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Downtown Seatte happy hours

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christy319 Jun 18, 2010 01:34 PM

I was surprised I couldn't find a dedicated thread about this already so I thought I'd start one...

Been to any good downtown happy hours lately? I've had an awful lot of subpar happy hour food in the past year or two, even from restaurants where I'd expect better--a lot of places are phoning it in. The Brooklyn, the Met, Elliott's (except for the raw oysters--those are still great), Taste...I know hh isn't where the food is going to knock me out, but I expect a little more than I've been getting lately. And I'm always disappointed when good cocktails aren't on special--BOKA on Wednesdays, and Zig Zag (thumbs down on the food, though), are the only places I know that discount their house cocktails (not just wells). BOKA is also the only food standout for me these days--some one in the kitchen really does care about what they're putting out for HH.

So--what are your favorites?

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Zig Zag Cafe
1501 Western Ave Ste 202, Seattle, WA 98101

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  1. natalie.warner RE: christy319 Jun 18, 2010 01:54 PM

    I like Umi, Barolo, Sazerac, Spur, and Cellars

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    Barolo
    1940 Westlake Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101

    1 Reply
    1. re: natalie.warner
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      seattleviking RE: natalie.warner Jun 25, 2010 07:33 PM

      Since I just tried List I would say go for Barolo. The HH wine was a Vitiano Cab, Sang, Merlot and it was quite good for $14 a bottle... as in you probably couldn't get a better bottle for $14 in a restaurant. The gnocchi with black truffle cream is worth going for. Other dishes were very good but didn't knock my socks off. They were still a cut above most HH fare. The focus seems to be more on ingredients and less on fried salt than most HH stuff you find. Granted this is based on List [which is technically in Belltown] but Barolo is the same team.

      I also liked Szazerac. I've always liked the restaurant and I also enjoyed the HH.

      I really liked the Triple Door Happy Hour though not everything was great. The food was better than most of HH food I've tried around town. Wine was also good for HH wine.

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      Barolo
      1940 Westlake Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101

      Triple Door
      216 Union St, Seattle, WA 98101

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      cocktailhour RE: christy319 Jun 18, 2010 02:07 PM

      My most attended are Vessel, W, Wild Ginger--you can probably triangulate to my office building. Used to be Sazerac, but we haven't been able to get a table in a year, even showing up prior to 5, so we have given up. I would say Wild Ginger has the best food, but it's not super innovative or great. Oh, and Sip is ok. They have a patio I want to check on in warm weather.

      I went to BOKA yesterday for the first time in a couple years. My happy hour menu cocktail was still $10, and most were $7. A nice variety of food, but their fries are not as good as W's. They looked and tasted prefrozen.

      For cheap and filling, I know people who go to Barnard's on Seneca and who go to the rooftop at the Red Lion--they have a buffet.

      1. d
        ddttbm RE: christy319 Jun 21, 2010 06:47 PM

        Have you tried Purple? I went there once when they first opened and had a pretty good time. The appetizers were good but I really can't tell you about the cocktails. My libation of choice is Chopin rocks so as far as mixed drinks goes, I haven't a clue. Sorry.

        2 Replies
        1. re: ddttbm
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          christy319 RE: ddttbm Jun 21, 2010 08:15 PM

          I didn't know they had a happy hour--I don't see anything about it on the website. What do they offer?

          1. re: christy319
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            go2food RE: christy319 Jun 22, 2010 10:49 AM

            Purple does half off wine flights (usually $15-20) the real bargain. $4 beers, not sure about cocktails. Matador in Ballard has great HH $4/5 food but no drinks, I guess that's not downtown though. :)

        2. m
          minxycherub RE: christy319 Jun 22, 2010 01:14 AM

          i ditto Umi Sake House (around 1st Ave & Blanchard) and Barolo Ristorante (intersection of Westlake, Virginia, and 7th Ave).

          Wann Japanese Izakaya (around 2nd Ave & Lenora) is also pretty good for sushi and Del Rey (1st and Battery) has some decent food too.

          I've been meaning to try the Tom Douglas Restaurants (around 4th & Virginia) - prices seem OK but the food selection looks limited.

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          Barolo
          1940 Westlake Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101

          Umi Sake House
          2230 First Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121

          Del Rey
          2332 1st Ave, Seattle, WA 98121

          1. frygirl RE: christy319 Jun 23, 2010 04:55 PM

            Spur's happy hour is so good, I'm hard pressed to tear myself away to try any others. I'm addicted to their pork belly sliders and their smoked salmon crostini.

