Welcome to the sun-soaked coastal city of San Diego, where the warm weather, stunning beaches, and vibrant nightlife come together to create the perfect setting for a memorable happy hour experience. San Diego is not only renowned for its laid-back, Southern California charm but also for its fantastic happy hour offerings. In this guide, we’ll take you on a journey through the Best Happy Hour Spots in San Diego, revealing the hidden gems and well-known hotspots that locals and visitors alike flock to for a dose of liquid sunshine and delectable bites. From oceanfront bars with spectacular sunset views to cozy neighborhood hangouts offering irresistible drink specials, San Diego’s happy hours cater to every taste and budget. Whether you’re a craft beer enthusiast, a wine aficionado, or a lover of creative cocktails, these happy hour venues promise to elevate your evening and celebrate the joy of life on the California coast. Join us as we explore the city’s most exciting happy hour destinations and the lively spirit of San Diego.
If you’re looking for a happening spot with live music, dancing, and drinks, look no further than Cafe Sevilla of San Diego. This happy hour destination is located in the historic Gaslamp Quarter in downtown San Diego, just a quick walk from many attractions. Cafe Sevilla hosts flamenco shows and live music and has a killer sangria that will make your time at a happy hour even better.
Happy Hour Deals: Sunday to Friday from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm – $5 beers, $6 wines, $7 sangrias, $7 well drinks, $10 craft cocktails, and $5 to $10 tapas.
Blade 1936 is the ideal spot to cozy up for a comforting Italian meal and a glass of wine or handcrafted cocktail. This Italian restaurant and bar, just a couple of blocks inland from Southern California Beach Club, boasts a modern interior design to reflect the modern Italian menu. The menu features Italian cuisine and tons of wine. However, I can’t recommend the cactus di Campagna cocktail enough. It’s a delicious twist on the classic margarita.
Happy Hour Deals: Tuesday all night and Wednesday to Thursday and Sunday from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm – $9 cocktail of the month, $6 beer coors original, $7.50 house wine, $7.50 pinot grigio or chardonnay, $7.50 cabernet sauvignon or chianti, and $8 to $12 bites.
You’ll find Monello, a warm, dimly lit, intimate restaurant, in the heart of San Diego’s Little Italy neighborhood, next door to Underbelly. Monello is open for brunch, lunch, and dinner and has a cheese wheel pasta that’s to die for. As far as drinks go, I suggest the monte rosa for a refreshing lemonade with a bite or the del Bosco. Either drink is perfect for sipping on during happy hour and pairs nicely with an appetizer to share.
Happy Hour Deals: Tuesday to Friday from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm – aperitivo offered are available at the blackboard.
Head over to Point Loma’s Liberty Station and pop into the Presley for a drink or two and a bite to eat with your friends. This outdoor restaurant and bar is the optimal spot to hang out and relax with friends for happy hour when the weather permits because they have delicious food and drinks and ample seating. If you’re looking for recommendations, I loved trying out the cocktail of the month, but you can never go wrong with P’s bee’s knees either.
Happy Hour Deals: Weekdays from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm – $5 House Wine, $5 Presley Lager, $5 Buena Cerveza, and $3 OFF Flatbreads. Wednesday all day – half-price Wine Bottles.
Take a trip down the rabbit hole for happy hour at The Rabbit Hole, located in San Diego’s Normal Heights neighborhood. Here, you can gather with friends inside or on the partially covered patio and grab a round of drinks for happy hour and live music or for their weekly trivia and karaoke.
Happy Hour Deals: Weekdays from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm – $6 Draft Beers + House Wines, $7 Select Specialty Cocktails, $6 Premium Wells, and Half-Off Select Apps.
Dine on modern takes of southern favorites and sip on craft beer, wine, or a signature cocktail like the strange death, a raspberry lemon concoction spiked with gin and champagne, at Bootlegger. You’ll find this spacious indoor and outdoor restaurant and bar in the East Village, and you’ll never want to leave.
Happy Hour Deals: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm – $6 select pints, $5 off select craft cocktails, $7 wine, $6 wells, and $5 to $7 selection of small plates.
The Red Door
Located a little south of UC San Diego Medical Center on West Washington Street, among many bars and restaurants, you’ll find the popular Bar by Red Door next door to its founding restaurant. The restaurant’s where you go for a sit-down meal, but the bar is a vibrant space to enjoy live music and drinks.
Happy Hour Deals: Everyday from 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm – half-price wine bottles and $6 to $10 bites.
Queenstown Public House’s facade is rustic and earthy with a garden-like patio, but inside you’ll find a sleek, prominent bar where you can spend your happy hour. Since this happy hour spot has great deals on a few drinks already, I always suggest a classic margarita, especially because it goes so well with the pretzel bites and jalapeno cheese appetizer.
