You don’t have to work in a cubicle every day to enjoy happy hour. For many, it signifies the beginning of a fun evening, filled with cocktails, food, and live music. Let’s start with the obvious upsides to drinking during happy hour. It’s right after work. After a long day at the office anyone would be itching for a drink, especially in this town, and that’s if you haven’t had one at lunch already. The other clear advantage to happy hour is the price. Most bars severely cut the price of food and drink during happy hour, making it insanely cost effective to load up on both. Some of the happy hour spots on this list are slightly off the radar. Others are famous local spots specifically for the ridiculous deals they offer. But they all have fantastic food, superb drinks, and are an amazing way to jumpstart the evening.
This John Besh-owned restaurant is headed up by James Beard Award-winning Chef Alon Shaya who specializes in light, rustic Italian fare. Every day Domenica runs the wildly affordable happy hour, which goes from 2-5pm and features half price pizza, wines by the glass, well cocktails and beer.
Also owned by John Besh, Luke is an old school take on the New Orleans style French restaurant. The service is great, and locals from all over routinely come here for a midafternoon ‘dozen raw’. Monday through Friday between 3-6pm raw oysters are 50c each and beer, wine and specialty cocktails are half-off.
At Empire Bar they run a summer happy hour that might be the best deal in the city. Every day from 4-7pm you can choose from a selection of three dollar Prince Edward Island mussels, wine, and Pimm’s Cups. And don’t worry about portion size, the mussels are plentiful and are served with bread and two types of tapenade.
Abigail Gullo leads the bar team at this exquisite French Quarter bar that has a particularly magnificent ‘Happier Hour’ because, as they like to say, every hour is happy. From 3-6pm daily you can sample from an assortment of tasty food and drink that will only run you between 3-6 dollars each.
This Rampart Street cocktail bar/dive is one of the best spots for craft cocktails. But between 12-5pm on weekdays this fantastic spot gets even better. For just five dollars you can either pick the cocktail of the day or sample from the list of other five dollar cocktails including the Aviation, Moscow Mule, and Dark and Stormy.