            5 Replies
            1. re: frygirl
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              christy319 RE: frygirl Jun 24, 2010 10:09 AM

              Do they have a pretty good selection of discounted food? The one time I was there they didn't even bother to tell us it was happy hour, and I only noticed a few discounted items written on a chalkboard when I used the restroom later. These items seemed pretty unexciting next to the regular menu (which is not inexpensive).

              1. re: christy319
                frygirl RE: christy319 Jun 26, 2010 06:12 PM

                You're right - the happy hour menu is exclusively on the chalkboard. It's not a huge selection (4-5 items) but always so good.

              2. re: frygirl
                Billy Bob RE: frygirl Sep 1, 2010 08:01 AM

                I second Spur for happy hour. Awesome, creative food and pretty cheap during happy hour!

                Billy Bob

                www.taoofchow.wordpress.com

                1. re: Billy Bob
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                  Scary Bill RE: Billy Bob Oct 4, 2010 05:01 PM

                  What time and days does Spur have HH? Can't seen to find it on their website.

                  TKS

                  1. re: Scary Bill
                    Billy Bob RE: Scary Bill Oct 5, 2010 06:59 AM

                    According to a recent Seattle magazine's review of the top five Happy Hours in Seattle, Spur's Happy Hour runs from Sun-Thu 5-7.

                    http://www.seattlemag.com/0p38a1772/b...

                    Billy Bob
                    www.taoofchow.wordpress.com

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                    Spur Gastropub
                    113 Blanchard Street, Seattle, WA 98121

              3. terrier RE: christy319 Jun 28, 2010 08:33 AM

                Mistral Kitchen's fantastic house cocktails (the Courting Rachel and Dragonfly Julep blew my mind) are $4 off during happy hour, and they have some $5 bites that are well worth that - this weekend had hamachi crudo and pork belly that were outstanding.

                Daily 5:00-6:30.

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                Mistral Kitchen
                2020 Westlake Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121

                1 Reply
                1. re: terrier
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                  orangefleabait RE: terrier Nov 5, 2010 03:33 PM

                  i have heard GREAT things about this place from the bartender's at poppy, who also has an incredible cocktail list.
                  i want to go see their open kitchens at mistral kitchen..

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                  christy319 RE: christy319 Aug 13, 2010 12:45 PM

                  I think Maximilien's is off my list, unless I just want a glass of inexpensive wine and the view. I'm not sure if the food quality has slipped or the view deck and price just distracted me from it on my many previous visits, but lately things haven't been that good, and last night the mussels were awful, the prosciuotto on the meat plate tasted old, and the pizza was quite overdone.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: christy319
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                    firecracker RE: christy319 Oct 4, 2010 07:11 PM

                    Thanks for the info, Christy. I didn't know Maximilliens had a view deck. I must have missed it. Place Pigalle has one and it is lovely to sit out there in good weather.

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                    slippek RE: christy319 Aug 26, 2010 05:06 PM

                    No one mentioned Il Bistro - one of the best happy hours ever, in my opinion. $3 bowls of veal rigatoni, $4 for mussels....you can eat a real meal for $10. So good.

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                    Il Bistro
                    93A Pike Street, Seattle, WA 98101

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                      christy319 RE: christy319 Oct 1, 2010 02:35 PM

                      I just went to Chez Shea for HH and was blown away. 4 excellent cocktails, 4 excellent food items, $32. All with nice ambiance, GREAT service, and a view. And no one was there! Diners started trickling in after 5 but we were the only ones there for HH, on a Thursday.

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                      Chez Shea
                      94 Pike St. Suite 34, Seattle, WA 98101

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: christy319
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                        firecracker RE: christy319 Oct 4, 2010 07:17 PM

                        Chez Shea and it's less expensibe bar and cafe is among my favorites, too! I think the quality of the food along with the creativity is head and shoulders above most downtown restos.

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                        Chez Shea
                        94 Pike St. Suite 34, Seattle, WA 98101

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                        CookingWithTruffles RE: christy319 Nov 5, 2010 12:06 PM

                        I went to Chez Shea Happy Hour recently. Friend ordered Pear & Pecan Salad (absolutely stunning) and I had the Lounge Burger. We both had some of the homemade potato chips. The burger was extremely juicy. I would say it was the juiciest burger I've ever eaten. The bun was superb; it was just thick and crusty enough to hold everything together. The chips were thin and kind of sweet, actually. Everything was very nice; the atmosphere and service of the restaurant are top notch. Definitely worth your time.

