Uptown Happy Hours
Seven Grand Whiskey Bar
3054 University Avenue, North Park
The Scene: North Park hipsters and yuppies mingle with serious cocktail geeks and the occasional member of the 20-something crowd who took a wrong turn. Drink: You’ve probably heard they do a mean Kentucky mint julep, and basically any drink with brown spirits. Believe the hype. And enjoy $5 house cocktails and $2 off drafts during happy hour, weekdays from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Nibble: Hang onto that sprig of fresh mint; Seven Grand doesn’t do food.
4677 30th Street, Normal Heights
The scene: A tiny, warm dining room with a tucked-away, twinkle-lit patio out back, Jaynes is popular with older uptown locals as well as special occasioners looking for a new “romantic dinner” spot. Drink: Happy hour is from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday, in the bar only. With just two high-tops and six bar seats, it’s cozy, but worth it for $6 craft cocktails made by friendly Sarah, or $4 Guinness or Trumer Pils pints. Nibble: The happy hour menu usually has four to five $5 items that rotate seasonally, with a few mainstays. And really, the mainstays are the stars. The mini Jayne burger is unctuous and potent with garlic aioli and pickled onions (and Kennebec fries!), and the white bean crostini is olive-oil-y perfect with a glass of Italian red.
The Red Door
741 Washington Street, Mission Hills
The scene: You can get the happy hour menu in the plush dining room until 5 p.m., but we prefer the smaller bar area, where happy hour goes until 6 p.m. With only a few tables and an upholstered banquette, there’s lots of comfy seating other than bar stools. Drink: The $3.50 craft beers are the best deal (try a Scrimshaw Pilsner or Mission Brewery IPA), but there’s also more than a dozen $5 wines by the glass. Certain fancy cocktails are also on special for $6 at happy hour. Nibble: If it’s cool out, go for the $5 soup of the day (the chef is known for cruising farmers markets for ingredients), but $9 will get you a healthy plate of shrimp Creole, white truffle poutine, or perfectly classic mussels in white wine, shallots, and herbs, topped with fries.