Happy hour at Hola Arepa: Killer food, cheap beer, and a charming patio

Categories: Cocktails

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Benjamin Carter Grimes
Snacks and drinks at Hola Arepa
You made it to the end of the week.

And now, to paraphrase the wisdom and conviction of the lady from the Watson's commercials: It's hot and you need a drink. So we at the Hot Dish have taken it upon ourselves to recommend a good happy hour.

To kick things off, we're outlining the best deals at a cheery little place with killer food and a nice neighborhood patio.

See Also:
Top 10 Happy Hours in the Twin Cities


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Not just for caffeine addicts: Lowry Hill Dunn Bros. introduces cocktails, wine, and beer

Categories: Cocktails, Coffee

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Courtesy of Dunn Bros.

Sanjeev and Loveleen Azad, owners of the new Dunn Bros. location near Hennepin and 25th, wanted to create a coffee shop that fits the feel of their neighborhood. The end result is less chain coffeeshop and more wine bar meets cocktail bar meets neighborhood hangout.

See also:
Muddy Pig and Pig and Fiddle team up on a brewery tour of Surly, Steel Toe, and 612

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Are cocktail rooms the next taprooms?

Categories: Cocktails

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Joy Summers

Let's paint a scene: You enter a bar and grab a seat. You're handed a copy of the latest menu, hot off the press. As you peruse the menu, you notice a variety of choice cocktails crafted from house-made liquors. You make your choice, order, sit back and revel in a refined experience designed with a focus on craft-made, small-batch booze. Welcome to a Twin Cities cocktail room.

See also:
Local Spirits: A look at Twin Cities micro-distillers

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Why we hate "His and Hers" drinks

Categories: Cocktails
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Joy Summers
Keep your gender binary out of my cocktail.
When we first visited the Freehouse back in January, our initial impression was less than glowing. Maybe a lot less. Since then the brewpub has been fine-tuning the things it does best: appetizers (the hard cider-battered cheese curds with quince jam disappeared very quickly at a recent happy hour), brunch, and drinks. The Freehouse's cocktails have proved to be a pleasant surprise, including signature breakfast drink the Wake-Up Call. The bar program has a strong enough point of view to differentiate itself in a neighborhood that has a high standard for beverage trends.

But there's one thorn we just weren't able to ignore, one thing that made us think much too long and hard about liquor and ice and garnish in a glass -- an experience that should be enjoyable rather than infuriating. We're talking about the His and Hers Old Fashioneds. 

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Robert & Maria at Nightingale: Manzanilla and gin pair up in this dry, crisp refresher

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Robert & Maria, the official power duo of summer.

Robert & Maria
Nightingale
$8

It's a perfect 77 degrees, bright sun streaming through tall windows, and in front of you sits a gem-toned stunner of a cocktail with something dark lurking beneath the surface. In the presence of Nightingale's Robert & Maria, you don't need to think, just drink. Dry and crisp, with a thirst-quenching spot of sweet summer fruit, it's the only thing we want to be drinking all season long.

See also:
Nightingale lures Twin Cities night owls


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Sip a refreshing mint julep or swill a smoky Manhattan for Father's Day [RECIPES]

Categories: Cocktails

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Nothing says Father's Day like a scotch rinse...

When it comes to Dad's usual libation, many of us think immediately of Miller High Life or something similar. But this June 15, why not step up your game and show you've got some class?

To ensure your success in the drink department, two of the cities' finest mixologists are here to help with spot-on cocktail suggestions for dear old dad. Both made a beeline for the brown liquor, with some classic cocktails and some summery alternatives.

See also:
Father's Day Eats: Top 5


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UPDATE: Bradstreet Craftshouse will move into former Rye Deli space

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Photo courtesy of Bradstreet Craftshouse
For those of you whose hearts stopped beating earlier this week when it was announced that craft cocktail pioneer Bradstreet Craftshouse was closing up shop with the sale of the Graves Hotel, you can breathe a sigh of relief. We learned late yesterday afternoon that while they'll indeed be closing their doors at the Graves, they'll be reopening them in the location that was, until very recently, occupied by Rye Deli.

Bradstreet will close at the Graves by the end of the month and will reopen in Lowry Hill sometime in August. Here's what you can expect from the new incarnation of Bradstreet Craftshouse.

See also:
Bradstreet Craftshouse set to close as the Graves 601 Hotel changes handsMore »

Updated: Bradstreet Craftshouse set to close as the Graves 601 Hotel changes hands

Categories: Cocktails, News
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The venerable Bradstreet Craftshouse raised up several of the Twin Cities' favorite mixologists and taught them the pre-Prohibition cocktail basics. Now, only a month after their five-year anniversary party, the hotel is being sold and Bradstreet will change concepts when the property changes hands.

See also:
Bradstreet Craftshouse to throw a birthday bash with bartender alums and special guests


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Meta-hattan at Bluestem Bar: Take matters into your own hands with this drink of the week

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Customization is key: DIY for a more perfect Manhattan.

Meta-hattan
Bluestem Bar
$12

The modern drinker is doing it for herself: home brew, basement stills, DIY bitters. A drink you build barside from neatly poured individual elements you can sample, mix, and match? Right up your freshly made over and upcycled alley. Industrious imbiber, satisfy your need to see a project from start to finish with the Meta-hattan, a deconstructed, build-your-own Manhattan from the newly launched cocktail program at Bluestem Bar.

See also:
Bluestem Bar & Table: A first look


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Temper Tantra at Hola Arepa: Get your way with this drink of the week

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No hissy fits here: keep the whole gang happy with a gingered-up bottle of rum.

Temper Tantra
Hola Arepa
$8.50

Food trucks are fleeting, spontaneous, fun; we can't deny the thrill of the chase, like running after the ice cream man in your swim trunks with a couple of quarters in your grubby paws. But once you're licking the last of your Choco Taco off your fingers, life feels just a little emptier. Now you can make the feeling last and last at Hola Arepa's new home in Kingfield, where veteran barkeep Dan Oskey preserves that childlike excitement with delightful jarred and bottled cocktails like the playfully seductive Temper Tantra.

See also:
First Look: Hola Arepa's new restaurant


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