When we were kids, nothing was more captivating than a new toy. Losing an afternoon to a just-purchased set of Micro Machines or a Hello Kitty doll was easy. For a bona fide, rent-paying adult, new bars and restaurants can have the same effect (but with booze!). Pass some time at these recently opened restaurants during happy hour, and be sure that rent check doesn’t bounce.
Bluestem Bar & Table
2610 Lyndale Av. S., Mpls. • 612-870-7855 • www.bluestembarandtable.com
French Meadow Bakery’s adjacent wine bar is Uptown’s latest plaything. It still has that fresh-out-of-the-box scent – if the box was packaged with turkey burgers and organic pommes frites ($6 each during happy hour). Swing through for $3 tap beers or $2-off wines by the glass from 3-5 p.m. weekdays and 10 p.m. to close nightly.
Marin Restaurant & Bar
901 Hennepin Av. S., Mpls. • 612-252-7000 • www.marinrestaurant.com
Mill Valley Kitchen’s sister restaurant has barely had time to unpack, but it already feels at home in Le Meridien Chambers. Weekdays from 3-6 p.m. Marin is extra hospitable, taking $2 off taps, wells and wine by the glass, and flipping flatbreads for $5. What better time to drop by?
Mason’s Restaurant Barre
528 Hennepin Av. S., Mpls. • 612-516-3344 • www.masonsmn.com
It’s hard to believe Mason’s is already two months old (they grow up so fast). On the discount front, Mason’s knocks $1.50 off taps, rails, house wines and signature drinks from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, with food specials from 4-6 p.m. Time flies with seven hours of happy hour every day. Michael Rietmulder