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It was one of the first lessons your parents taught you: a few drinks a week, keeps you feeling at your peak. We can’t just sit by while you live a life deprived of copious Happy Hour tips, so we set out on a mission to find the best Happy Hours in the city.

Who doesn’t want to spice up their early evening deals? We covered our bases and included 20 of our favorite places to spend the happiest hours of the day. Pizza pop-ups, $1 Thai Teas, and specials just for flashing your tats are just a few of the specials Sacramento boasts.

Study up and we’ll see you out there!IMG_0009

If Craft Cocktails Are Your Priority

Bottle & Barlow

Location1120 R St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 5PM-8PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $6 Specialty Cocktails, $1 Off Well Spirits/Canned Beer, $2 Off Draft Beer/Wine
Why We Love It: Bottle & Barlow consistently slings A+ craft cocktails; and the hip, moody decor doesn’t hurt either. Whether you’re grabbing a drink after your fresh cut or looking for a spot for weeknight hangs, this is a reliable answer to all your cocktail qualms. They don’t serve food, but you’d never know; local food trucks and pop-up chefs like The Roaming Spoon, Pizza Supreme Being, and The Wandering Chef often hang around to feed the masses.BB_0063

Shady Lady

Location: 1409 R St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $7 House Cocktails, $5 House Wines, $4 Well Drinks
Why We Love It: Shady is known for serving up some of the best cocktails in Sacramento and happy hour is the perfect opportunity to try as many of these beloved cocktails as you can without breaking the bank. Their happy hour menu items run $5-$12. Try the Gin and Tonic, prepared using their housemade tonic.

Hook & Ladder Manufacturing Co.

Location: 1630 S St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-6PM, Monday-Friday; Friday-Saturday 10PM-12AM
What They’re Serving: $7 Cocktails, $6 Wine, $5 Well Spirits, $2.50-$4.50 Beer
Why We Love It: Home of the Godfather of the Sac Cocktail, Chris Tucker, Hook & Ladder’s cocktails don’t disappoint. Order up some happy hour plates ($5-$8) and watch the master mix up your drinks. Switch things up with their selection of Japanese Whiskey or get down with $8 Korean BBQ sliders. hookandladder_0003

Hock Farm Craft and Provisions

Location: 1415 L St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 4PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $3 Beer, $5 Wine, $6 Cocktails
Why We Love It: Just a hop, skip, and a jump away from the State Capitol, Hock Farm serves up both mouth-watering dishes and delicious craft cocktails. The bartenders are always ready to personalize your drink based on your taste, leaving you the happiest possible. Happy hour appetizers are only $3. Order a few of those and a round of cocktails to enjoy on their patio overlooking Capitol Park.

The Red Rabbit

Location: 2718 J St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-6PM, Monday-Friday; Thursday-Saturday 10PM-12AM
What They’re Serving: $7 Featured Cocktails, $2-$3 Select Beers, $4 Well Drinks, $5 Wine
Why We Love It: This spot has a great feel, high energy but not overwhelmingly loud for you low-key folk. $2 street tacos and $3 sliders will keep you on their J Street patio all night. Step out of your comfort zone by giving the adorably hipster bartender your favorite spirit and flavor and ask him to surprise you.

Hawks Public House

Location1525 Alhambra Blvd, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 2:30PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $3 Beer, $7 Wine/Cocktails
Why We Love It: The new Hawks location does it all, from coffee and grab-and-go lunch, to craft cocktails and bites; complete with happy hour discounts. The team at Hawks is constantly creating, and their excitement is contagious. Enjoy 20% off the lunch and dinner menu until 5PM during happy hour.

Block Butcher Bar

Location1050 20th St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $5 Wines, $2 Off House Cocktails
Why We Love It: Block has the ambiance of a speakeasy and the friendly staff of your favorite local pub. Yes, it has it’s own entrance but if you’re taking a friend out for drinks, enter through LowBrau and head through the back entrance for a dramatic and exciting surprise. Their cheese and charcuterie boards are standard and pair perfectly with any of their house cocktails you might order.IMG_0039

If You’re in it for the Food

Grange

Location: The Citizen Hotel at 926 J St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $7-$8 Specialty Cocktails, $6 Wine, $5 Beer
Why We Love It: If you work downtown, you now have no excuse. An after-work cocktail with a co-worker never looked so good. Take advantage of your all-day parking spot and hit up this local hot spot. Grange features affordable cocktails and a special menu during happy hour. Try their fried pickles and housemade potato chips for a salty treat.IMG_0047

Ella Dining Room + Bar

Location: 1131 K St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $5.50 Wine/Beer, $6.50-$12.25 Specialty Cocktails
Why We Love It: No need to wait until Dine Downtown to enjoy Ella’s elegant dining room on a budget. Happy hour cocktails start at $6.50 and the special menu gives you a chance to beat the crowd and high dining prices. Order up an artisanal cheese board and try their local favorite, housemade tonic.  

Skool

Location: 2319 K Street Sacramento
Happiest Hours: All Day, Tuesday; 3PM-6PM, Wednesday-Sunday 
What They’re Serving: $4 Beers, $6 Wines, $6 Sake, $3-$5 M’ocktails
Why We Love It: Skool’s “Detention Hall” is anything but punishment. This new, “fish-focused” restaurant knows how to serve up one seriously happy hour. Drink specials start at $3 and bites run from $4-$7. You could enjoy specials for an extra hour on weekends or you could pencil in happy hour at Skool every Tuesday where happy hour runs all night long and oysters are 50% off!

