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The Ultimate Guide to San Diego Happy Hour

Where to find all of the greatest drink deals in the city.

America’s Finest City offers up surf, sun, and fun. People visit from around the world to enjoy San Diego’s incredible attractions such as the San Diego Zoo, the Air and Space Museum, stunning beaches, winning sports teams, and much more.

friends during happy hour at san diego california bar

Whether you’re a local San Diegan or just visiting, you’ll find tons of bars packed with cool vibes, stylish décor, and great deals. After all, why pay full price when you can save big by ordering during happy hour?

I visited some of the hottest places in the city and compiled a list of the best happy hours in San Diego. I took a look at the type of bar, its signature drinks, the specific deals offered – and of course the experience! No matter what you like to drink, here are the best places to save on beer, wine, cocktails, and more while having a great time!

Best Happy Hour in San Diego

  1. UNION Kitchen & Tap Gaslamp
  2. Monello
  3. The Rabbit Hole
  4. Zinqué – San Diego
  5. Hidden Craft SD
  6. Wet Stone Wine Bar & Cafe
  7. Luce Bar & Kitchen
  8. BAR by RED DOOR
  9. The Whiskey House
  10. Las Hadas Bar and Grill
  11. The Local Eatery & Drinking Hole
  12. barleymash
  13. Juan Tequila Bar & Restaurant
  14. Taste & Thirst
  15. GARAGE Kitchen + Bar
  16. Yard House
  17. Rustic Root
  18. Bootlegger
  19. Cafe Sevilla of San Diego

UNION Kitchen & Tap Gaslamp

333 Fifth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-795-9463
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If you’re a California native, you might be familiar with the original Union Kitchen and Tap, located in Encinitas.

Their Gaslamp District location is on 5th Avenue between K Street and J Street. It’s right next door to Café Sevilla, another of my faves in town. Union Kitchen and Tap is a cozy, low-key bar and restaurant with brick walls, wood furnishings, and both indoor and outdoor seating.

Union Kitchen’s happy hour is every weekday from 4 pm until 6 pm. All beers, including craft beers, are just $6. Call drinks are also $6, while signature cocktails are $12. They also have a few shared plate options for $12, such as dry-rubbed wings and bacon mac and cheese.


Monello

750 W Fir St, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-501-0030
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Monello is one of my favorite Italian restaurants in Harborview. It’s just a few blocks north of the USS Midway at the intersection of West Fir Street and Kettner Boulevard. You’ll feel at home right as you walk in, thanks to the restaurant’s soft lighting, wood tables, and a rectangular bar.

They have an Italian Happy Hour, known as an Aperitivo, every Tuesday through Friday from 3 pm until 5 pm. Every cocktail, beer, or glass of wine your order includes complimentary appetizers (selection varies).

They also have a variety of Italian Classics, such as Godfathers and Bellinis, as well as signature drinks such as the Espresso Martini.


The Rabbit Hole

3377 Adams Ave, San Diego, CA 92116
Phone: 619-255-4653
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Jump on over to The Rabbit Hole! It’s between the Adams North and Normal Heights neighborhoods along Adams Avenue between Felton Street and 34th Street. It’s a hip, comfortable place with cushioned booths, long tables, funky murals, and lots of live music.

Happy hour runs from 5 pm until 7 pm every Monday through Friday. That’s right – this is a great place to go for Friday night happy hour!

During happy hour, they offer $6 draft beers and house wines plus $7 cocktails, $6 well drinks, and 50% off various appetizers. If it’s a nice day, I recommend enjoying your drinks on their back patio.


Zinqué – San Diego

2101 Kettner Blvd, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-915-6172
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Zinque serves up fresh, contemporary seafood, salads, and sandwiches in an open, friendly atmosphere perfect for drinking and dining with friends.

They’re due east from the Coast Guard Air Station San Diego, on Kettner Boulevard between West Ivy Street and West Hawthorn Street.

Their happy hour includes specials on drinks and appetizers. You get $5 off all craft and signature cocktails, $4 off all glasses of wine, and $2 off every beer in the place. While they offer a wide selection of tasty apps, I recommend the roasted mini sausages and the mini quiche bites.


Hidden Craft SD

600 W Broadway Ste 130, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-782-9113
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Despite what their name implies, Hidden Craft DS is easy to find. They’re east of the Broadway Pier on West Broadway between India Street and Kettner Boulevard. It’s across the street from the SDSU Downtown Gallery.

This cozy and contemporary joint is all about beer. They have a huge selection of beers, including sours, darks, wheats, and more. You can even serve yourself at the “Wall of Beer Fame,” with over 30 beers on tap. 


Wet Stone Wine Bar & Cafe

1927 4th Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-255-2856
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Wet Stone is a stylish and upscale restaurant serving South American cuisine and seafood dishes. They’re right across the street from the San Diego Air and Space Museum on 4th Avenue between Fir Street and Grape Street. I recommend this cozy spot for dates or hanging out with a small group of friends.

