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In lieu of happy hours...

Posted by Rachel Kossman  January 4, 2012 07:04 PM

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For those of you of age who have been living in Boston for long enough, you surely realize we have strange alcohol laws that prohibit happy hour promotions and discounted liquor sales. The law dates back to 1984 (no, not 1884) and was imposed in an attempt to limit drunk driving.

While I appreciate the thought, as an avid MBTA rider who does not own a car (and a young professional on a very minimal salary) I find this law totally frustrating, especially since those irresponsible enough to drink and drive will most likely get behind the wheel while under the influence regardless of whether the booze is cheap or not.

I digress. The point is that in the absence of traditional happy hours, many Boston restaurants have instated great appetizer deals during after work hours. Cheap food and full priced drinks is better than nothin', right?

ms3.JPGMcCormick & Schmick's, a well known seafood chain in US with Boston locations on Columbus Ave. and in Faneuil Hall, has one of the best discounted appetizer menus I've found.

For just $2 during their three hour "social hour," you can order bruschetta, cheese quesadillas, spinach dip, or, as pictured, a california crab roll (a random selection I know). Oysters, popcorn shrimp, mac & cheese, and fried calamari, along with a handful of other items, are also on the menu. The most expensive item is just $5. Can you say score?

ms2.JPGMeg and I went to the 360 theater showing of Peter Pan last month, and grabbed a quick dinner during social hour before the show. She got the best deal on the menu -- a $3 cheeseburger & fries. I got the sushi and mozzarella sticks (yes, a random combination, I ordered on a whim) but I've had quite a few of the options and they're all great - not gourmet, and pretty standard bar food, but an awesome deal nonetheless. Our bill -- dinner for the two of us -- came to just $9.84 without our drinks.

If your office is downtown and you haven't checked this place out definitely make plans to grab some grub and drinks with coworkers one evening. The social hour menu is available Monday through Friday between 3:30 PM and 6:30 PM and again between 9:30 PM and 10:30 PM Monday through Thursday.

There are a ton of places across the city that offer discounted appetizer "happy hours" -- have a favorite? Comment and let me know!

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

About the author

Rachel Kossman is a California girl and New England transplant who graduated from Northeastern University in 2011. She has a penchant for discovering new restaurants and bars, devouring Mexican food, More »

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