A Guide to Orlando’s Best & Cheapest Happy Hour’s
So there you are in sunny vacationland with the children, living the American Dream of the family vacation. You’ve worked all year and saved up enough money for the trip, found an excellent deal on your hotel, and you are now living that dream in the heart of “Kids Town Orlando”. Has it occurred to you that there just might be some time that you can get away for an hour or two and relax with other “like minded” and exhausted adults?
Happy Hour! That’s the ticket.
We’re going to suggest some of the best places in this children’s vacationland where you can have a cocktail, or a beer, or two, along with some terrific appetizers, and pay happy hour discounted prices. After all, we don’t want to feel guilty about spending tons of money that could be spent on Mickey Mouse Hats and the Alligator Park, do we?
Let’s start with Wines Grille & Wine Bar that was recently voted “Best Happy Hour in Orlando” by the Orlando style magazine. What could be better than relaxing with a super glass of wine or cocktail after your hectic day? At vines, they offer half price on over 36 different excellent wines by the glass as well as half price on their bar food menu. Happy Hour here at Vines is from 4 PM to 7PM, and the wine list features wines from California, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and more. Not a wine sipper you say, have you ever had a “Dirty Caesar”? Want one? They have a full bar and special Martinis.
The “snack” menu at the bar isn’t so bad either, with items like Mussels in saffron tomato broth, Parmesan Truffle Fries, Spicy Lamb Meatballs, Fresh Oysters and more. With the half price menu you can certainly eat a fantastic dinner on happy hour prices, and get the relaxation you deserve.
Our next stop is a perfect “getaway” on a tropical Bahama Island. Well, not exactly. Actually it’s the Bahama Breeze Island Grille on Vineland Ave. Although the happy hour is only from 4PM until 6PM that’s still enough time to take advantage of the great drink and food menu. An added fun part of happy hour at the Bahama Island is that there’s live music from 4:30 PM until 7PM. Its usually tropical but what else would you expect?
They have half price drink and appetizer specials each night, with $2 draft beers and $3 bottle beers. All wines are offered at $2 off per glass as well as premium brand cocktails at $3 each. Just think of the smile on your face as you exit the theme park knowing that in a bit you will be relaxing and sipping on a Mojito Cubano or Pineapple Coconut Martini.
For a look at those half-price appetizers, think how quickly you can get filled up with a plate of Habanero Chicken Wings or Firecracker Shrimp Street Tacos. Maybe you want to try their Skillet Simmered Jerk Shrimp or Lobster & Shrimp Quesadilla? Do we have your attention yet?
So is a couple hours spent relaxing at happy hour among adults sounding appealing?
If a more “upscale and warm ambience type of setting is in the picture for your happy hour, them the Courtesy Bar on N. Orange Ave downtown might just be the place for you. Happy Hour is from 5PM until 8PM and offers some good eats at happy hour prices, as well as your choice of $4 beer, wine, well drinks or their signature-handcrafted punch. The bar itself is set in a 1920’s style with low lighting and an old style stamped tin ceiling offering more personal with a secluded feel.
The specialty cocktail to experience here is the Sailor Mule, a concoction of ginger beer, lime and spiced rum.
Next on our list would be Hooch in the Wall Street Plaza, considered by many to be the best outdoor bar in Orlando. Happy Hour Monday – Friday is from 4PM to 7PM and features their namesake, Batched Moonshine! That’s right, hooch made with flavors including lemonade and Mom’s Apple Pie. There’s always a new flavor hooch so ask when you get here. Happy hour Moonshines are only $3, or draft / bottle beer for same price.
They offer a yummy menu of food during Happy Hour, all $5. There’s Seared Ahi Tuna, BBQ Chicken Sliders, Chicken Fingers, Pork Sandwich and House Made Hummus or Fried Tofu if you must. If you fill up on the happy hour food and want to stay after that, every night offers special prices to keep you happy, as well as live music on Friday night.
Lastly a truly fun time can be had at Orlando’s Waitiki Bar & Restaurant an outdoors Tiki Bar located on Wall Street. You get to munch out on BBQ Sliders, Chicken Fingers w/ Thai Chili Sauce, Seared Ahi Tuna, or Pork Sandwiches for $5 each. Sip on one or more Bacardi & 3 Olive Cocktails like their Acapulco Breeze or Mango Sour for $4. For our beer drinking readers, Red Stripe or Red Stripe Light for $2.50 is oh what a deal.
These are just a few of the place for your “get away” happy hour, and should give you an idea of what’s available to you. Most of them will get you out of the larger vacation crowds, like the Courtesy Bar, but no matter, they all offer you two things you probably need, cheap drinks and cheap food, so enjoy.
One last thought, “My children are to young to leave alone”. Problem solved. There are tons of baby sitters advertised in Orlando, and many recommended by the hotels themselves. Another option is to use a very popular organization, “Kids Night Out” that offers a service at hotels where they will watch your children and or pets. They actually will bring “age appropriate” entertainment to keep your kids entertained. Guaranteed piece of mind while you go out and play.