Kick off your autumn with a happy hour excursion to one of these classic Valley restaurants.

Timeless Deals

Written by Shelby Moore Category: Happy Hour Issue: October 2016
Group Free
Bleu at Vincent’s
3930 E. Camelback Rd., Phoenix
Nestled next to Vincent’s Market Bistro, Bleu has the blues – and by that, we mean blue walls, plush blue booth seating and blue cloth napkins. During happy hour, blues fade to “bites,” bubbles and blancs, not to mention rosés and rouges – all offered at half-price. The tart and effervescent Crémant de Bourgogne rosé ($7.50) should not be missed at the price, especially with a pinch of truffle oil shoestring fries ($5) in the other hand, and some light-as-air puff pastries – the gruyère gougères – rolling around on the plate in front of you. Cocktails are full-priced, but order a Kir Royale ($10) instead, a French concoction in which a vein of blackberry liqueur lurks underneath Champagne. Complement it with a funky, greasy blue cheese croque monsieur ($6). 4-6:30 p.m. Tu-F
2611 N. Central Ave., Phoenix
Subject of a 2016 independent film, Durant’s Never Closes, the august steakhouse does, in fact, shut off the lights around 10 p.m. most nights. For happy hour, you’ll have to get there by 6 p.m. – and that’s a very sad thing, considering the surreal grazing bargains when the prices are slashed. Enjoy two iterations of Durant’s famed slider – the pastrami ($2.95), with atomic mustard and sauerkraut; and the all-American bar buns ($2.95) – but you’ll regret not ordering the sultry steamed mussels ($10.50), served in a wide bowl which overflows with shells cooked in white wine and tomato broth. You’ll hover over it like a cat sniffing out goldfish – if not for the divine aroma, then merely to see it. (Durant’s is movie-theater-dark.) Beverages are priced regularly – manageable, with the grub priced so fairly. Spring for an Anchor Steam lager. It pairs nicely with anything, but especially the seafood. 3-6 p.m. M-Su
House of Tricks
114 E Seventh St., Tempe
It’s simple: cheese boards are for your house guests, but the artisan cheese plate ($15) – with candied nuts, dijon mustard from Sierra Nevada Brewing Company and desert honey – is for the happy hour guests at House of Tricks, that beloved bastion of Tempe fine dining. The sticker price isn’t bargain-y, but it’s a massive plate, brimming with – on one occasion – gooey Brie, goats milk Gouda from the Netherlands, and creamy black pepper rustico from the Roman countryside, to name just a few. Start there, but swing by the refined, classic spinach and roasted green chile artichoke dip ($9), and finish with some chile-spiced lamb meatballs ($10), aided by cool feta and radish. The drink prices dip by a dollar – anything helps, right? – and the Paul’s Pimm ($9) delivers refreshment and enough zip to cut through your cheese habit. 4-6 p.m. M-Sa