Hours in the nation in 2010. Well, with a reputation like that I just had to see what everyone was fussing about.

Neighborhood/s: Queen Anne

Food: There are about a gazillion mouth-watering options on this HH menu. I was nervous that being in a fancy Queen Anne bar meant that I would receive tiny portions on giant plates with sauces swirled all about them. However, when I ordered the Barbecued Shrimp New Orleans for $6, I was pleasantly surprised. The shrimp was delicious and it came with a side of creamy grits that were amazing. I also had the mushroom bruschetta (only one piece of bread, but decently sized–probably doesn’t need to cost $6) and the pommes frites with aoli (I think we got the fries from the bottom of the bucket because they were all sad and broken). I definitely didn’t need the fries, but I was 3 drinks in and was getting the semi-drunk munchies.

Drinks: My only bone to pick with Toulouse Petit is that $7.50 is not at all an appropriate happy hour drink price. I mean, come on–unless the booze is made from the tears of a unicorn or has microscopic diamonds floating in it, there’s no need to charge that much. My first drink, called Silver Lining, was all sugar and no alcohol. However, my second choice (recommended by a fab friend) was the Katie-Mae and it was deliciously potent. Just the way I like it.

Atmosphere: Good. One must get there at the early side of happy hour as the place fills up very quickly with very pretty people.

Service: Slow at times, but very friendly.

The Happiest Hours: 4-6pm and 10pm to 1am

Website: http://toulousepetit.com/

Toulouse Petit gets 4 olives–if their drinks were slightly more reasonably priced (like $5 would be fine) I would give them the full five.

A Terrible Beauty Irish Pub

Posted in West Seattle on August 3, 2012 by happyseattle

Cool name, good location (for this post we will be strictly referring to the West Seattle location, but it’s good to note that there is also a pub in Renton), some kitschy uniforms and one of the greatest gifts to the manly man: poutine.

Neighborhood/s: West Seattle (and also Renton).

Food: The happy hour menu at A Terrible Beauty is not extensive, but the portions and price are just right for soaking up the beer. The $5 humus platter, while not very Irish, is quite good. And for the same price you can get one of the most glorious inventions of the 20th Century (also not Irish)–POUTINE. For those of you who aren’t familiar with this awesome artery clogger, poutine is a dish made up of french fries (good!) topped with gravy (good!!) and cheese (good!!!). It’s amazing.

Drinks: HH beer is $1 off with a pretty hefty selection and wine is $2 off. Our server said that well drinks were also $1 off, but the hostess had a contrary opinion stating that well drinks are not discounted. Hmmm.

Atmosphere: I wouldn’t recommend A Terrible Beauty’s happy hour for a first date or something more intimate. The pub regularly features live musicians playing various versions of Irish music. It’s fun and lively, but also loud. If  you want to have a deep, meaningful conversation–maybe go someplace else.

Service: Here’s where A Terribly Beauty falls a little short. This wasn’t my first trip to the pub and while I love the food and drink, the service is spotty and questionable. On this occasion our server seemed extremely apathetic and unenthused. Also, you have to ask for water –and sometimes you have to ask for it multiple times. I get it, they’d rather you be drinking beer than boring old water–but sometimes a girl gots to get some hydration going–and having to ask 3 times is always a drag.

The Happiest Hours: 3-6pm M_F

Website: The website lists the happy hour food down way down in the bottom corner and it fails to mention anything about the drink discounts: http://www.aterriblebeauty.com/index.html.

If A Terrible Beauty stepped up their service a bit (maybe a smile here and there?) and put a tad more info on their website they would get a better olive rating. But nonetheless, they’ve made a fan out of this lassie (Sorry, I had to)–so they get three olives.

Local 360

Posted in Belltown on July 25, 2012 by happyseattle

An oasis in a sea of single 20 somethings prowling the streets of Seattle looking for their next hookup, Local 360 is a diamond in the rough.

Neighborhood/s: Belltown

Food: Three words: PB&J Bon Bons. Yes, it’s true.  The Local 360 HH menu includes deep-fried peanut butter balls (hee hee) that are served atop a small pool of jam with a shot of milk on the side. For $4 you can’t miss out on this grown up’s dream come true. There’s also a delicious corn dog made with kielbasa for $4 and a few more substantial items for $5-$7. It really is alllll good.

Drinks: While I’ve yet to try the $8 HH cocktails at Local 360 (shame on me, I know!), I do enjoy that draft beers are $4 and house wines are $5. A smidge pricier than some happy hours, but by Belltown standards a rare find.

Atmosphere: This place is really cozy and fun (my group sang loudly along with the music station) and has none of the meat-market feel of Belltown.

Service: Great.

The Happiest Hours: 3-6pm & 10pm until “late.”

Website: http://www.local360.org/

Local 360 gets all 5 olives for meeting all of my HH needs (plus brownie points for the PB&J Bon Bons–I mean, seriously–you have to try them!).

Endolyne Joe’s

Posted in West Seattle on July 23, 2012 by happyseattle

Take a trip “way” over the bridge (I type “way” with sarcasm because I live in West Seattle and don’t believe it to be so far from central Seattle) to Endolyne Joe’s for a laid back, chillax kind of Happy Hour complete with quirky artwork and a solid playlist.

Neighborhood/s: Fauntleroy neighborhood of West Seattle (a neighborhood within a neighborhood) near the Fauntleroy ferry dock.

Food: The happy hour food is just what you need after a long day. Try the Chicken Quesadilla from the $5 category or the gigantic Onion Rings for $4. Both are tres yummy and quite filling. There are many other cheap and delectable food options.

Drinks: At the EJ’s (don’t know if they like being called that, but whateves) happy hour one can get draft beer, house wine (which is usually a pretty decent wine–No Carlo Rossi here), or a well drink for $3. That means you and your mate can each get 2 drinks and one snack apiece for around $20!!

It doesn’t get much better than that. Oh wait, it does because on Tuesdays EJ’s offers HH from 3pm to close. That is radical for us commuters who don’t get home from work until 6pm when most HH’s are over and done.

Atmosphere: As previously mentioned there is good music playing and some interesting art on display. Kind of reminds me of something you’d find in Portland or Bellingham–minus the hipsters.

Service: Pretty good. I had one guy who was a bit clueless, but I’ll give him a pass. Maybe it was his first day.

The Happiest Hours: 3-6pm & 9pm-close / Tuesday 3pm-close

Website: http://www.chowfoods.com/endolyne-joes

I’m giving EJ’s (they should run with this nickname if they don’t already) 5 olives since they meet all of the HappySeattle criteria.

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