Wednesday, May 20, 2015

5 great happy hour specials around Des Moines

For the last year, one of my main responsibilities at work has been covering the nightlife section, which means I write an article each week about a different bar in the Des Moines area. I know, rough life, right? ;) But I've researched and visited a lot of bars and restaurants around here, and I'm beginning to know my way around fairly well.

I'm not saying I know all the hottest spots — there are approximately a billion (or at least a couple hundred) places to get a drink in Des Moines — but I do know a great happy hour special when I see it. And since everyone needs to take some time for happy hour once in a while, I've rounded up 5 of my favorite happy hour specials in downtown Des Moines and West Des Moines.

1. Cowboy Jack's / West Glen
3-6 p.m. and 10 p.m. to midnight / $2 rail and call drinks, select beers; $4 house wines; half-off select appetizers
This might be THE best happy hour around — and it happens twice a day! My mom actually meets her friends here after work about once every two weeks, and I don't blame her. Cowboy Jack's has great appetizers (try the calamari!), and you can't beat $2 drinks. The really great part? Happy hour continues on Saturdays, which is extremely unique.

2. Eatery A / downtown
3-6 p.m. / Half-off beer, wine and wood-fired pizzas
Disclaimer: I've only actually eaten here once. BUT that's all it took for me to fall in love. Adam and I went to Eatery A for our anniversary last year and tried one of their amazing wood-fired pizzas. We thought they were reasonable at full price, so the half-priced happy hour is pretty amazing. The wine was equally delicious.

3. Johnny's Hall of Fame / downtown
4-6 p.m. / 50-cent wings; $2.25 domestic draws, bottles and wells; $7.50 domestic pitchers
Any place that offers 50-cent wings is my kind of place. Johnny's has great food all around, and the atmosphere is so lively and fun. Plus, you can't beat those drink prices, especially if you're going with a group.

4. Bar Louie / West Des Moines
4-7 p.m. / $3.25 drafts, $4.25 wines, $5.25 martinis, half-off select appetizers and flatbreads
Bar Louie holds a special place in my heart because it was one of the first bars I wrote about when I started my job. It had just opened up and I took my mom there for martinis at happy hour. I ordered my first-ever dirty martini (and impressed the bartenders for drinking it). Anyway, Bar Louie has a all sorts of great cocktails, but the flatbreads are the real winners.

5. The Stuffed Olive / downtown
4-6 p.m. / $2 off tapas, beer and wine
Speaking of martinis, The Stuffed Olive (formerly The Standard) has a martini menu the size of a small book. For real. It's a classy place, so the prices are a bit higher than the other bars on this list, but if you're in the mood for it, it's definitely worth it.

Enjoy your happy hour :)

P.S. Creme Cupcakes + Desserts, Eatery A and RoCA

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