Aside from the food, they have a robust selection of cocktails, beer, and wine. Their happy hour runs from Tuesday through Saturday from 5 pm until 6 pm, and then on Sunday from 4 pm until 9 pm.

Specials include wine for $7 a glass or $25 a bottle. They also have $2 off all beers and a $12 specialty drink called the House Blind Flight Trio.


Luce Bar & Kitchen

1959 Morena Blvd, San Diego, CA 92110
Phone: 619-275-0321
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Luce is right up the street from the San Diego Boot Camp and the San Diego Mission Bay Resort. You’ll find it on Morena Boulevard at the intersection of Ashton Street. It’s a welcoming tavern with soft lighting, comfy seats, and a relaxing, charming atmosphere.

Their menu features comfort foods such as wood-fired pizza, burgers, and shareable appetizers.

Their beer and wine list is robust and intriguing, with a vast selection of wines from California, Europe, and South America. Plus, they offer both domestic and international craft brews. Happy hour runs from 3 pm until 5 pm every Sunday through Friday and features discounts on most beverages.


BAR by the RED DOOR

729 W Washington St, San Diego, CA 92103
Phone: 619-295-6000

The Bar By The Red Door serves contemporary Italian food in a bright, inviting environment. You’ll find the restaurant a few blocks east of Mission Hills Pioneer Park at West Washington Street and Falcon Street.

They have two different happy hours. Bar By the Red Door has a happy hour from 3 pm to 5 pm every day, while the Red Door (the attached restaurant) has a happy hour from 5 pm to 6 pm every Wednesday through Sunday. Both places serve cocktails, wine, and draft beer.


The Whiskey House

420 Third Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-546-6289
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If you’re in the mood for whisky, check out The Whiskey House, located one block east of Children’s Park at the corner of J Street and 3rd Avenue. It’s a sophisticated but unpretentious bar and restaurant with soft lighting, a wooden bar, and shelves stocked with whiskey bottles from around the world.

Their Happy Hour runs every day (including weekends!) from 4 pm to 7 pm. Deals include $6 cocktails, $6 glasses of wine, reduced beer prices, and the option to add a shot of house whiskey to any beer for just a buck.

They also have happy hour food, including appetizers like French fries and soup. You can also opt for full meals such as their TWH burger and salmon filet.


Las Hadas Bar and Grill

558 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-232-1720
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When you’re hungry for Mexican food, Las Hadas is where you should go. They’re on 4th Avenue and Market Street, just one block north of the Horton Grand Hotel. They’re a family-owned restaurant helmed by Chef Alan Gomez.

They have a large selection of libations, including many Mexican classics such as margaritas, sangria, house Palomas, and more.

Stop by early in the week for Margarita Mondays, where all Cazadores margaritas are half off, or Taco “Tuuuesday’s,” where tacos are just $3 and $4. 


The Local Eatery & Drinking Hole

1065 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-231-4447
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The name of this bar/restaurant reflects their commitment to locally-sourced beers, local craft brews, and even local musicians!

They’re just up the street from Horton Plaza Park on 4th Avenue near the Broadway intersection. With brick walls and wood tables, the place has a rustic, inviting style that’s perfect for hanging out and enjoying a few cold ones.

Happy hour is every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 3 pm until 6 pm. During happy hour, all apps are $5 off, and all beers, wines, and wells are $2 off. They also have different daily specials and events such as Trivia Night (with prizes).


barleymash

600 Fifth Ave #6916, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-255-7373
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Barleymash is one of my favorite spots to go if I’m introducing a friend to the San Diego restaurant scene.

It’s a hip, fun restaurant found right in the middle of the city’s Gaslamp District at the corner of 5th Avenue and Market Street. Both locals and tourists love the large tables, sunny atmosphere, and commitment to locally-sourced food and drink.

The beer selection is extensive, varied, and constantly changing. They have 30 beers on tap at any time, including microbrews from around the country, as well as classic beers like Coors Light and Bud Light.

They also have a huge selection of beer in cans. If you’re looking for a cocktail, try out Ginger’s, the downstairs lounge, where the party gets going late into the night.


Juan Tequila Bar & Restaurant

535 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-458-9455
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The Juan Tequila Bar and Restaurant is one of my favorite places to go when I have something to celebrate!

It’s beautiful, vibrant, and welcoming with leather furniture, marble tables, soft light, and chandeliers. They’re next door to the Gaslamp Museum and Ghosts and Graveyards on 4th Street between Island Avenue and Market Street.

Their Happy Hour menu is a little different as it focuses on food. Every Tuesday through Sunday, from 5 pm until 7 pm, you can get sushi rolls for $10 or $3 mini street tacos. Of course, they also have a wide selection of great drinks, including hand-crafted margaritas and other 20 types of tequila.


