I think we can all agree that happy hour is the best hour. Happy hour has institutionalized shamelessly drinking before 3 o’clock. When it’s 65° and sunny on a Thursday afternoon, there’s no better place to find yourself than soaking up sunshine, sipping a half priced bev, on an Instagram-ready patio. With over 120 places to eat in downtown Boulder, I’ve narrowed down the absolute best happy hour spots on Pearl Street.

happy hour

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1. Centro

happy hour

Photo courtesy of @caitrocks on Instagram

While the margs are a Centro favorite, they are only overshadowed by their taller, mintier counterpart, the mojito. Centro’s mojitos are a sweet reprise from the 30+ hours clocked in Norlin this week. Accompanied by the flight of avocado salsas on Centro’s heated veranda, this is the perfect way to start your weekend.

2. (The Kitchen) Next Door

happy hour

Photo courtesy of @nextdoorpubs on Instagram

I have one word for you. Kale. Hate it or love it, Next Door has mastered the art of making kale palatable to all. Out of the deep fryer and onto your plate, these kale chips are the perfect mix between french fries and a salad. Perfect to share with a friend, you two can enjoy these perfectly crispy, salty “chips” with one of Next Door’s Colorado craft brews.

3. The Med

happy hour

Photo courtesy of @faisalbss on Instagram

Although The Med has a reputation for being a place you go when your parents are in town, the happy hour prices are manageable even if you are a broke college student. Pair it with the house sangria and the margherita pizza and you will feel slightly classier than you do at Cosmo’s at 2 AM.

4. Hapa

happy hour

Photo courtesy of @hapasushi on Instagram

Before coming to school in Colorado, I worried that this landlocked state would not be able to satisfy my enduring hunger for maguro. However, I was pleasantly surprised that not only could I find killer sushi here, but that I could find two rolls for $7.50 during Hapa’s happy hour. Personally, I like to pair my sushi with the house sake, but if you’re feeling fruity, the G-Spot is the drink for you.

5. Tahona

happy hour

Photo courtesy of @babeslovebrunch on Instagram

You absolutely cannot go wrong with the quesadillas at Tahona. The chicken quesadilla is the perfect to be shared as a snack or eaten as a meal. The mushroom & spinach quesadilla is also a crowd pleaser (s/o all my Boulder vegetarians). Be sure to wash this down with a cold Pacifico or a house silver coin marg.