Click here for updates on the evolving COVID-19 situation at Rice
Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Monday, September 21, 2020 — Houston, TX °

Hunting for happy hours

dak_and_bop_good_eats_houston

Photo courtesy Good Eats Houston.

By Walden Pemantle     3/21/18 12:07am

I love Willy’s Pub and Valhalla as much as the next guy. The cheap craft beer and convenient location of both bars make it hard to justify schlepping off campus and ponying up $10 a drink at any “more fashionable” off-campus bar. Still, missing out on the enormous array of cocktail bars, ice houses and dives that make up Houston’s bar scene would be a real shame, and for those willing to hunt, a number of excellent bars nearby offer happy hours cheap enough to stay within your beer money budget.

Benjy’s



Benjy’s in the Village is the closest and most highly recommended happy hour in our area. Before discovering the swanky second-floor lounge, I had held Benjy’s to be the quintessential restaurant to visit with parents or a time someone else could pick up the bill. However, Benjy’s happy hour, served from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, offers $3 beers, $5 wines and $6 cocktails, plus a number of discounts on house specials. The Brussels sprouts with peanuts and bonito flakes is highly recommended at $6 a bowl, and the $8 burger and beer combo over-delivers with a fluffy, sweet bun and impressively juicy patty.

LUCILLE’s

On the pricier side of the spectrum, Lucille’s happy hour is still worth trying for its food specials and the wide range of botanicals used in their cocktails. Complex layered herbal house cocktails like “The Garden” are $3 off, leaving most around $6 or $7. The famous chili biscuits, while tiny, are also served in fours for $4 and additional discounts are offered on specials like fried catfish and oxtail gremolata. Happy hour runs from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. daily.

THE HAY MERCHANT

My personal favorite of the bunch, Hay Merchant simultaneously manages great deals, a relaxed atmosphere (You can just as easily catch a game or chat over a plate of nachos) and creative, delicious food. Happy hour runs from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and simply entails a subset of 23 beers from the massive beer list priced down to $3 a pour. Knowledgeable servers and helpful descriptions on the menu ensure you’ll find a beer suited to your taste. While the only food deal is a typical beer-burger-shot combo, dishes like the PB&J wings, crispy pigs ears and the Cease & Desist burger are already well priced at $14 and under. It’s not walking distance, but a quick ride on the 56 bus will get you a block away.

GRAND PRIZE

For a low effort trip, Grand Prize is a quick walk up Montrose from campus and has accurately been described as “divey yet dank.” Operating out of a converted, dimly lit house by Bell park, Grand Prize is among Houston’s best known hipster dive bars. Happy hour is fairly limited with $2 PBR specials, $3 wells and $5 frozen cocktails, but it lasts from 4 until 8 p.m., and the $5 cheeseburgers put more expensive burger outlets (I’m looking at you, Bernie’s and Hopdoddy) to shame. With straightforward, tasty drinks, and even better bar food, Grand Prize is well worth a trip while in the museum district. You may even end up sticking around and hitting the upstairs dance floor.

Dak & Bop

Alternatively, why not try Dak & Bop while you’re in the Museum District? As far as happy hour goes, Dak and Bop is certainly the most limited, but it still deserves honorable mention for how well it accompanies the restaurant’s Korean fried chicken. The Korean double fried chicken is quite possibly the best in Houston; however the process means a consistent half-hour wait from order to table. Adding the restaurant’s popularity and no-reservations policy to the mix can mean truly grueling waits. Fear not though, the $2.50 wells offered during happy hour turn the wait into a win-win as showing up between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. means both a shorter wait and tasty drinks while you drool over your incoming fried chicken.



More from The Rice Thresher

FEATURES 9/15/20 10:59pm
Underpaid, overworked: Students speak out about challenges in leadership positions

On a sweltering day in August, groups of students across campus braced themselves for the daunting task ahead of them: spending hours helping new students move into their dorms. Move-in day kicks off Orientation Week every year, and nearly all Rice students are familiar with the ritual of sweaty, beaming advisors running back and forth with labeled cardboard boxes as incoming students start exploring their new home.  

NEWS 9/15/20 10:55pm
Rice among minority of peer institutions to hold in-person classes

U.S. News & World Report’s Top 20 colleges have adopted varying reopening plans and testing strategies for the fall semester. Rice, which has maintained a low positivity rate on COVID tests, joins only five other Top 20 institutions — the University of Chicago, the University of Notre Dame, Duke University, Vanderbilt University and Cornell University — in offering a hybrid or in-person classroom experience for the fall.

A&E 9/15/20 10:46pm
Sleepy Cyborg Galley kicks off semester with virtual exhibit, “Quaranzine”

In a world becoming increasingly dependent on dual-delivery, one has to ask how visual art, a mode of communication previously relegated mostly to the physical, is adapting to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  An example of this dual-delivery form of visual art can be found at the newly renamed, student-run Sleepy Cyborg Gallery in their first exhibition of the year called “quaranzine.”  


Comments

Please note All comments are eligible for publication by The Rice Thresher.