The Dietitian’s Guide to Hacking Happy Hour (And Avoiding Pitfalls)

When you think of dietitians, you might think we all steer clear of alcohol at all costs. I am here to tell you, that is not the case. We, too, are human and like enjoying a drink here and there with our friends. And — while many of us are guilty of doing keg stands and nursing horrible hangovers the next day (we all have our moments, right?) — for the most part, we try to drink responsibly and with health in mind.

My point: You don’t have to skip out on happy hour all the time to be healthy. To help you hack your happy hours so that they won’t put a huge dent in your healthy lifestyle, I chatted with some of my fellow dietitian friends to ask them what they reach for at happy hour. Here, your dietitian-backed guide to a healthier happy hour. (And while you’re at it, take note of these Philly happy hour spots for healthy eaters!)

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“Newember” Happy Hour Deals Continue At The Trestle Inn


The Trestle Inn has long been a go-to whiskey bar for the Foobooz World HQ staff and accomplices. Last month, they made drinking here an even more attractive proposition with an oversized regular happy hour, an additional late-night happy hour, plus some nice specials for those making the trek out to Callowhill.

The good news? What was originally a November promotion (called, weirdly, “Newember”) has now been extended into December (probably because the name still technically applies) and beyond. We’ve got all the details below, including on their coffee cocktail–not a hot drink, but still one that comes caffeinated, which is always nice.

Show me the deals

Scarpetta Launches Happy Hour on Rittenhouse Square

Scarpetta offers half-priced cocktails, wine and beer for happy hour.

Scarpetta offers half-priced cocktails, wine and beer for happy hour.

The lounge at the still brand new Scarpetta inside the Rittenhouse Hotel has begun happy hour and it offers 50% off all beer, cocktails and wines by the glass. There is also a bar menu of plates and crostini ranging from $5 to $14.

The cocktails include classics and newfangled concoctions that will rotate seasonally. Look for some holiday cocktails in the next few weeks.

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Center City Workers, Rejoice! Barre3 Is Holding Free Outdoor Classes Tomorrow

If you’ve been binge eating ALL the pumpkin-spice everything while binge watching How to Get Away With Murder for, oh, the past week or so, you are not alone. But it’s about time we all start taking advantage of this beautiful fall weather and, you know, go outside. And we’ve got the perfect reason for you to do just that: This Thursday, October 6th, our friends at Barre3’s soon-to-open Center City studio will be holding two outdoor barre classes at Center City’s Commerce Square. And oh yeah, did we mention they’re both FREE? Yep, that’s right‚ all you need to bring is a yoga mat.

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Lou Bird’s Has A Happy Hour

Lou Bird's opens at 20th and Lombard | Photo via Lou Bird's

Lou Bird’s–the new restaurant in the old Meritage space, opened by Norris and Debbie Jordan of the Happy Rooster–has been getting some solid, early love from Philadelphia. Which isn’t really all that surprising since it has Natalie Maronski (ex of Volver) in the kitchen and Josh Jenkins (former manager at Dandelion) working the floor.

But now, they’re trying to make their little neighborhood bistro even more neighborhood-y by adding a happy hour.

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A Happy Hour Where You Might Learn Something

Martha | Photo by Ted Nghiem

Martha | Photo by Ted Nghiem

Martha Mondays is the alliterative title to the educational happy hour that happens at Kensington’s Martha (#14 on this year’s 50 Best Bars list). Starting at 5 p.m., these happy hours typically showcase a local, beer, wine, spirit or artisan producer that shows up elsewhere on Martha’s menu.

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Nick Elmi’s ITV Adds Happy Hour

Top Chef winner Nicholas Elmi opens ITV next to his Laurel on East Passyunk.

Top Chef winner Nicholas Elmi’s ITV on East Passyunk | Photo by Chelsea Portner

Nick Elmi’s East Passyunk bar, ITV (or as we prefer to refer to it 👁📺 – oh you thought we were done with restaurant emojis?) is adding happy hour. Beginning this evening, the attractive bar is offering discounted, wine, beer and snacks from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday through Friday.

Wines are available for $7 and beers are $5. ITV is also offering a house-made version of Quina for $5. Quna is the French aperitif that most probably know from this famous poster.

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Coeur Turns One and Celebrates with Beer

Bella Vista's Coeur turns one

Bella Vista’s Coeur turns one

Bella Vista’s Coeur turns one on Thursday, September 15th and is partying with some breweries that have a special place in its (ahem) heart.

And in even more good news, from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m., Coeur is offering pints of Yards Philly Pale Ale for just one dollar.

Coeur is also kicking off its birthday week with new weekly specials that include:

  • Tuesday: Half-Price Coeur Burger
  • Wednesday: Half-Price Wings
  • Thursday: Beer-n-Beer (Brisket Sandwich and a featured pint for just $15)

And Tuesday through Friday, Coeur is offering a happy hour of all local beers for just $3. And that is accompanied by happy hour food for $4.

Coeur’s Birthday Beer List »

Volver Announces Fall Programming

Bar Volver adds dinner | Photo by Martin Buday for Garces

Bar Volver adds dinner | Photo by Martin Buday for Garces

With September’s swift approach, Jose Garces’ Volver is getting back into the swing of things. Most notably is the addition of a full dinner menu for Bar Volver. Previously, Bar Volver only offered bar snacks but will now offer more substantive plates. Reservations are also now accepted for dining in the bar area of the Kimmel Center restaurant. The changes answer the demand for quick but elegant dining for the before and after theater crowds. Bar Volver’s hours will be Wednesday and Thursday: 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday: 4:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 4:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. 

Check out the full menu »

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