Paragary’s

Location: 1401 28th St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 4PM-9PM Monday; 4PM-6PM Tuesday- Friday; 2:30PM-5PM Saturday & Sunday
What They’re Serving: $8 Cocktails, $8 Wine,  $5 Draught Beer
Why We Love It: Paragary’s doesn’t serve a bad cocktail, at least not with Beverage Director, Brad Peters, and 2016 Star of the Bar winner, Baron Stelling, behind the bar. Don’t get too caught up in the drinks so that you miss out on the special menu. Regular items run from $9-$22 and bites are only $5-$10. Other things on our list when you stop in: epic patio lounging and #ihaveathingwithfloors photo opportunity.IMG_0017

Empress Tavern

Location1013 K St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 4PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $5 Beer, $7 Wine, $7 Specialty Cocktails
Why We Love It: When the owners of Mother, a downtown vegetarian spot, opened Empress Tavern, a carnivore dungeon, Sacramento let out a collective “hooray.” Located inside The Crest Theatre, there is no reason not to enjoy Happy Hour before the show. Drink specials, as well as $5 bites and a special menu running from $12-$19 will send you happily on your way to the theater.

Magpie Cafe

Location: 1601 16th St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 2:30PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $5 Well Drinks, $6-$9 Cocktails, $1 Off Draft Beer/Wine
Why We Love It: Magpie is a perfect mix of fine dining and casual cafe. The environment is comfortable and friendly and the food screams fresh, quality ingredients and careful preparation. Boasting a true farm-to-table menu, Magpie offers happy hour bites from $4-$9, which is a total steal!Nicole Wallace - 2016-8-1.Magpie-Happy-Hour.-057-

If You Just Want to Let Loose and Have Fun

Azul

Location1050 20th St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-7PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $5 Margaritas/Well drinks, $3.25 Beer
Why We Love It: Azul is already a bargain but throw in some happy hour specials and there is really no reason to stay away. $3 nachos, quesadillas, and other appetizers are a great deal for quick bites. Free chips and salsa are always available but also make the Happy Hour that much better. If you overlap Taco Tuesday and Happy Hour, you’re looking at three tacos and a margarita for $8. Drool.

Thai Canteen

Location1501 16th St #109, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-6PM, Everyday; 7PM-10PM, Sunday-Monday; 7PM-1AM, Tuesday-Saturday (Happier Hour)
What They’re Serving: $1.50 Sake, $1 Thai Iced Tea, $5 Wine, $3.50 Draft Beer, $1 Off Bottled Beer
Why We Love It: Thai Canteen’s “Happier Hour” is just that, happier. Of course, classic cocktails at 5PM is grand but $5 curry and $1.50 sake until 1AM? That’s what true happiness is made of. Happier Hour is from 9PM-1AM, perfect for late night hankerings or post-bar munchies. Select menu items are priced conveniently under $6 although not available for take-out. Try their crispy egg rolls and Thai Tea for a little extra treat.

INK Eats & Drinks

Location: 2730 N St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 4PM-7PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: Varying Daily Specials
Why We Love It: INK is always mixing things up with varying Happy Hour drink and food specials. Additionally, they have unique daily specials that you won’t want to miss. On Movie Night Monday, enjoy a movie and $5 cocktails from 9PM to close. Got tats? On Tuesdays, flash your ink for $3 shot specials. And on weekends enjoy late night happy hour from 10PM until midnight.IMG_0026

58 Degrees & Holding

Location: 1217 18th St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 4PM-7PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $5 House Wines, $4 Draft Beers
Why We Love It: “Happy Hour” can sometimes feel synonymous with “cocktails.” No complaining here, but sometimes it’s nice to switch things up a bit. Enter, 58 Degrees. With bar bites running $6-$10, $6 house wines and a patio, what’s not to love? It’s not technically Happy Hour, but no-corkage Sunday’s are a thing at 58 Degrees and that can make for a pretty happy few hours.

Tank House BBQ

Location1925 J St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 3PM-6PM, Monday-Friday
What They’re Serving: $5 House Cocktails, $3 Well Drinks, $1 Off Wine/Beer
Why We Love It: If your Happy Hour is only happy when it includes meat, cheese, and tots, Tank House is your spot. Ribs, brisket, corn bread, and tater tots are just the beginning. Happy Hour items run from $3-$11. Tank House has excellent beer options and the Dirty Tots (tater tots smothered in cheese sauce and topped with pulled pork and tangy BBQ sauce) are a must.

Coin-Op Game Room

Location: 908 K St, Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 4PM-6PM (Monday-Friday)
What They’re Serving: $6 Specialty Cocktails, $3 Draft Beer of the Day, $4 Well Drinks
Why We Love It: If we’re talking about where to spend your happiest hours, why not a room riddled with nostalgia, pizza and craft cocktails? Coin-Op Game Room is every 10-year-old’s dream, plus booze. Play your favorite childhood arcade games inside or giant Jenga and Connect 4 on the patio, all while sipping on some deliciously marked down cocktails and pizza ($4-$10). All day happy hour on Mondays makes for happy grown-up 10-year-olds. Who needs work anyway?IMG_2230

Old Soul at the Weatherstone

Location: 812 21st St Sacramento
Happiest Hours: 11AM-1PM, Daily; 7PM-8PM
What They’re Serving: $1 off Craft Draft
Why We Love It: Introducing Hump Day Wednesdays at Weatherstone. These Wednesday hours are now meant for drinking craft draft on one of Sacramento’s hippest patios. Enjoy select small plates for $5, and while you’re at it, throw some of Sac’s best coffee into the mix.
Venture out early for dinner, push morning meetings back, or celebrate Fridays just because. Happy Hour is waiting.

 

Photos | Susan Yee, Nicole Wallace, Stephanie Rudy

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