Problem: You want to find a cool happy hour spot in Lubbock with great drink specials and enough room for you and your friends to hang out. Solution: This guide. The variety of spots to choose from runs the gamut. You want to do pickle shots at a pinball-themed restaurant? Done. Tacos for 99 cents to pair with cocktails? Check. Drinking schooners in a sports bar? You can find that in Lubbock, too. Here is your guide to some of the top happy hour spots in Lubbock, Texas—the place where the delicious chilton cocktail was invented.
1. Flippers’s Tavern
On Avenue Q, the new Flippers’s Tavern is Lubbock’s only pinball-themed bar that serves craft beers and creative bratwursts with toppings like crawfish and avocado. It’s also known for its creative happy hours almost every day of the week, including Geeks Who Drink trivia nights. Drink specials include $3 chilton cocktails and pickle shots. Inside, Flippers’s has a one-of-a-kind, kitsch decor: Vintage pinball games have been reimagined as tables in booths, and walls are adorned with 70s cartoon memorabilia. And of course, a pinball bar wouldn’t be complete without pinball games to play. Flippers’s collection includes themed pinball machines featuring Kiss the band, “The Walking Dead” and Tron.
2. Rain Uptown Ristorante
Run by a native Italian chef, Rain Uptown is known in Lubbock for its daily happy hours with specials like Monday half-priced wines, Tuesday $5 sangrias and Russian Thursdays with $5 mule chiltons. For ladies night out, Rain Uptown is a must.
“They have a beautiful lounge, the ambience is perfect, and they usually have local performing artists on the weeknights and the weekends,” says local Renee Davis in her Live Love Lubbock video. “And they have a martini menu that is divine.”
Also divine? The food. Chef Pierre Gabelli, who appearaned on (and won) “Iron Chef” twice, has helped Rain Uptown become one of the best Italian restaurants in the region with dishes like pan-fried scamorza cheese, panzerotti (crepes rolled with spinach and cheese) and veal marsala.
3. The Funky Door Bistro & Wine Room
The Funky Door Bistro & Wine Room, located in southwest Lubbock, is a hip place to hang out with fantastic happy hour specials. Every Thursday, for example, is Martini Madness with $5 drinks. The Funky Door also has Enomatic self-serving wine tasting machines. Guests can dispense one of 48 wine varieties (warm or chilled) in pours of 1, 3 or 6 ounces. Funky Door’s interior features abstract art, metallic booths and modern lighting. During happy hour, be sure to order the cheese fondue in flavors like pepper jack and creamy Gouda.
4. Chimy’s Cerveceria
At Chimy’s Cerveceria near Texas Tech University, every hour seems like a happy hour. It’s an all-day affair Monday and Tuesday and from 4-6 p.m. Wednesday through Friday. Chimy’s has a lot of great drinks, but its menu of margaritas—some named after cars like the “Lexus” and “Cadillac”—is what people remember.
“If we’re going for happy hour, we like to get a plate of nachos and sit in the back in a booth and drink margaritas,” says Lubbock local Taylor Perio in her Live Love Lubbock video.
Other happy hour specials include $2 drafts and 99-cent beef tacos. Inside, the restaurant is loaded with tiki decor and margarita memorabilia, and the outdoor patio has picnic tables and plastic chili lights. Chimy’s is a must-visit spot in Lubbock; in fact it’s kind of famous. Texas country musician Josh Abbott recently put it in a song.
5. Local Bar and Grill
Local Bar and Grill is a laid-back sports bar that’s a popular hangout during Texas Tech football weekends (and almost any day of the week when sports are on). It’s one of the best places to live it up in Lubbock with weekly live music and awesome food and drink specials that change frequently (think $5 pizzas and $3 Fireball shots). The food menu includes pork belly tacos, chicken fried steak, loaded nachos and burgers. Local Bar and Grill is also just a cool place to hang out with a modern Texas interior.
6. Caprock Cafe
Caprock Cafe is a saloon-like restaurant and bar with Southwestern fare and one of Lubbock’s favorite burgers. If you’ve never tried a Rockin’ Rita (Caprock’s version of a margarita paired with an upside-down Corona), you’re missing out. On Monday’s, Caprock’s happy hour special is a $3 domestic schooner. This is the West Texas bar you’ve been looking for, with mounted bison heads, saddles and horseshoes as decor. Lubbock Avalanche-Journal even named Caprock Lubbock’s best place to have a beer. If you’re hungry, the menu has some fun options like Texas Toothpicks (deep-fried strips of onions and jalapenos), down and dirty chicken strips and half-pound buffalo burgers.
This is only a snapshot of all the great places to eat and drink in Lubbock. Read about more of the top spots to grab a burger and a beer on the blog. For more information on all things “food and drink” in the “Hub City,” go to visitlubbock.org.
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