Work sucks (and so does that Hinge date you were excited to meet last night who actually turned out to be someone who owned a pet ferret). Lucky for you, every single weekday there comes a moment when you’ve either finished all your to-dos or read the entire internet. When that moment arrives, you deserve to get yourself to the nearest establishment serving drinks priced at what you actually deserve to pay for them.
And while alcohol is always good, the superior Happy Hour setup involves deals on both good drinks and good food. Luckily, Austin has many of them. We’ve put together a guide to our favorite places to cure the Monday scaries, one half-priced drink and appetizer at a time.
When: Mon-Thurs 5-6pm
The Deal: $5 cocktails, $3 beers, $3 appetizers, and $6 rolls
Kome only has one hour designated for its deals and after-work happiness. But that just means we only invite the co-workers who never show up late to meetings and are willing to put up a very vague email auto-reply starting at 4:45pm.
When: Tuesday, Wednesday, Sunday 9pm-12am, Thurs-Sat 9pm-2am
The Deal: $5 cheeseburgers, $5 draft cocktails, $1 Pearl beers
Reverse Happy Hour fills an important void for people whose bosses aren’t OK with them leaving work at 4pm to go drink, even if it is more “fiscally responsible.” You’ll be much happier enjoying your cheeseburger late at night at Better Half rather than worrying about getting an all caps “Where r u?” text from your boss at 5:07pm.
When: Mon-Thurs 3-6pm
The Deal: $5 glasses of wine, half off bottles of wine, $4 beer, $16 pitchers, $5-10 appetizers and pizza
Located within walking distance of a number of co-working spaces/yoga studios/bookstores downtown, North Italia has one of the best Happy Hours in the area. The $20 Bottle and Board deal gets you a bottle of wine and a pizza or chef’s board, which is perfect for after you leave your coworking office to buy a book about meditation, or try out that new yoga class that’s just an hour of happy baby pose.
When: Weekdays 2-5pm
The Deal: Half off boozy slushies, beer, and wine; select menu items $4-9
The set-up at Loro is ideal for work Happy Hours, so snag a picnic table for your whole team and spend most of the time on a secret Slack channel furtively and furiously talking about Sharon’s double-dipping habit. It’s also the only time of day you can order the burger, which makes all of the double-dipping bearable.
When: Monday-Saturday 3:30-6:30pm, all day Sunday
The Deal: $4 house cocktails, $1 off draft beers, $2 off snacks
Things we’re grateful for at a Happy Hour: enough seating for all of the coworkers/friends you actually like, a patio to remind you that the sun does still exist even if you don’t see it all day, and free popcorn because snacks are what make us happiest. Order the wings and spinach and artichoke dip and just be glad it’s tax season or whatever time of year means that no one from finance showed up.
When: Monday-Thursday 5-7pm
The Deal: $5 select drinks, $3 Modelo, $5-8 snacks
Whether you’re running away from all of your unopened emails or avoiding going home to your roommate who wants to talk about why you consistently eat their groceries, Last Straw is your escape. The beachy vibe and tiki drinks will make you feel like you’re on PTO, even though you still have to return to the fluorescent lights and communal hummus of your office tomorrow.
When: Monday-Friday, 4-6pm
The Deal: 25% off all food; half off all sparkling wine; $2 off all other drinks
During June’s daily Happy Hour, everything on the menu - from fried chicken sandwiches to burrata - is half off. So is the champagne, which means you can have a proper toast to your new favorite Happy Hour in town.
When: Daily, 4-5:30pm
The Deal: Half off all pizzas; $5 bites; $4 drafts; $5 house wine; half off all bottles of wine under $100
If it’s too early for dinner, grab a snack at Bufalina and order a bottle of wine normally reserved for an engagement announcement - or finishing a very elaborate puzzle - for half off. And then promptly get some pizza afterward.
When: Daily, 4:30-6:30pm
The Deal: $5-11 appetizers; $5-7 select cocktails; $6 select wines; $3-5 select beers
When it’s 4:30pm on a Friday, head to Yuyo with your coworkers for an impromptu “brainstorm.” You can get a pisco punch or glass of rosé sangria for $5-7, along with a few appetizers, all of which will help you finish the week strong (or just start your weekend early).
When: Daily, 5-7pm
The Deal: $6 classic cocktails
If you want to claim a spot on Ah Sing Den’s patio before it fills up, stop by for a $6 classic cocktail from 5-7pm. When you get a second drink, make sure to order some dumplings or poke nachos, too.
When: Monday, all night; Tuesday-Sunday 4:30-6:30pm
The Deal: Half off bar food; $2 off all drinks; only at the bar
Unless you’re really going all-out, dinner at Jeffrey’s is a little expensive for a casual weeknight. But their daily Happy Hour is a great time to grab a few drinks and half-price appetizers at the bar, and see who goes out for $50 risotto on a Wednesday.
When: Sunday-Thursday, 2:30-6:30pm
The Deal: Half-price select bottles of wine and large format beer; $3 select beers; $6 seasonal draft cocktail; half-price select food (5-6:30pm only)
If you’re only working a half-day, or think you might lose it if another person asks you to “circle back” in an email, head to Odd Duck for one of the earliest Happy Hours in town. You can get a $6 draft cocktail or some half-price wine, and see how long you can extend an already late lunch without your coworkers noticing.
