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7 Best Happy Hours in Rochester

group of friends drinking beer at happy hour spot in Rochester

When friends and coworkers get together to unwind and enjoy great discounts on drinks and appetizers, Rochester’s social scene really takes off. We’re out to find the best places to go right now in this vibrant city, from classy lounges to cozy neighborhood bars. Whether you’re craving craft cocktails, local brews, or a glass of wine paired with delectable bites, Rochester’s happy hours have something for everyone. Join us as we explore the city’s lively after-work culture, where the ambiance is relaxed, the conversations flow freely, and the discounts make every sip and bite even more enjoyable. Discover the perfect place to kick back and savor those fleeting hours of happiness in the Flower City.


Next Door by Wegmans

Next Door by Wegmans Rochester
Source: Instagram

You’ll find Next Door by Wegmans southeast of Rochester’s city center. While it’s a little off the beaten path if you stay downtown, you can’t miss popping in here for their happy hour. This upscale restaurant is decorated beautifully, but it also has a very calming and casual feel. Next Door by Wegmans is a delicious sushi spot, and they’re known for their happy hour deals. Happy hour runs every Tuesday through Friday from 5:00 pm until 6:00 pm. They’re known for having select cocktails and wine for $8. My favorite part is the much more affordable sushi rolls to pair with my sake. 


Nosh

47 Russell St, Rochester, NY 14607
585-445-8700
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Nosh Rochester
Source: Instagram

One of my favorite spots in Rochester for fantastic drink deals is Nosh. This trendy spot only minutes from downtown embraces the industrial buildings around it and is one of the best places to bond with friends over great food and drinks in Rochester. The atmosphere is relaxed, but you’ll still feel like you’re at one of the finest spots in town. When I was in Rochester, I made it a point to pop into Nosh for their happy hour. While this restaurant is typically a more posh spot, you can enjoy their happy hour specials featuring $6 beers from Tuesday to Thursday, 4-6 pm. They have a handful of uniquely crafted recipes, but my favorite was the Castro Sting, made with rum, cinnamon, oregano demerara, and lime.


Dorado

690 Park Ave, Rochester, NY 14607
585-244-8560
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Dorado Rochester
Source: Instagram

Located in Park Avenue, minutes from downtown, is one of the best restaurants and bars, Dorado. This delicious spot is known for having one of the largest collections of agave spirits in Rochester. While the restaurant is pretty small, the atmosphere is cozy and welcoming. Dorado is the best happy hour in Rochester for those on a budget. Their happy hour runs Monday through Friday from 3:00 pm until 6:00 pm. There’s $3 beer and my favorite, $7 house and classic margaritas. Their food isn’t on happy hour, but they have plenty of small plates to snack on while sipping on a cold beer or margarita. 

See also  9 Best Outdoor Dining in Rochester

Grappa Italian Nouveau

30 Celebration Dr, Rochester, NY 14620
585-445-5770
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Grappa Italian Nouveau Rochester
Source: Instagram

One of the best Rochester happy hour spots is at Grappa Italian Nouveau. This Italian restaurant is south of downtown, only minutes from the University of Rochester. The restaurant is very modern but has that cozy Italian restaurant atmosphere. To take full advantage of Grappa’s happy hour, you’ll want to get there right at 5:00 pm from Tuesday to Saturday. Since their happy hour is only for one hour, it’s the best way to drink affordable wine, beer, and cocktails. I loved the $6 wine by the glass and the $7 small plates to share with my friends. 


The Daily Refresher

293 Alexander St, Rochester, NY 14607
585-360-4627
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The Daily Refresher Rochester
Source: Instagram

When you visit The Daily Refresher, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time. This bar pays homage to the bars of years past by featuring old-timey furniture and ambiance. It’s one of the most unique spots I’ve ever visited and a must-see if you’re ever in Rochester. It’s right downtown and easy to get to from wherever you’re staying in the city. There’s a craft kitchen and regular food truck on-premises and a collection of over 300 whiskeys, but happy hour is where this spot shines. Their three-hour happy hour is a favorite amongst locals and visitors. They have $5 draft beers, and you can get 1/2 off any rotating selection of whiskey every Wednesday. I loved their spiced pina colada, but they change regularly.


Side Bar

242 South Ave, Rochester, NY 14604
585-454-2477
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Side Bar Rochester
Source: Instagram

You’ll find Side Bar downtown, near Washington Square Park. The best way to describe Side Bar’s atmosphere is to think of a modern dive bar. It’s dark and cozy with a traditional wooden bar, but the rest of the decor is more art deco and contemporary. This American and Caribbean fusion restaurant and bar have one of the best happy hours. It may even be the longest happy hour in town, running from 12:00 pm until 7:00 pm everyday. Even if you’re only popping in for one drink, you have to try their Side Bar Side Car. The drink is made with Hennessy, fresh lemon, lemon juice, and a secret sweetener. 


The Old Stone Tavern

758 South Ave, Rochester, NY 14620
585-448-1148
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The Old Stone Tavern Rochester
Source: Instagram

To visit The Old Stone Tavern, you’ll need to head to the South Wedge neighborhood of Rochester. This restaurant and bar takes pride in being the neighborhood bar that has a way of bringing everyone together. There are several TVs, bar games, and plenty of space to have a great conversation. The Old Stone Tavern’s happy hour runs every day from 4:00 pm until 7:00 pm. Their happy hour consists of $1 off all draft beer. While this may not seem like a significant happy hour special, their draft beer list is extensive and the best spot for beer lovers. 

See also  23 Best Restaurants in Rochester

Why Trust Us?

When it comes to local restaurant recommendations, we pride ourselves on being a reliable and trustworthy resource. Our suggestions are not just based on our personal experiences, ensuring a more authentic and well-rounded perspective, but also on extensive online research. We diligently searched the internet and reviewed 5 credible sites and blogs, including Blog.checkle.com and Yellowpages.com. 

We compiled all the findings in one location and sorted them by the frequency of mentions to ensure you receive top-notch recommendations. We strive to present you with a curated list of establishments that truly stand out, allowing you to enjoy the best dining experiences possible. 

Interested in the sources we consulted? Check out the list of all 5 sites we referenced below this paragraph, offering transparency and an opportunity for our readers to explore further. Our commitment is to deliver trustworthy and unparalleled recommendations, helping you make informed decisions on your culinary journeys.

https://www.downtownrochestermn.com/post/top-happy-hours
https://www.ultimatehappyhours.com/location/rochester/
http://thehappyhourfinder.com/us_ny/rochester-4/
https://blog.checkle.com/best-happy-hours-in-rochester/
https://www.yellowpages.com/rochester-ny/happy-hour-bars

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Written by Brian Nagele

Brian attended West Virginia University, then started his career in the IT industry before following his passion for marketing and hospitality. He has over 20 years experience in the restaurant and bar industry.

As a former restaurant owner, he knows about running a food business and loves to eat and enjoy cocktails on a regular basis. He constantly travels to new cities tasting and reviewing the most popular spots.

Follow him on LinkedIn, Instagram, Quora, Google Guide and Facebook.