Best happy hours for good beer
Hit these bars for craft suds at Bud Light prices.
Tue Feb 15 2011
Photograph: Michael Kirby Smith
Brooklyn Brewery taps are ubiquitous, but bargain-hunting boozers know to head straight to the source on weekends, when the brewery dispenses its goods for $4 per pint, or $20 for six. Eight varieties are at your disposal each week, ranging from standards (Brooklyn Lager) to seasonal releases. You might even get your hands on limited-edition sips from the geekworthy Brewmaster's Reserve series (recent editions have included a stout brewed with Stumptown coffee beans and a saison packed with Japanese hops). Fair warning: Friday nights get loud and crowded, so arrive early to claim your spot at one of the giant picnic tables. 79 North 11th St between Berry St and Wythe Ave, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-486-7422, brooklynbrewery.com). Fri 6--11pm, Sat noon--8pm, Sun noon--6pm.
Drop Off Service
This worn-in local offers the perfect happy-hour triple play of length, quality and price. From 3 to 8pm Monday to Friday (and 1 to 8pm on weekends), beers are served for just $3 to $5. While away the afternoon feeding the jukebox and knocking back $3 imperial pints of malty Old Speckled Hen, $7 pours of peppery Delirium Tremens or any of the other ten international brews on tap. American craft brews also get strong representation with 16 diverse options. To balance the bargain booze, nosh on Aussie meat pies ($5) and sausage rolls ($3) that the bar stocks from Tuck Shop. 211 Ave A between 13th and 14th Sts (212-260-2914)
4th Avenue Pub
On a strip packed with top-flight beer bars—Mission Dolores, Pacific Standard, Cherry Tree Tavern—this haunt stands out thanks to its generous happy-hour deals. On weekdays from 3 to 8pm, the pub shaves $2 off any of its 27 drafts and its cask ale (normally $6). Stock up on gratis munchies at the popcorn machine, then explore options including small-batch releases from Long Island's Greenport Harbor and San Francisco's Speakeasy Ales and Lagers. An ivy-clad patio invites hop heads to play hooky on warm days. 76 Fourth Ave between Bergen St and St. Marks Pl, Park Slope, Brooklyn (718-643-2273)
You won't get any funny looks for ordering a PBR at this laid-back Park Slope pub, which caters to beer drinkers of all stripes with its happy hour. From 3 to 7pm on weekdays, the bar shaves a buck off most brews (usually $6 or $6.50). You won't have trouble finding something you like: The 24-tap lineup covers everything from Guinness to 21st Amendment's rich, Belgian-style Monk's Blood, and those PBRs go for $2 if you're feeling especially thrifty. No wonder everyone seems to be having a good time—including the dogs that carefree owners seem to leave to their own devices. When the weather warms up, the outdoor patio has hotly contested real estate. 321 Fifth Ave at 3rd St, Park Slope, Brooklyn (718-768-4329)
Nothing's better than a happy hour that takes care of your thirst as well as your hunger. Satisfy all your needs at this hops-forward sports bar. Monday through Friday from 4 to 8pm, the bar selects three craft labels from its 16 drafts to sell for just $3 (usually $5--$7); recent taps to get the nod have included the toasty Coney Island Lager and Speakeasy's caramel-tinged Prohibition Ale. During the same hours, soak up the pints with $5 pub-grub specials like pulled-pork sliders and gravy-and-cheese--laden disco fries. 33-08 Broadway between 33rd and 34th Sts, Astoria, Queens (718-626-5393)