By Steve Vogt
As someone who can’t sit still and loves hanging out with his friends, I’ve found I’m a bit of an anomaly in Rochester, NY. I eat out every night for dinner and I believe in mixing up the locale often. I try not to eat at the same place within 6 months. I will travel anywhere from Spencerport to Henrietta to Victor to Webster and everywhere in between for a great meal. I will eat at the greasiest spoons to the finest in dining that Rochester has to offer, as long as the food is decent. I give every restaurant 3 chances, if they can make it that long. And I try to keep my dollars local, keeping my money in the hands of local entrepreneurs. But sometimes I can’t resist stopping into Chipotle…
My friends text me weekly to ask me where they should go to dinner, where they should hold their birthday party, and where they should take their husband or wife for a special occasion. They call me “Mr. Rochester: the Rochester database of places to eat, drink, and dine.” And I love it. So friends, please keep texting me those questions.
I was sending my friends to so many places, that I started keeping lists on my phone: Best bars; Favorite restaurants; Best place for brunch; Restaurants with amazing patios in the summer; Great places for a first date; Places to take out of town visitors.
But what’s the use of having a list if it doesn’t get shared? Today I’m going to start letting you all in on some of my favorite local establishments, and I’m going to kick things off with my list of best happy hours.
Best Happy Hours
The “Happy Hour” concept was invented in larger cities, where it made sense to go to a pub and have a drink instead of sitting in your car in traffic. Drink until 7p and when the traffic died down you’d have no lines on the subway, bus, or highway. Since Rochester has little to no traffic, happy hour isn’t a priority here. But I’ve found some decent specials around town.
The locales below with listed happy hour specials have constant items. Those without specials change regularly but always offer a great deal. In no particular order…
Grayson’s Inn : Happy hour is 4 to 7p. Two for one wines, wells, and drafts.
Acme : I haven’t figured out the rules for happy hour here yet. Happy hour specials run all day, but they sometimes change and run 8p-1a. Your best bet is to call and ask.
Owl House : Happy hour from 5 to 7p.
Victoire : Happy hour from 4 to 6p – ½ price appetizers.
Lento : Happy hour is 4 to 6p. Specials change weekly, but are always excellent.
Good Luck : Happy hour is Wednesday through Saturday – 4:30 to 7p.
Salenas : Happy hour is Tuesday through Friday 3 to 6p. Every day offers something different, but margaritas are always $1 off and select drafts are $2.50.
Bunga Burger Bar : Happy hour is 3 to 6p. Two for one drinks are offered.
The Distillery : Always busy for happy hour. Different specials daily 3 to 6p. ½ price appetizers after 9p.
Lemoncello : Happy hour is 4 to 7p. $3 well drinks, $3 bottle and draft beer, $5 house wines, and $6 martinis.
Murphys Law : Always busy for happy hour and the clientele is different from the Friday, Saturday late night crowd. Different specials daily 4 to 7p.
Furoshiki : Happy hour is noon to 6p where they offer two for one wine, beer, and sake specials. 9 to 11p is cocktail hour where $3 feature wine, beer, and sake is offered.
Erie Grill : Happy hour is 4 to 7p. $4 drafts, $5 wines, and $6 artisan drinks.
Empire Bar and Grill : Happy hour is 3 to 6p. $2.50 wells, $2.50 wines, and $2 drafts.
Tbones : Happy hour is every Friday 4:30 to 7p. Two for one drinks are offered.
Shooters : Happy hour is 9p to 12a. $2.50 pints, $6 pitchers, and $3 wells.
Next Door by Wegmans : Happy hour is 4 to 7p and then picks back up for 9 to 10p.
The Angry Goat Pub : Happy hour is 4 to 7p. $2 off wine and cocktails, $1 off beers.
Blu Bar and Grill : Happy hour is 4 to 7p.
Char Steak and Lounge : Happy hour is 4 to 7p. $6 Svedka drinks.
Espada Brazilian Steak : Happy hour is 430 to 7p, $3 drafts, $6 Brazilian cocktails, and $2 off wine.
Restaurants open and close often in this town, so if you can afford it, get out there and explore Rochester on a daily basis. Because sometimes, even the good ones can close down. Take advantage; and I hope to see you out for happy hour soon!
Tags: ACME Bar & Pizza, artisan drinks, bars, beer, best bars, best place for brunch, best restaurants, Blu Bar and Grill, Bunga Burger Bar, Char Steak and Lounge, cocktails, Erie Grill, Espada Brazilian Steak, Furoshiki, Good Luck, Grayson's Inn, great place for first date, happy hour, Lemoncello, Lento, Murphy's Law Irish Pub, Next Door Bar and Grill, Next Door by Wegmans, Owl House, restaurants, restaurants with outdoor seating, Rochester, Rochester NY, Rochester restaurants, Salenas, Shooters, tBones Steakhouse, The Angry Goat Pub, The Distillery, Victoire, where to take out of town visitors, wine
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