Happy Hour Deals: Monday to Friday from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm – $8 food and $9 for beer flights, house red, house white, margarita, moscow mule, whiskey sour, or any sangria.
This tavern-like neighborhood destination in Bay Park sits close to the water and offers diners a cozy place to indulge in delicious foods and an extensive list for types of wine. For happy hour, this spot is ideal for sharing one of the many affordable small plates, like cheese and charcuterie plates or steamed mussels, and pairing it with a California-produced wine.
Happy Hour Deals: Friday to Sunday from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm – $2 off draft beers, $7 Luce Mules & house wine, and $1 to $2 off select menu items.
The Whiskey House, in the Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego, is home to over 4,000 whiskeys, craft cocktails, beer, and wine. The space is comfortable and welcoming, with an elevated feel to make your happy hour a bit bougie. And you can’t come here and not order a whiskey flight to share with your friends.
Happy Hour Deals: Everyday from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm – $6 wine, $6 cocktails, $5 to $10 beers & bonus, and $1 whiskey add-on, $1 vietnamese wing, $3 cup of soup, $3 french fries, $6 scotch egg, $6 sausage on a roll, $6 kale salad, $6 t.w.h. fish ceviche, $7 chorizo mac and cheese, $9 t.w.h. burger, $14 salmon filet, $18 new york strip, $12 pork chop, and $5 crème brûlée.
Starlite might be San Diego’s best-kept secret. It’s a bit hidden in the Middletown/Mission Hills area, but once you find it, you’ll want to keep coming back. The restaurant has many shareable plates to enjoy for happy hour and great drink deals to go in on some of the specialty cocktails, like the salted maple Old Fashioned.
Happy Hour Deals: Everyday until 7:00 pm – $2 off all specialty cocktails, $5 wells & select drafts, and $8 select wine (by the glass).
When you and your friends are in the mood to turn your happy hour up a notch, head over to Swan Bar in University Heights near I-805. The interior features neon signs and vibrant lighting that’s aesthetically pleasing and enhances your mood. Plus, they’ve got a mean cocktail list. Personally, I loved the Tiger’s Blood cocktail when I was there last, but you can also choose your favorite.
Happy Hour Deals: Everyday from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm – $6 beers and $5 cocktails.
Bright lights and sleek, modern yet industrial finishes welcome you to Ironside Fish & Oyster in Harborview, just a stone’s throw away from the ocean. Here, you can slurp back fresh oysters and sip on drinks with your friends in a friendly space.
Happy Hour Deals: Monday to Friday from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm – $1 blue point oysters, $2 shi* in tha shell, $6 mrs. yvette’s gumbo, $3 octopus taco, $6 chowder fries, $4 cup of clam chowder, $4 side garden salad, and $2 hand cut fries.
Werewolf is an eclectic and quirky pub in Downtown San Diego that exudes a party attitude. You and your friends can kick off a night out here with their happy hour deals for drinks and food before the night turns wild and the DJ takes over. Grab a drink of your choice, or try a craft cocktail. Might I suggest the Jalapeno Business? It’s like a spicy margarita, only better.
Happy Hour Deals: Monday to Friday 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm – $4 draft beers, $4 well drinks, $4 house wine, and half-price appetizers.
The Waterfront Bar & Grill may be the oldest tavern in San Diego, but it won’t feel that way when you get there. The bar has its historic touches, with walls decked out in vintage photos, but the atmosphere is lively. Plus, the bar is located right next door to the water, and you can’t visit San Diego without at least one stop on the water.
Happy Hour Deals: Monday to Friday 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm – $2.25 miller lite on tap pints, $5.75 miller lite on tap pitcher, and $8.95 crab bites.
If you want to spend your happy hour in an upscale space, look no further than Craft & Commerce. This elevated eatery has tons of delectable bites and shareable plates if you’re willing to spend a bit more than normal. However, their cocktails are worth every penny, especially the rocky mountain high.
Happy Hour Deals: Monday to Thursday from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm and Friday 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm – $8 cocktails, $2 off draft beer, and $4 select menu items.
Take a trip to Hawaii when you visit The Grass Skirt, located down the street from Pacific Beach. Decked out in island flare and tiki-touches, you’ll feel instantly transported to a tropical destination once inside. To fully activate your vacation mode, you should get a round of tropical Tony’s mai tais for the table.
Happy Hour Deals: Monday to Thursday from 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm – $5 to $10 drinks and $6 to $9 food.
Note: Happy hour deals are subject to change. Always call ahead or check online for the latest info!
Why should you trust us?
We use our own local experience and contacts in the city to know which places to include in our lists. We also researched the web and read 5 reputable blogs and websites, including sandiego.eater.com, kingofhappyhour.com, sandiegomagazine.com, sdtoday.6amcity.com and thrillist.com. So that you can be sure you’re receiving the best of the best. We compiled all the results in one spot and ranked them according to how frequently they were referenced.