December 21st is going to be the longest night of the year, and it’s also going to be the Best Night of Your Life. Obviously, a night this epic (or any night, really) has to start with a sweet happy hour, so we've picked the seven best places to and score deals on everything from $1 oysters, to something called cookies alfajores.
Check out the picks below, and make sure to fully map out a perfect evening with our itinerary builder.
Avenue of the Arts South
Weekly $3 draft/shot specials and daily 1/2lb burger (or steak sandwich) "recession" specials are just a few of the reasons this dive-y boozer's been a go-to since the last recession.
William Butler Yeats famously once said, "But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly, and give me 1/2-priced pub eats and $3 micro drafts." Named for great Irish authors, this boozer was happy to oblige him, and you, every day during happy hour.
This place's got white-washed brick walls mixed w/ subway tiles, an heirloom collection of 200 hand-painted oyster plates, an antique milk glass cocktail rail (also, Amtrak's short-lived post-Prohibition slogan), and, most importantly, buck-a-shuck and $3 oyster shooter specials everyday.
Alma de Cuba
Authentic Cuban cocktails? Yup! Not-so-authentic Cuban food? Just check out the Kurobuta Fritas (chorizo sliders), Duck Raspado w/ crispy rice, duck confit, sherry raisins, scallions & pine nuts on top of a pomegranate-marinated duck breast, plus something called "cookies alfajores"... which are presumably nice and Che-wy.
University City/Rittenhouse/Old City
All three similarly laid-back Drinker's establishments offer different specials every day, and a selection of "Always Specials" like $3.50 Yuengling Drafts, $2.75 Narragansett Cans, and $6 Red Bull Bombs.
The Goat’s Beard
This sustainably sourced small-platery serves up a constantly rotating list of specials every day, but what doesn't change is its Whiskey Bible, which's got things like Maker's Mark, though you'll probably be Luke warm to standard stuff once you're versed in spirits like Four Roses Small Batch, and the local Dad's Hat Rye.
Philly's only izakaya (basically Japanese for pub), this boozer's slinging daily specials like $1 yakitori skewers, $1.50 oysters, $3 Sapporo drafts, after a few of which you'll probably end up in one of their private karaoke lounges that're equipped w/ flatscreens, over 4000 songs, and a private call service button.
1. Oyster House1516 Sansom St, Philadelphia
2. Drinker's West3900 Chestnut St, Philadelphia
3. The Bards2013 Walnut St, Philadelphia
4. Locust Rendezvous1415 Locust St, Philadelphia
5. Alma De Cuba1623 Walnut St, Philadelphia
6. The Goat's Beard4201 Main St, Philadelphia
7. Yakitori Boy211 N 11th St, Philadelphia
Drop on by the Oyster House for their famous Buck-a-Shuck happy hours and get shuckin'.
Drinker's West has daily specials on high-lifes and PBRs, but if that doesn't tickle your fancy they have even more specials for every other day of the week, which makes drinking... easy.
Come here for authentic Irish brew, food and of course for warm Irish hospitality. The atmosphere here is casual and lively but not dive-y or too loud, so that you can enjoy a pint of Guinness without the large crowds or rowdy drunk people that typically come with Irish bars.
Locust Rendezvous has been kickin' it since 1989 and offers up some great changing weekly specials for booze. What else could you ask for at a bar?
Alma De Cuba is serving up some great Caribbean and Latin-inspired food in the heart of downtown Philly.
The Goat's Beard features an extensive domestic whiskey/bourbon selection and also caters to craft beer fans by providing a large selection of both draft and cans.
Yakitori boy defines itself as the Japanese version of a pub. If that's the case, the Eastern take on a pub is a sleek and contemporary karaoke bar where the portions are small, the sake is flowing, and the crowd isn't shy, particularly on stage. If you aren't coming to belt out your go-to song, you're probably here for the food, which is served as its prepared and includes chicken wings, crispy fried salmon neck, and a sushi selection with all the basics. Make sure you bring a pack with you, because the belief here is that sharing is caring.