When: Tuesday, 5-9pm (All Night); Wednesday-Friday until 7pm
The Deal: $5 snacks; half off select bottles of wine and cocktails
Powerpoint presentation days are the worst days. But here’s some good news: powerpoint presentations don’t exist in real life - especially at places like Jacoby’s, which feels like a real escape from the hustle of downtown. This is the perfect spot to grab a patio table with friends, have a few drinks, and split some deviled eggs and hush puppies.
When: Daily, 5-6:30pm
The Deal: $6 makimono; $3-9 tastings; $3-7 sake and beer; $6 seasonal dessert
Uchi is best known for their sushi, but what they should actually be best known for is their “sake social,” the daily Happy Hour during which you can sample excellent rolls and classic Uchi bites for a fraction of the price. If you haven’t been, you’re doing things all wrong. P.S. this happens at Uchiko, too.
When: Weekdays, 4:30-6:30pm
The Deal: $5 sausages; $3 pretzels, and beer cheese; $13 Antonelli’s cheese plate; $4 select cocktails; $3 select beers
Just need a place to kick back with some beers and snacks? You can’t do much better than Easy Tiger’s beer garden. $3 on everything you might want here means that even if you go a little crazy, there’s very little chance you’re spending more than $20.
When: Daily, 3-6pm
The Deal: Weekdays: 50 cents off oysters; half off burgers; $5 martinis, oyster shooters & draft beers. Weekends: 50 cents off oysters; half-price bottles of wine; $5 oyster shooters
We love oysters, you love oysters. But everyone loves them more when they’re not so expensive. You’ll come to Clark’s for their Happy Hour-priced oysters, but you’ll stay for the burger (half-off has never looked so good) and patio.
When: Daily 3-6pm
The Deal: $4 beers; $5 sangría; $6-7 margaritas; discounted appetizers
El Alma is home to one of the best patios in Austin, and somehow not everyone has figured out about it yet. Sit on the double-level roof under an umbrella, enjoy your Happy Hour margarita and guacamole, and feel pretty damn good about your decisions.
When: Weekdays, 5-7pm in the bar area
The Deal: Half-off all alcoholic beverages; appetizer specials
Austin has many, many margaritas. But La Condesa’s margarita ranks at the very top of all of them. And during Happy Hour at the bar here, you can get it for half off.
When: Daily, 5-6pm
The Deal: Half off cocktails, beer, wine, and full food menu Wednesday: Half off oyster platters and bubbles all night
Hidden in the depths of Dirty Sixth, Parkside has a short but mean daily Happy Hour. Here’s your strategy: get there when it starts, order two of everything, and you’ll be set for the evening.
When: Daily, 5-7pm
The Deal: $5 select beers; $6 select wine and cocktails; $4 tacos; $5 snacks; $7 burger
“Asian fusion” might make you think of a sad hotel restaurant, but The Peached Tortilla couldn’t be farther from it. This is Southern food with an Asian twist (like Chinese pork tacos), and the bright, light environment is a great place to unwind after work.
When: Tuesday-Friday, 4-6pm
The Deal: $5 cocktails and bites
Leaning towards an East Side night? Start out at Licha’s to kick it off with $5 margaritas and food. The only possible downside is that you might just end up sticking around all evening.
When: Weekdays 4-7pm; Weekends 2-5pm
The Deal: $7-9 cocktails
Whisler’s is already a crowd favorite for its giant outdoor space, but its $7 cocktails are enough to make anyone a regular between 4 and 7pm. And while the Thai Kun truck in the back doesn’t do any Happy Hour specials on its food, everything is wallet-friendly anyway.
When: Mon-Thurs 5-6:30pm
The Deal: $1 off bar snacks, draft beer, and wine by the glass; $2 off cocktails; daily specials
The perfect post-work spot to grab a table outside and beers for the crew. In terms of the food, you can’t really go wrong - but the crispy green beans are an excellent way to eat your veggies while also eating something fried.
When: Weekdays 4-6pm; Weekends 3-4pm
The Deal: $4.50 margaritas; $1 off draft beers; half-price appetizers; $6.50 ceviche
You need to get to Takoba for its $6.50 ceviche, but you also need to get there early because the place fills up fast. Go heavy on the half-price appetizers and call it a meal.
When: Daily, 3-6:30pm
The Deal: $4-8 select cocktails and margaritas; $23-35 pitchers; $5-11 appetizers
El Chile is always an excellent decision for a group outing, though we make no promises about your inevitable fourth pitcher. This is the kind of place where it’s easy to stay and hang a while.
When: Daily 4:30-6:30pm
The Deal: $2 off all signature cocktails; $5 wines; $4 craft drafts; $5-6 tacos and bites
At a lot of Happy Hours, you can get a single kind of cocktail and two kinds of appetizers for a slightly discounted price. Not Salty Sow. This is where you come for a Happy Hour smorgasbord, involving tons of cocktails (five kinds of margaritas alone) and tons of bites. If you’re trying to eat and drink well inexpensively, Salty Sow’s Happy Hour is one of the best options in town.