Since opening in 2015, the spacious and modern downtown cocktail bar Shift Drinks is offering its first happy hour, and it appears to be making up for lost time: Happy hour now runs all day, every day. Nothing on the menu costs more than $7—and that includes some high-end libations. Speaking with Eater, co-owner Anthony Garcia says he just wants customers to be able to “ball out on a budget.”
Garcia explains that rather than serve the same items at smaller sizes, or inferior products at cheap prices, he and co-owner/bar-manager Alise Moffatt worked to provide quality products at lower rates for happy hour. At times, this means leaning hard on distributors, something the team at Shift Drinks “isn’t afraid to do.” At other times, it means taking a loss, such as the Cubano, made with Olympia Provisions pork but sold for only $6. It’s all in the name of Shift Drink’s “raison d'être” to be a place “to come after work and kick it, get nourished, blow off steam, or decompress by yourself or with your work friends.”
New happy hour highlights include $7 glasses of rare orange wine; $7 cocktails, often featuring artisan spirits; and the monthly barrel-aged spirit, which is currently Tomatin 12-year single-malt scotch for $5. Local Royale Brewery has made an exclusive pale ale, too, the Shift Beer. At $3 a pint, it is an attempt to address the “spreading [and terrifying] popularity of the $6 pint.”
The Shift Drinks team says it chose to offer happy hour all-day as a way to address the nontraditional hours more and more of its customers are working. The happy hour menu won’t replace the regular food and drink menus, and you can still find Moffat’s signature cocktails and Garcia’s full list of exciting, “geeky” wines. Along with the bi-monthly free Sunday Suppers, this new all-day happy hour helps elevate Shift Drinks to one of the most accessible and affordable cocktail bars in the city.