Treat yo' self
6 swanky San Antonio happy hour deals for fine dining on a budget
We can all agree — the last paycheck of the month is the worst. You have to spend it on no-fun things like housing, utilities, and credit card bills instead of fancy dinners with your friends. Being an adult is hard. Luckily it’s not without its rewards.
After you take care of business, celebrate by dining at San Antonio's best restaurants for far less than the usual price. At these six happy hours, you’ll leave feeling full — even if your bank account is empty.
Like Scooby Doo and Shaggy or Calvin and Hobbes, the best things come in pairs. That goes double when it comes to this Peruvian-Asian restaurant that gives San Antonio twice the happy hours to love. On Monday-Saturday, slide in between 3-6 pm for creative $5-$6 bites, dollar-off beers, and half-off select wines by the glass. Take a disco nap and do it again on Friday and Saturday from 10 pm-midnight.
You don’t have to dip into your savings account to dine at the Pearl. Grab your bestie and go to chef Steve McHugh’s charming eatery Monday-Saturday between 3-6 pm. Start by building a charcuterie platter out of 16 selections (the whipped pork butter is a must). At first, you might get sticker shock, but even the smaller board is enough to share. Besides, all that is offset by a 50 percent discount on top-notch cocktails like the refreshing rum-based prickly pear punch.
Kick it old-school at this prime steakhouse’s happy hour between 4:30-7 pm Tuesday-Saturday and all day Sunday and Monday. Cocktails like a top-shelf Manhattan and refreshing sangria are $8, and classic dishes like Oysters Rockefeller, escargot, and beef carpaccio are $12. Don’t miss out on the New York Strip or ribeye bites, which give you a filling teaser of the restaurant’s pricier main menu.
No San Antonio happy hour list is complete without listing a great deal on a margarita, and downtown’s Rebelle has a killer one with 100-percent agave silver tequila, lime, and triple sec for only $5. Pair it with $9 bites like a beefy signature burger, a white cheddar and bacon spread, or spicy harissa shrimp. Or chase the South Texas heat away with $3 East Coast oyster shooters (the mangonada with white rum and chamoy is full of San Antonio flavor) or a dozen of the undressed bivalves at $24. All deals are available weekdays between 5-7 pm.
With an elegant French-inspired dining room, cuisine from lauded chef Andrew Weissman, and a stellar wine program, this La Cantera stunner sets the standard for San Antonio fine dining. So it’s only natural that the happy hour would set a high bar, too. Between 4:30-6 pm Tuesday-Friday, sit at the bar to enjoy a curated selection of wines and cocktails like the chipotle tinged Night in Oaxaca while snacking on Prince Edward Island mussels in lemongrass red curry and coconut sauce or gold leaf risotto.
Hotel Emma’s resident restaurant doesn’t have a happy hour, per se, but the affordable bar menu walks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, so we are calling it one anyway. Available daily from 3-5 pm for walk-ins only, the menu includes tasty snacks like a mushroom grilled cheese with Gruyere cheese; lamb meatballs with tomatoes, capers, olives, and Parmesan; and a juicy burger given an unexpected shishito pepper twist.