400 S. Baldwin Avenue
Arcadia, CA 91007
Parking: Free Mall Parking
Drink Deals: $2 off Draft Beers, Cocktails, & Wines by the Glass
Food Deals: $2 off Starters & Small Plates
As our readers know, Jennie & I love good Happy Hours of any kind – from mom & pop stops to big old chain restaurants and everything in between. A couple Fridays back, I took advantage of an early dismissal and traveled to the suburbs with Booze, visiting the Santa Anita Mall in Arcadia to hit three Happy Hours of the chain variety – a bona fide Suburban Happy Hour Tour!
Our first stop was the Wood Ranch BBQ & Grill, part of a mid-sized California chain, where we’d lunched several weeks before for $60 w/ tip (that was 2 beers each, a lunch entrée for Booze, an appetizer and half-salad for me). And now you see why I prefer Happy Hour meals to regular meals; our Happy Hour meal was less than half the price of our lunch!
The food during our $60 lunch was delicious though and so we made a mental note to come back for Happy Hour, which… totally delivered! Besides nicely-priced beers ($2 off – so $3-3.50/pint), we had one of the best bartenders in recent memory with fantastic peace-brokering skills as she negotiated a win-win situation with Booze’s onion allergy and my vegan tendencies.
For Booze, we ended up ordering a half-order of the Spinach & Artichoke dip w/ chips for $5.95 ($2 off the $7.95 non-HH pricetag). That came with a complimentary side of salsa (for me) and the bartender added a not-on-the menu side of Guacamole ($2.50) and the promise of additional complimentary chips & salsa, which you bet we took her up on! Everything tasted great and the chips were served warm – so good!
Spinach Artichoke Dip (1/2 size= $5.95 during HH) w/ complimentary salsa and $2.50 side of Guacamole
Waitstaff of the world – I get that many patrons are probably picky beyond belief and often leave shitty tips, but as a regular Happy Hour-goer/swell tipper, I am always pleased when my bartender/server takes that extra minute or two extra to help get me exactly what I want. And hell – (vegan) butter me up right and I don’t even care if you up-sell me! This great bartender didn’t even take advantage of that and instead sold us our 2 beers apiece (Stella & Hef for me, 2 Hef’s for Booze). Applause.
Happy Hour is served at the bar area, which consists of a large oval bar and several tables in the area – the warm wood décor is in line with the wood/manly BBQ theme throughout the entire restaurant with its big, cozy booths, slate floors (although we loved the feminine touch of the lavender scented women’s restroom!). Several TV’s at the bar projected sports games to a not-quite happening Happy Hour scene, but it’s rare to see many people on the earlier side of Happy Hour – let alone a weekday at 4pm in Arcadia.
Not sure this is a great place to meet other Happy Hour folks, but if you’re in the area and want a cheap beer(s) and/or if you’re on your own Santa Anita Happy Hour Tour – we say head to Wood Ranch!
Rating: 4 Martinis