3603 E. Indian School Rd.
Here are three reasons Crudo, hidden in an Arcadia alleyway, is one of the best happy hour hangs in town: $3 craft beers, $5 wines and $7 classic cocktails. A fourth: snacks with cult followings, like the decadent truffled bacon popcorn ($5) and legendary crispy pig ears ($5), fried and piled atop a Fresno chile vinaigrette. Both make fine companions for the drinks, which generously remain on happy hour bargain status until the wee hour of 7 p.m. (No need for rush hour and happy hour to step on each other’s toes, right?) Crudo offers nearly 20 perfectly executed classic cocktails, so don’t choose wisely, choose often. We suggest the caipirinha (cachaça, lime, sugar cane syrup), or perhaps something stiff and dapper, like a Negroni made with Monopolowa, a complex, citrus-forward gin from Vienna. Pro tip: Crudo also has an amazing polenta board for happy hour on Wednesdays. 5-7 p.m. Tu-Sa
Market Street Kitchen
20825 N. Pima Rd., Scottsdale
The farther north the Valley stretches, the less likely you are to elbow up in front of a great cocktail, never mind a well-stocked bar. Located in deepest, darkest North Scottsdale, Market Street Kitchen breaks the mold with themed cocktail lists that change seasonally, and a happy hour that doesn’t sacrifice quality. The pub also boasts seven classic cocktails at $7 each, including a stalwart Paloma (tequila, lime, grapefruit soda). Our recommendation: the Aviation, that legendary liquid mosaic combining floral crème de violette liqueur with gin, cherry liqueur and lemon juice, shaken to chilly perfection. You’ll want to snack the afternoon away on Market’s savory, crunchy pork chicharrones ($5), dusted with blue cheese powder and served alongside Sriracha-spiked ranch dip, or crispy fried green tomatoes ($9), firm to the fork, served with tiny shrimp and a slightly chunky house hot sauce. 3-6 p.m. M-Su
85 W. Boston St., Chandler
Downtown Chandler is undoubtedly blessed as a craft cocktail destination. Besides Brandon Casey’s The Ostrich, you’ll find The Brickyard, with a bar top as long as the restaurant itself. They really, really want you to drink, and there’s no better time than happy hour, when seven classic cocktails live large at diminished prices ($7). Start light with a Boston Sour, a whiskey sour shaken with egg white, yielding a fluffy, velvety texture; or an Old Cuban, lime-y and rum-y like a mojito, but served up with a splash of Champagne. Or you can cut to the chase with James Bond’s second-favorite drink, the Vesper. Stay fueled with bite-size shishito peppers topped with sesame seeds and candied ginger ($6) and pork “bahn mi” [sic] tacos loaded with pickled carrots, slivered jalapeño and cilantro crema ($9). 3-6 p.m. Tu-Su
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