There’s nothing better than hanging out with a bunch of friends and enjoying some drinks and nibbles before heading home from work. There are quite a few restaurants offering stellar cocktails, wine and beer, plus discounts on food items during this time. Here are a few of my favorites.
Red Bar at Hotel Irvine (Monday to Friday 3pm-7pm)
Chef Jason’s fare continues to shine next door to EATS. Here, you can enjoy Steamed Buns ($4.50), Ahi Poke ($6), and Lobster Tacos ($6) for four whole hours. There are also Beef Sliders ($4.50), Lumpia ($4) and Three Cheese Flatbread ($5) on the happy hour menu. One of my favorite cocktail offering is Dealer’s Choice, where you choose the spirit and the mixologist will create a drink for you!
EATS Kitchen & Bar at Hotel Irvine (Monday to Friday 5pm-7pm)
It sounds like serious debauchery, but I have on more than one occasion, started at Red Bar, then move to EATS at 5pm. The happy hour specials include $3 draft beers, $4 wines by the glass, and $4 craft cocktails. A delicious array of Small Bites are offered at $2 each. The menu has changed several times since the inception of the happy hour program, and coming this Monday, it will change once again to include JFC (Japanese Fried Chicken), Pretzel and Cheese, Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus and more.
SeaLegs Wine Bar (every day 4pm-6pm)
Few establishments offer a daily Happy Hour, but SeaLegs is one of those unique spots which does. This Huntington Beach restaurant has an extensive wine list and a stellar happy hour served at the bar. Select wines by the glass, craft beers and nibble on shared plates — all $5. Included are Bleu Fries, Braised Chicken Tacos, Bleu Sliders and my ultimate favorite, the incredible Beer Battered All Beef Corndogs.
Pizzeria Ortica (Sunday to Thursday 7pm to close)
There’s nothing more I like than to spend an evening with mixologist Joel Caruso while chomping down on some delicious food by Chef Justin Miller. Happy hour menu items are all $8 including Margherita Pizza, Salad, Arancini and more. The menu changes weekly, along with a different sangria offering which is highly addicting and incredibly difficult to stop at just one.
Lillie’s Q (daily 2pm-6pm)
Lillie’s Q in Brea is another great spot offering Happy Hour daily. You may select from four seasonal house-made cocktails for $6, TAPS Brewery selection draft beers for $5, and delicious bites such as Fried Pickles ($3) Smoked Chicken Wings ($5), and Smoked Deviled Eggs ($3), just to name a few.