Taste & Thirst

715 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-955-5995
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Taste and Thirst is another one of my favorite spots in the Gaslamp District. They’re on 4th Avenue near G Street, just a block north of the Great Room Escape San Diego. They’re a fun, casual bar and grill that serves contemporary takes on classic favorites like burgers, wings, and quesadillas. In my opinion, it’s one of the best places to hang out with friends.

They have one of the best happy hours in San Diego! Every day from 3 pm until 8 pm, all drinks and beers are half-off.

Food specials include $1 off burgers, $2 off wings, and $3 off quesadillas. But that’s the only happy hour of the day. From 8 pm until midnight, you can get several top-shelf drinks for $7 each plus $9 Long Islands, $30 pitchers, and more.


GARAGE Kitchen + Bar

655 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-231-6700
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If you’re a fan of local music, I recommend checking out GARAGE. They’re a casual, hip bar/restaurant with a rocker vibe and a dedication to American food, craft beers, freshly-made cocktails, and good times.

You’ll find this local favorite on 4th Avenue between Market Street and G Street. The place is right across the street from the Lions Club of San Diego and the Horton House.

I love the simplicity of their happy hour. From 4 pm until 6 pm every Tuesday through Sunday, all drinks are 51% off (except top-shelf and specialty drinks). Plus, all small plates are $3 off. They have over 15 draft beers plus a solid selection of domestic and imported bottles. You can even order your brew in a 34-ounce stein!


Yard House

1640 Camino Del Rio N Ste 157, San Diego, CA 92108
Phone: 619-574-0468
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You’ll find Yard House restaurants across the country, but I’ve found their San Diego location offers more of a hometown feel than most.

It’s a comfortable and family-friendly place with all-American dishes and over 100 beers on tap. The Yard House is inside the Mission Valley Mall, along Camino del Rio North and I-8. It’s between the Haunted Hotel and the 24 Hour Fitness.

Happy hour can get hopping. The first happy hour runs Monday through Friday from 3 pm until 6 pm. It features $2 beer, wine, and cocktails along with half-off over 15 apps. If you’re ready to party, all half-yards of beer are $4 off.

They also have a Late Night Happy Hour from 10 pm until close on Sunday through Thursday with the same drink specials.


Rustic Root

535 Fifth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-232-1747
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Rustic Root is a cool, casual bar and restaurant with a locally-famous rooftop patio and a reputation for good times. They’re just a few blocks inland on 5th Avenue near Market Street, right up the street from the Hard Rock Hotel San Diego.

While they have a great selection of beer, wine, and classic cocktails, I recommend their original creations. Dr. Jerry’s Royal Flush is a personal favorite.

It has whisky, cherry-vanilla syrup, cherry bitters, and lemon walnut. Other superb options include the Army Captain, Rustic Old Fashioned, and The Sun Also Rises.


Bootlegger

804 Market St, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-794-2668
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It’s always a fun time to stop by Bootlegger! During the day, it’s a chill spot to grab a cold brew or enjoy brunch with bottomless mimosas.

The pace picks up quite a bit at night, and Bootlegger becomes one of San Diego’s hottest spots, with local DJs and more. It’s in the Gaslamp Quarter at the corner of 8th Avenue and Market Street.

They have over 42 draft beers, including regularly-updated featured selections. Happy hour is on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 3 pm until 7 pm. You can order pints and well drinks for $6, and all craft cocktails are $5 off. They also have Sunday Funday Game Specials, a Bubbly Brunch on Sunday, and BYOB (Build Your Own Burger) deals on Thursday.


Cafe Sevilla of San Diego

353 Fifth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-233-5979
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Suppose you’re in San Diego to sightsee. In that case, I recommend Café Sevilla, as it’s conveniently located in the Gaslamp District near major attractions such as Petco Park, the downtown convention center, and many major museums.

You’ll find them just west of the Fit Athletic Club on 5th Avenue and J Street. They’re masters of authentic but accessible Spanish cuisine, featuring meat, seafood, and paella.

Happy hour runs from Sunday through Friday from 4:30 pm until 6:30 pm. They offer $5 beers (both bottled and draft), $5 glasses of wine, and $7 sangrias. Their Tapas Bar Live features dancing, live music, and late-night dining – just like you’ll find in Spain.


Final Thoughts

San Diego is home to many fantastic bars and restaurants – and you don’t have to break the bank to have a good time. Happy hour specials are easily found throughout town, so you can save big on your drink of choice, whether it’s beer, wine, or cocktails.

If you happen to overindulge and stay out a little later than you planned, a delicious breakfast will help you get ready for a new day. Check out my guide to some awesome breakfast restaurants in San Diego for even more.  

Did I overlook one of your favorite happy hours in the city? Leave a comment below letting me know your choice for the best happy hour in San Diego, and I’ll check it out!

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Written by Ryan F.

Ryan is a local foodie who enjoys checking out the area's restaurant scene every chance he can. Ryan also enjoys traveling and checking out local eateries in every city he visits.