Cheap drinks, free food: 12 of Sydney’s best happy hour specials (with snacks)

It’s knock-off time in Sydney and there’s a growing number of bars offering discounted snacks as part of their happy hour special. From free karaage chicken at a bustling late-night diner in Haymarket, to a selection of tinned fish and Spanish aperitifs at cut prices in Potts Point, here are our picks of the bunch.

Vermuteria, Potts Point

When: 5-6pm daily.

What: A selection of fortified Spanish wines such as sherry and vermouth are available at discounted prices during “Vermouth Hour” at this cosy, neighbourhood bar. Pair with a selection of tinned seafood, perhaps razor clams or grilled sardines, for the full Euro experience.

How much: Drinks from $9; snacks from $12.

Bonus: Visit Wednesday, Thursday or Sunday to score a hot dog and a beer or vermouth for $20.

60 Kings Cross Road, Potts Point, vermuteria.com.au

Funda, Sydney

When: 5-6pm daily.

What: Throwback R&B hits, Korean snacks and soju cocktails make “Hoju Soju Hour” at this modern Korean restaurant the ultimate post-work pick-me-up. Try a soju martini with a selection of dishes such as fried seaweed rolls with prawns and scallops, and Korean fried chicken.

How much: Cocktails from $12, two beers for $10; snacks from $3.

Tenancy 2 & 3/50 Pitt Street, Sydney, fundasydney.com.au

cheap drinks, free food: 12 of sydney’s best happy hour specials (with snacks)

Try great wines for just $10 a glass during happy hour at Where’s Nick.

Where’s Nick, Marrickville

When: 5-6pm Tue-Fri.

What: Score a curated selection of natural wines (perhaps Quealy Bianco skin contact, or a chilled Alpha Box & Dice Meunier Malbec) at bargain prices during happy hour at this acclaimed inner-west wine bar. Our tip: Order the focaccia with a side of warm fava bean dip, too.

How much: A rotating selection of three house wines, negronis, pastis (anise-flavoured aperitif) or limoncello spritzes for $10; snacks for $5.

Bonus: There’s a plat du jour special every Tuesday to Thursday, which includes a main − perhaps pici noodles with clams and bottarga, or pine mushrooms on parmesan polenta − and a glass of wine for $35.

236 Marrickville Road, Marrickville, wheresnick.com.au

Alfie’s, Sydney

When: 4-6pm daily.

What: Ice-cold martinis are paired with spit-roast beef and chip butties during happy hour at this high-energy CBD restaurant. Martinis not your vibe? There’s also a selection of discounted beer, wine and other cocktails. Our tip: Pick up a burnt honey and beef-fat paddle-pop for the commute home.

How much: Wine from $10, cocktails from $6; hot-chip roast-beef butty for $17.

Shop 2, 4/6 Bligh Street, Sydney, liquidandlarder.com.au/venues/alfies

Bar Elvina, Avalon

When: 4-6pm Wed-Fri.

What: Forget beach weather − cosy up by the roaring fire and listen to vinyl records with a discounted glass of Australian-made natural wine (from the likes of David Franz or Jumpin’ Juice) at Bar Elvina. The happy hour offering also includes a half-dozen Sydney rock oysters from the South Coast for $22.

How much: House wine for $10, Estrella Damm lager for $6, margaritas for $15; half-dozen oysters for $22.

Bonus: Thursday is “Pasta & Vino” night, where you can fill up on a bowl of pappardelle oxtail ragu or spaghetti vongole for $29, inclusive of a glass of wine.

Level 1/50 Old Barrenjoey Road, Avalon Beach, barelvina.com.au

Bar Conte, Surry Hills

When: 4-6pm Mon-Fri.

What: Free snacks! Just a short walk from Central Station, Bar Conte is a Negroni bar and Italian restaurant serving a complimentary snack (chef’s choice of loaded focaccia, spice-roasted nuts or marinated olives) with every drink ordered during aperitivo hour. The drinks line-up includes a Venetian spritz, Campari and soda, and (our pick) the Americano.

How much: Drinks from $12; other snacks from $4.

340 Riley Street, Surry Hills, barconte.com.au

Nakano Darling, Haymarket

When: 5-6pm Mon-Fri.

What: The team behind Yakitori Yurippi in Crows Nest have created a relaxed Japanese izakaya serving classic snacks such as gyoza, grilled salmon with homemade miso, and chicken karaage. The latter is offered free with any tap beer during happy hour. Keen to make it a big one? The bar is open until 2am.

How much: Free karaage chicken with any tap beer, from $12; beer towers from $65.

14 Steam Mill Lane, Haymarket, nakanodarling.com.au

Rocker, Bondi

When: 3.30-5.30pm Wed-Fri.

What: In Bondi, the early bird gets the beer and cheeseburger special. During “Burger and Beer Hour” punters can score a cheeseburger (with a wagyu beef patty, melted cheese, grilled onion and house-made burger sauce) and a schooner for just $19. Add a side of fries, salad or cheesecake for $5.

How much: From $19 for a cheeseburger and schooner of tap beer.

Bonus: Book in on Wednesdays for all-you-can-eat mussels, served with toasted sourdough and your choice of house-made sauce, for $45 per person; and discounted 500ml cocktail jugs from $49.

5/39-53 Campbell Parade, North Bondi, rockerbondi.com.au

Rico’s Tacos, Redfern

When: 4-6pm Tue-Fri for happy hour; “Tortas and Tinnies” from 5pm Wed.

What: Tap beers, house wines and margs are on special during Rico’s weeknight happy hour, but the best night to go is Wednesday. The “Tortas and Tinnies” meal deal includes a torta (Mexican-style burger), a side of fries and a can of Tecate beer for $20. Plus, pool is free.

How much: From $7 for beer and wine, $15 margaritas; Wednesday meal deal $20.

305 Cleveland Street, Redfern, ricostacos.com.au

Tucano’s, Surry Hills

When: 5-6.30pm Wed-Fri.

What: Friday night plans are sorted. Slide into the mirror-ball booth and take in the party vibes at Tucano’s, where fun tropical cocktails, natural wines and craft beers are all discounted during happy hour. Food specials include spanner crab and prawn “lollipops”, carrot and miso dumplings, and Vanella stracciatella cheese with pickled persimmon.

How much: Beer and wine from $8, cocktails from $12; all snacks $12.

277 Goulburn Street, Surry Hills, tucanos.com.au

Morrison’s, Sydney

When: 4-6pm Mon-Fri.

What: This has got to be the most generous happy hour in Sydney. On top of its discounted drinks (including $10 Negronis), Morrison’s is serving free food. Sliders, house-made sausage rolls and cooked-to-order crisps are available, for free, to anyone in the venue − regardless of whether you’ve ordered a drink.

How much: Cocktails from $10, beer and wine from $7; free snacks.

225 George Street, Sydney, morrisons.sydney

Pleasure Club, Newtown

When: 4-7pm Wed-Sun.

What: This bizarre and beautiful late-night bar from the Odd Culture team has just announced a new happy hour, launching Wednesday, May 22. Score hot dogs with LP’s Quality Meats sausages from $9, plus a discounted line-up of beers and unusual cocktails (hello, Passion Pop cocktail made from gin, yuzushu and passionfruit).

How much: Cocktails from $15, beer from $6; Hot dogs from $9.

Basement, 6 Wilson Street, Newtown, oddculture.group

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