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                        Chez Shea
                        94 Pike St. Suite 34, Seattle, WA 98101

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                          christy319 RE: christy319 Nov 7, 2010 09:29 AM

                          Just found another great one--Tavolata. Top notch food and very generous portion sizes for not much money (pastas are $8, and the gnocchi with pork cheeks was the best gnocchi I've ever had). We had 2 pastas and 2 smaller plates, and we were stuffed. It was dinner. And they have it on weekends!

                          1. c
                            clearskies0810 RE: christy319 Nov 8, 2010 08:10 AM

                            Lately, I've really been enjoying the HH at Art at the four seasons. The mini burgers (of Cascadia fame) and the prosciutto plate are fantastic (as is the proximity to fran's chocolates). They have an all you can eat tapas bar which I tried recently, but was kind of disappointing. There is also an all you can eat cheese bar, which looks pretty great. Something that really sets Art apart is the setting and the service, both wonderful.

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                            Cascadia Restaurant
                            2328 1st Ave, Seattle, WA

                            1. m
                              munkeech RE: christy319 Nov 9, 2010 01:19 PM

                              Adding Pesos as a popular HH spot. I appreciate the big menu selection, and the red sangria's good. Music's a bit too loud to carry conversation.

                              For eastsiders:
                              Matador - My favs are the tacos, anything with steak is good, (I request it on the tacos, too), fried rolls. I'd skip the prawns
                              Bis on main - rotating menu of nice apps, such as duck nachos, truffle fries. They used to have a balsamic vinegar beef skewer that was fantastic, but didn't see it on there the last time I was there, and I like their sliders.
                              Palomino - can't beat thin crust pizza at $5, and I like to get the mushroom salad

                              Seattle's Weekly Happy Hours website and phone app has been really helpful when looking for a spur of the moment HH - http://www.gotime.com/mobile
                              I haven't tried it in other cities.

                              I should have looked for this thread earlier. Thanks for starting it!

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: munkeech
                                Joishii RE: munkeech Nov 11, 2010 07:32 AM

                                Matador is no bueno. Zero HH drink specials.

                              2. Joishii RE: christy319 Nov 11, 2010 07:31 AM

                                Wann Japanese Izakaya.
                                And the bartender is eye candy.

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                                  mcmullek RE: christy319 Nov 11, 2010 10:43 AM

                                  Japonessa Cocina has become my new go-to for after-work hh. The majority of their rolls are $4, draft beers are $3.5 with wine specials for $5. They have some other happy hour standards that we haven't tried (in addition to $1 miso and edamame), but the rolls were top-notch and same portions as regular menu.
                                  Really great service from the bar and a fab view of the water if you snag bar stools near the door.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: mcmullek
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                                    orangefleabait RE: mcmullek Nov 17, 2010 04:29 PM

                                    not a fan of billy bleach. won't support his endevours.

                                    1. re: mcmullek
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                                      roolala RE: mcmullek Nov 22, 2010 05:21 AM

                                      I just tried Japonessa's HH and it's great, cheap, Americanized rolls :) spicy spider for $4?! below umi in quality but there is a LOT more variety in food and rolls and it's HH almost 24/7 there!

                                    2. r
                                      roolala RE: christy319 Nov 22, 2010 05:18 AM

                                      personally, i love HH (though i admit i go more for the food than alcohol) and my favorite ones are:

                                      ventana- 1/2 off food, great for early or late night dinner and great drinks and specials
                                      matador- loveee their braised pork tacos and wings (and nachos are hugeee) but no drink specials :(
                                      barolo-great food...but HH is in the bar and the area is small so it can get crowded
                                      ART restaurant-LOVE their little burgers..always cooked to perfection (wasn't wow'ed by anything else though)
                                      umi- food and drink specials! like their calamari and HH is until 8pm in the front

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                                        sarsuelas RE: christy319 Dec 13, 2010 04:59 PM

                                        These guys have an amazing happy hour. Usually 5 to 7 or so. Each night its a different thing. Oyster happy hours are my favorite. You can buy any bottle of wine from the wine department and enjoy it right there! It's a really good deal.

                                        http://wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/we...

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                                          christy319 RE: christy319 Apr 5, 2011 07:56 PM

                                          I'm adding Lecosho to my list. Spaetzel with brown butter and pecorino! What better drinking food could there be. Other items were very good as well, as was service.

                                          1. l
                                            Lauren RE: christy319 Apr 6, 2011 01:22 PM

                                            There's a great new app called Seattle Cocktail Culture that lets you filter for tons of different things, including Happy Hour. It's written by my friend and fellow poster, little ms foodie.

                                            http://appshopper.com/travel/seattle-...

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: Lauren
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                                              christy319 RE: Lauren Apr 6, 2011 03:18 PM

                                              Thanks, Lauren! I know LMF would not steer me wrong...

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