BY: ASHLEY BERMUDEZ
Fall semester is speeding its way through September, and I’m sure many of you are looking for a break whenever you can get it. Well, I took on the task of hunting down the best happy-hour bars to sneak away to during the week. This happy-hour tour begins and ends in the streets of Long Beach’s East Village Arts District.
First stop: The Stache Bar
The Stache Bar is home to many locals drinking up awesome deals. Bar manager, Brenden Burley, boasts a come-one, come-all energy with his big beard and even bigger smile. There are a few rules written above the bar that help keep the vibe light– No politics and no Avril Lavigne… never Avril Lavigne. Consider this your warning– play what you will, but choose wisely!
Whether you’re looking to have a quick beer or take your time savoring a classic cocktail, this place has it all. But, the best part, happy hour– all day, every day. Did I mention prices? We’re talking anywhere from $2 beers to $7 craft cocktails. And it gets better. If you’re a Dodgers fan, you can watch the game here and enjoy $2 Pabst Blue Ribbon’s through the entirety of the game, no matter the time. Not a baseball fan? Similar deals are available during NFL games, as well. Either way, I’m a fan of booze, so you can count me in. The ginger beer is made in-house, so definitely try the Moscow Mule for a refreshing sting.
Happy Hour: 2-9 p.m., Monday-Friday
941 E 4th St, Long Beach, CA 90802
Second stop: V Room
Once you’ve finished up at The Stache, you can make your way across the street to the V Room. Yup, thats right, stop two is just a jaywalk away (I am not condoning anything… but make sure to look both ways and walk fast).
Important note: V Room is CASH ONLY. If you don’t have cash, there is an ATM inside. This is the place to be to sit back and enjoy a cold beer. If you’re up for it, there are two pool tables ready for you to have some friendly competition. The locals recommend the “Boiler Maker,” which is any domestic beer paired with a shot of Jameson, Jim Beam or Powers Irish Whiskey. With $3 well drinks and $4 imported beers, V Room is a great place to get a good buzz going. Don’t forget to check out the jukebox, filled with tunes like “You Give Me Fever” and “Stairway to Heaven.”
Happy Hour: 3:45-6:45 p.m., Monday-Friday
918 E 4th St, Long Beach, CA 90802
Third stop: Padre
After getting your fill of good music and beer, you’ll be ready for some good food. You can soak in the cool ocean breeze as you walk a few blocks over to Padre for some Latin-inspired meals and cocktails. Take your pick of a seat at the bar or on the booth along the wall. The bartenders here are no joke. Between crafting fancy margaritas and specialty cocktails, the bartenders have speed down. Happy hour gets tastier with $2 tacos and $6 for warm tortilla chips and a heaping bowl of fresh guacamole (I licked the bowl! Zero regrets). As for alcohol, bottled beers are $3 and all specialty drinks are $7. I’m not one for margaritas, but Padre serves them up strong, smooth and on ice. Believe me, you’ll want to order one.
Happy Hour: 4-7 p.m., Monday-Friday
525 E Broadway, Long Beach, CA 90802
Last stop: The Blind Donkey
As the saying goes, we’ve saved the best for last. The Blind Donkey not only extends its happy hour to 8 o’clock, but serves the cheapest classic cocktails and has perfect games to play with your group of friends. You can choose from a game of darts, pool or shuffleboard. This is a whiskey bar, so you’ll definitely want to take a look at its bottle selection.
Old-fashioneds and Moscow Mules are only $6. For that price and flavor, you’ll find yourself wanting more, which is all too easy with the helpful and attentive team of bartenders. While your pallet may be saying “more old-fashioneds,” your brain shall remind you that you have class in the morning. But, before you go, be sure to stop by the vintage Photo Booth to take home the memory of the best happy hour in Long Beach.
Happy Hour: 5-8 p.m., Monday-Friday
149 Linden Ave, Long Beach, CA 90802