The Joint: BARcelona Tapas Restaurant 34 North Central Avenue, Clayton; 314-863- 9909
The Hours: Mon.-Fri. 4-7 p.m.
The Deal: $2 domestic bottles, $2 well cocktails, half-off pitchers of sangria; $2 calamari and sliders.
The Scene: Although Barcelona Tapas Restaurant is perpetually decorated for a Barça victory party -- drenched in reds, golds and fútbol paraphernalia -- the atmosphere during happy hour is low-key. Given the intimate layout of the space, this isn't a bad thing.
The sangría is always a crowd pleaser; never hurts to bring along a friend to split a pitcher (optional alternative: a hardy liver). As far as the food available during happy hour, given the price, the quality and portion size of the calamari exceeds expectations. Don't be afraid to try some of the other tapas, like queso de cabra al horno (baked goat cheese), which are tasty and not too much more expensive.
Why You'll Go Back: BARcelona's vibe and menu offer an exotic flair that practically cry out for a noche caliente. It's an ideal spot to meet with friends, sip sexy cocktails, share tapas and add a bit of spice to your evening.
The Verdict: That said, happy hour isn't Barcelona's strong point. Who the heck goes to a tapas bar and says, "I'd kill for a Bud and a few sliders"? Check this place out when you want quality tapas and an intriguing cocktail, but don't expect awesome markdowns during Happy Hour.