Happy hour in Minneapolis is an excellent social activity, especially for those who lead busy lifestyles. There are many reasons why it’s vital to enjoy happy hour including mingling with co-workers and friends, making new friends and building a social community, and of course, the discounted food and drinks. Budgeting for items off of the happy hour menu is often much easier than spending a much larger amount on a full dinner. While happy hour times and days vary by the restaurant or bar, a typical happy hour runs from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays.
Why Happy Hour In Minneapolis?
From cocktails to fine dining to musical entertainment, Minneapolis, Minnesota is known for its nightlife. It is a charming town and a music-rich community with no shortage of food and craft beers. The sleet and snow don’t hold residents of Minneapolis back from having a good time. There are always light and laughter at the local lounges and pubs. The establishments in Minneapolis have atmospheres that allow for both intimate and boisterous conversations. There are unique food and drink menus, a sassy vibe, and smart marketing promotions to bring in the crowds. Here is a list of some of the best Minneapolis happy hours the city has to offer.
Hai Hai Restaurant
Beginning at 3 p.m., Hai Hai restaurant serves up Asian fare that is flavorful and affordable. You’ll find duck wontons, salt and pepper tofu, and cocktails made with fresh juice for just a couple of dollars. Enjoy happy hour out on the patio where you will feel like you’re practicing your chopstick skills right on a Saigon street.
The Sample Room
The Sample Room is a hot spot on the Mississippi River for happy hour and specializes in small plates. Their turn-of-the-century brick building provides impressive skyline views. Head here with your colleagues and friends for $4 bacon and bleu cheese nachos and $3 cocktails. Conveniently, you can review their happy hour specials online.
The Blue Door Pub
Happy Hour tater tots smothered in wing sauce, deep-friend green beans, and Samauri wings are just a few of the many specialties that draw a crowd to The Blue Door Pub. It is one of the best Minneapolis happy hours thanks to their $3 tap beers and $6 wines. Their legendary burgers include Mount Blucuvious, with ghost pepper cheese, fried avocado, spicy bacon, and cilantro-lime sauce. With four locations, you’re sure to find a Blucy close to you. You can even take the Blucy Challenge!
Known as a cross between a neighborhood bar & grill and a gay nightclub, eagle/BOLTbar is conveniently located on Washington Avenue in East Town section of downtown Minneapolis. Try the “All You Can Swallow” Beer Bust on Sundays from 4pm – 8pm, featuring $11 lagers and $17 for Schell’s Dark and Seasonal. The Video Bar features show tunes starting at 4pm with all your favorite Broadway and musical video clips. Warm up with a mug of chili loaded with cheddar, onions, and sour cream.
After Work Happy Hours
There are comparatively few establishments that host happy hours on Friday and Saturday nights. What makes happy hour special is that it’s usually on a weeknight right after work. This is most likely the time of the day when you could really use a beverage and some fun conversation.
Going to happy hours with co-workers can help strengthen professional relationships. They are a great way to get to know people you might not interact with on a daily basis.
It’s better not to confine your social community to your colleagues, however. There are some things you might not want to share with people you’ll see in a conference room the next day. Meeting friends outside of work is a great way to expand your social group and ensure that you have many different types of friends in your life.
There are several factors to consider when choosing an after-work happy hour spot: Convenience, menu options, atmosphere, and value. Here are a few suggestions for excellent after work happy hours in the Twin Cities that have all of those characteristics.
The Oceanaire is widely known for its swanky seafood, like jumbo shrimp scampi with tomatoes, garlic butter, and angel hair pasta. However, it also has a sophisticated bar ideal for happy hour socializing. The signature cocktail is made with Havana Club Añejo Blanco Rum, Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur, fresh lime juice, Monin Banana Syrup, and Senior & Co. Genuine Blue Curaçao. You can also sip on $4 taps or $6 specialty drinks, and enjoy $5 blackened fish tacos or $8 filet mignon sliders.
The Depot Tavern
At the end of the day, The Depot Tavern is a great place for friends and laughter before hitting the painful commute. It is a converted Greyhound station that features pub food and a full bar. Enjoy $3 rails, house wines, and draft beer, plus half-priced appetizers. This is a great place to try microbrews like Fulton Lonely Blonde, featuring German noble hops and a touch of white wheat between American pale and crystal malts for a smooth body, or Surly Furious, a crimson-hued ale with waves of citrus, pine, and caramel-toffee.
The Living Room or Prohibition at W Minneapolis – The Foshay
Visit The Living Room on the first floor and / or Prohibition on the 27th floor. Both venues have Happy Hours from 5pm to 7pm Mondays through Fridays. Gather at The Living Room bar for a cocktail like Truth or Consequences – jalapeno pineapple infused Sauza Gold tequila, Grand Marnier, torn fresh cilantro, agave nectar, and fresh squeezed lime served with a Coronita – or share a punch bowl like the Grape Gorilla – Grey Goose Le Citron vodka, Buddy’s grape soda, white cranberry juice, fresh lemon juice, and Roederer Estate Brut.
Prohibition offers scotch, whiskey, cognac, wine, and more. Enjoy a New York Sour – Knob Creek rye whiskey, lemon, agave nectar, and red white – or Bluephoria – Stoli Blueberry vodka, St. Germain blueberries, and fresh lime. Or try a reserve wine like Mischief and Mayhem white burgundy or Saddleback Rancher red.
Both locations offer small plates like the grilled cheese – grilled sourdough, mahon cheese, preserved tomatoes, and roasted garlic – and crostini – rare seared aged tenderloin, roquefort, and smoked tomato marmalade.
Owned and operated by a husband and wife team, Nightingale offers locally-sourced food and beer. If you’d rather enjoy your happy hour on the weekend, stop into their Whittier neighborhood location between 2:30pm and 4pm on Saturday or Sunday for $3.50 wells and $5 wines and cocktails. Choose from a variety of gluten-free snacks like a pickle plate or oysters for $2.50 each.
Minneapolis has so much going on from arts and culture, picturesque lakes, top museums, to sporting events and the bustling nightlife. It’s a city that is fun for visitors and residents alike. You’ll never be anything short of entertained, and you can’t miss these excellent restaurants and bars.
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