Bellingham is home to 14 breweries, 4 craft cideries, a winery, and dozens of award-winning bars and restaurants. That makes competition for happy hour traffic fierce, and many restaurants offer great deals to bring in customers. So, if you’re looking for a place to grab a drink or a bite to eat after work, you have a lot of good options.
In this guide, I’ll highlight 8 of my favorite places to go for happy hour in Bellingham.
The Black Cat
Happy hour: 3-6pm Monday-Thursday
The Black Cat is located in Bellingham’s historic Fairhaven district and is a staple for food and drinks. The restaurant serves up everything from local oysters and crab to burgers and steaks, and most dishes are priced under $20.
During happy hour, The Black Cat has a special appetizer menu that includes a $5 burger, $7 fish & chips, $10 steamed clams, and more. You also get $1 off drinks, including classic and specialty cocktails, beer, and wine.
If you miss happy hour, The Black Cat also has a late-night menu that looks a lot like its happy hour menu. The late night menu is available from 10pm to close.
Happy hour: 2-5pm daily
Aslan is one of Bellingham’s most popular breweries and always has a wide range of outstanding beers on tap. You can’t go wrong with Batch 15, Aslan’s flagship IPA, but I also recommend mainstays like Cosmic Dreams and Dawn Patrol.
The food at Aslan is just as good as the beer, which is why this brewpub is frequently packed. The menu isn’t huge, but you’ll find pretty tasty sandwiches, creative bowls, burgers, and salads.
During happy hour, all Aslan beers are $1 off. The brewpub also has a special appetizer menu that includes poutine, pork belly, and spicy katsu burger. All of the bowls on Aslan’s normal food menu are $1 off, too.
Happy hour: 2-6pm daily
Bar Cicotti is an off-the-beaten-path favorite of mine. This small bar is an offshoot of Storia Cucina, an incredible Italian restaurant just down the block. Bar Cicotti has some of the same food items as Storia Cucina, including house-made focaccia and pasta. But it also offers a more intimate atmosphere that feels more like a wine bar than a restaurant.
During happy hour, Bar Cicotti offers $2 off wine glasses, $5 beer and cider on tap, and $8 Cappelleti spritzes. There are also a few discounted food options, including tigelle (an Italian street sandwich), stuffed mushrooms, and deviled eggs.
Keep an eye on Bar Cicotti’s daily specials, too. On Tuesday nights, the bar offers 30% off wine bottles, and on Wednesday nights there are discounted wine flights. If you arrive before happy hour ends, you can take advantage of both the cheap food options and the daily special.
Twin Sisters Brewing Company
Happy hour: 3-5pm daily
Twin Sisters Brewing Company is one of Bellingham’s newer breweries, but it has quickly established itself as a go-to location in the summer thanks to its spacious outdoor beer garden. The bench-style seating lends itself to making new friends and there are lawn games to keep you entertained.
Twin Sisters offers a daily happy hour with $1 off beer, wine, well drinks, and cocktails, plus $2 off all appetizers. These include pretzel bites with beer cheese, mac and beer cheese, and carnitas fries. The appetizers are big enough to share or could easily be a full meal for one person.
Rock & Rye Oyster House
Happy hour: 4-6pm Tuesday-Thursday + all day Sunday
Rock & Rye is an upscale restaurant in downtown Bellingham that serves up raw and cooked oysters, local salmon, steaks, and more. It’s a great place to check out if you’re looking for fresh Pacific Northwest seafood.
The star of Rock & Rye’s happy hour is the oyster special. You can get six fresh oysters on the half shell for $16 (normally $20-$23 outside of happy hour). The selection is chef’s choice, but Rock & Rye stocks several local oyster varieties including Samish Beauty, Judd Cove, Massimo, and Samish Pearl.
Happy hour also offers $9 manhattans and palomas, $9 house wine, and $1 off select draft beers.
Happy hour: 4-7pm daily
Temple Bar is the place to go in Bellingham for specialty cocktails. The bartenders there are incredibly knowledgeable about their craft and frequently introduce new specialty drinks onto the menu. For the less adventurous, Temple Bar also makes classic cocktails better than almost anywhere else in town.
Temple Bar’s happy hour doesn’t offer a blanket discount on cocktails, which would be ideal for trying out all the specialty drinks. However, there are a few $9 classic cocktails available. You can also get a bottle of wine and a cheese plate for just $20.
Personally, I like to spring for a specialty cocktail and order a meat and cheese board from the happy hour menu.
Happy hour: 5-7pm Monday-Thursday
Pure Bliss is a specialty cake shop that doubles as a bar. Who needs dinner when you can get a slice of cake and a bottle of wine instead? Pure Bliss’s cakes are absolutely spectacular, and there are typically at least 10 different cakes to choose from on any given afternoon.
During Pure Bliss’s happy hour, all cake slices are $1 off. Slice prices vary by cake, but they’re usually around $4-$6 each and they’re definitely big enough to share. In addition, draft beer, cider, and wine glasses are $1 off and wine bottles are 10% off.
I recommend going early since some of the most attractive-looking cakes sell out before happy hour ends.
Happy hour: 3-6pm daily + all day Sunday
Black Sheep is another downtown Bellingham classic. It’s an unassuming bar with a relaxed vibe and great street tacos. If you’re looking for a little more food, Black Sheep also has a pretty tasty chimichanga.
Black Sheep’s happy hour offers $7 margaritas and palomas, $9 frozen margaritas, $9 wine glasses, and a $4 Mexican lager from Kulshan on tap. The margarita deal is hard to beat, especially if you’re just looking to hang out downtown on a warm summer afternoon.
I also recommend giving Black Sheep’s tequila menu a look. It’s not discounted for happy hour, but the selection is huge. Bellingham doesn’t have a dedicated tequila bar, but Black Sheep is pretty close.