Fort Lauderdale has come a long way since it was merely a mecca for college kids ordering tequila shot specials on Spring Break. The city’s burgeoning food and beverage scene is generating much well-deserved attention and drawing in a varied crowd. Just check out these happy hour venues, which proves that the city knows how to dole out some serious fun.Read More
Fort Lauderdale’s 12 Best Happy Hour Spots
Where to drink on the cheap in the 954
1. Even Keel Fish & Oyster
Many notable chefs blossomed under the tutelage of chef Dean Max while at Ocean 3030 restaurant. Now Max is back with the opening of Even Keel, where seafood, once again, takes center stage. Head to the restaurant’s patio or bar for happy hour and dine on discounted wood-oven roasted oysters, $2 oysters, white clam pizza ($9.5), smoked local fish dip ($8) and wahoo poke ($10). Wines, beers, and cocktails are half-off as well. Available Tuesday through Friday from 4 to 6 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 3 to 6 p.m.
2. Mai-Kai Restaurant and Polynesian Show
This Polynesian-themed landmark has been serving up tropical tiki drinks since 1956. The Molokai Bar, outfitted to look like a turn-of-the-century seaport saloon, features 51 specialty drinks, wine and beer, all served to patrons by lovely maidens. There’s a daily happy hour from opening until 7 p.m. that includes 50 percent off on all appetizers and almost every alcoholic beverage — though guests will have to pay full price for the mystery drink.
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3. Shooters Waterfront
Recently revamped and boasting three cocktail bars plus an outdoor lounge with views of Fort Lauderdale’s Intercostal, Shooters runs its happy hour from Monday through Friday from 4 to 7 p.m., serving as a perfect spot to watch the sunset. Guests receive 50 percent off all drinks and appetizers like the crunchy coconut shrimp and chicken pesto flatbread. Take in the ocean’s breeze and watch the sunset while sipping on a Dockside Margarita or a Strawberry Coconut Lemonade for a full South Florida experience.
4. Cooper’s Hawk
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304
The Illinois-based eatery opened its latest Florida location at the upscale Galleria Mall where wine aficionados can enjoy happy hour Monday through Friday from 3 to 6 p.m. with deals like $6 wines by the glass and mules, margaritas and cosmopolitans for $8. Pair that with apps like Asian pork belly tostadas and crispy Brussel sprouts with cashews, mint, sweet Thai chili, and sesame-sriracha aioli.
5. American Icon Brewery Kitchen & Taproom
Located in Flagler Village, a former warehouse district reinvented into a lively downtown destination, its happy hour features half-priced American Icon craft beer as well as all wines by the glass and premium drinks. Come hungry for its $8 bites like the power plant nachos and pulled pork sliders made with house made Diesel Plant Pale Ale barbecue sauce. Available Monday through Friday from 3 to 7 p.m. and nightly from 10 p.m. to close.
6. El Vez Fort Lauderdale
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304
Sip half-priced margaritas at this stylish beachfront Mexican created by restauranteur Stephen Starr. There’s also plenty of draft beers and wines to choose from, all of which go well with carnitas tacos, chicken quesadillas, smoked red snapper tostadas and its addictive chips and salsa. Happy Hour runs Monday through Friday from 4 to 6 p.m. There’s also and extended Happy Hour every Friday (from 4 to 7 p.m.) which runs until September 27, offering additional specials including $8 ceviches, $7 Espolón Classic Margarita and $4 Corona cans.
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7. The Dalmar Hotel
This stylish hotel newcomer offers several options when it comes to happy hour. For classic cocktails, grab a seat at the handsome bar of The Terrace Grill and sip favorites like negronis and mint juleps for $10 while munching on $6 bar bites like deviled eggs, candied bacon and confit chicken drumsticks. For that postcard-perfect sunset, head to the Instagram-friendly sixth floor Lobby Bar, or step outside to the wrap-around landscaped sky deck with downtown views and settle in at Sip N’ Dip, the property’s relaxing pool bar. The Terrace Grill’s Happy Hour runs from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Lobby Bar and Sip N’Dip Happy Hour runs weekdays from 5 to 7 p.m.
8. The Wilder
This handsome bar and lounge is inspired by hotels from LA and Monaco combined with Old Florida flare. Head to patio for classic al fresco moments, slide into the sultry cocktail bar where glam and chic meet, or roam freely in the Great Room equipped with its own bar. Cleverly creative cocktails are available at each location with whimsical names like the Bobby in the Lobby made with caraway-infused gin, and the Martini Sucio made with manchego-infused vodka and serrano-stuffed olives served in a black-truffle salt rimmed glass. Happy hour runs from Tuesday to Friday 4 to 7 p.m. offering half-off bites, beer and wine, $8 specialty cocktails and $5 margaritas, Old Fashioneds, and Moscow Mules.
9. American Social
Head to this Las Olas staple for happy hour and enjoy half-off on select drinks, beers, and wines as well as $6 pretzel bites, chicken quesadillas, tacos and burgers. It also offers a selection of cocktails at $4, $5, $6, and $8, in addition to $4 house margaritas, wines, and draft beers Monday through Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. and Sunday through Wednesday from 11 p.m. to close.
10. Louie Bossi's Ristorante Bar Pizzeria
A seat at the bar of this bustling Italian favorite during happy hour guarantees half off one of its Neapolitan pies. Fungi Misti, wild mushroom, smoked bufala mozzarella, parmigiano reggiano, and truffle oil are a couple of the numerous options. Pair one of the pizza pies with a cocktail that’s $2 off like fresh pineapple margaritas, aperol slushy, or grilled fruit sangria. Available daily at the bar from 4 to 7 p.m.
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11. Bo's Beach
Former Miami Dolphins player Kim Bokamper serves as one of the four partners in this easy-going restaurant and bar. The oceanfront spot offers beachy cocktails like strawberry margaritas and rum punch, while guests can dine on crab cakes, clam and bacon pizza, and Caribbean Spice burgers. Happy Hour runs Monday through Friday from 5 to 7 p.m. and offers $2 off all drinks.
12. Whiskey Neat
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316
Whiskey Neat aims to be the neighborhood cocktail lounge, which, true to its name, offers an impressive 230 plus varieties of whiskey. Patrons are treated to a cocktail list that offers more than 60 varieties of high-end wines, locally crafted brews, as well as complimentary tapas like shrimp shooters and deviled eggs with each round of drinks. Happy hour runs from 5 to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday.