I love it because I feel like I'm getting a deal and saving money (aren't we all?!) And that always occuring, "yeah I'll just have 1 more".
But I hate it because usually this means an oaky Chardonnay or another run of the mill wine (think Kendall Jackson).
Also, most places only offer 1 white and 1 red which really limits the wine lover. Granted, wine bars and higher end places, if they even offer a happy hour, have a much wider and more palatable selection, even during happy hour.
(Maybe I'm just a little cynical now that I'm out in the burbs, trying to find a place with decent wine)
I get that sports bars, dive bars and the like aren't going to have a Gigondas by the glass but there are some great options that are on the cheaper end to highlight. Wine is a fast-growing "hobby" and more and more people are becoming interested in more than just Chardonnay and Cab Sauv.
Granted, not all places have chosen this route. Most recently, I visited The Coupe in Columbia Heights for the DC Food Blogger Happy Hour (yeah, it's a thing). They have great happy hour specials including 50 cent bites and $5 wines. Again, only 1 white and 1 red.
My first question: "What is the happy hour white?" Expecting a New World, fruit forward, possibly an oak bomb; she handed me the bottle.
It was a vin de pays from Cotes de Gascogne. Hmmm....wasn't expecting that! Especially in a 24/7, wi-fi haven, "No Corporate Coffee No Matching Silverware" place, as they describe it.
"I'll take that!"
Now, this wine isn't one to go writing home about but it's definitely a great value wine and something different to offer patrons.
There are hundreds of options for great value, happy-hour-worthy but off-the-beaten-path wines, New and Old World alike. Having been on the wine bar side (and an accountant), I understand the cost and financial impact of even having a happy hour.
I'm hoping to see more diversity as customers learn about wine and want to expand their palates,
at happy hour or not.