There are few things that put me in a better mood than happy hour on Friday night. All that anticipation toward the weekend peaks as I put my hand around a cold beer and take down that first, smooth gulp. All is well.
Last Friday I hooked up with fellow Minneapolites Sam and Kristin for a little lady time to kick off the weekend. I was in charge of the destination; I chose the The Lowry in Uptown.
The choice was easy. First, because I’d been wanting to try it since I laid eyes on those bright, golden lights shining off Hennepin: T-H-E-L-O-W-R-Y. Second, because their happy hour goes until 7 pm and they have a little something for everyone – beers, mixed drinks, wines, and food were all on special.
Sam and I carpooled from NE Mpls and Kristin met us on the bus from work. Usually parking in Uptown is a pain, but since we got there at 5 pm there were still a few open spots in their parking lot. As we left at 7 pm it was slim picking.
After we admired the exterior signage, we hurried inside to get out of the cold and were welcomed by the modern fireplace in the open waiting area. Just to the right is the quiet(er) seating area and to the left, the bar. We opted for the bar area and scored a round booth in the corner with plenty of room for our party of three.
We soaked in the ambiance of the rich wood and the soft, golden lighting as we looked over the happy hour menu. The menu was simple without tier pricing or exceptions to the discounts: seven diverse appetizer options and drinks for any occasion. I decided to go with beer since they have such a great variety of taps. We looked over the menu and made selections easily – each tap has the happy hour price listed after the regular price – genius. Lagunitas Dogtown (me) and Third Street Sugar Shack (Sam) for round one, both $4. Kristin, the only one of us who worked a full day, went with a glass of Callia Malbec, regularly priced at $9 a glass, but $5 on happy hour.
Our server, a bubbly Ryan Gosling look-a-like, was timely, even as the booths filled up around us. He brought our waters, beers, and placed our food order at just the right speed.
Since all of the food options on special sounded scrumptious at this time of day, we decided to pick three and share. Sam ordered the House Chicken Wings, $6. The breading was crunchy and sweet, delicious with or without the creamy ranch for dipping, and a generous portion for $6.
Kristin took the advice of our waiter and tried out the Cream Cheese Wontons, $5. These are not your neighborhood Chinese buffet wontons. Instead, the slightly salty cream cheese is fried in a light wonton wrapper, dusted with powdered sugar, and then drenched in chocolate. Let’s just say those six wontons didn’t last long.
Swayed by the signage and menus, I ordered what I assume are some of their signatures: the 3 Blue Point Oysters, $5, and a Deviled Egg, $1 – both a great deal on happy hour. I squeezed the grilled lemon on top and put a spoonful of their fresh tartar sauce on each. The slimy treats hit the spot. And my one deviled egg was an upgrade from my mom’s classic recipe (sorry mom). The garlic, mustard aioli added a kick to the eggs, and the the bacon bits and pickled relish were the cherry on top. Those two bites were more than worth the $1 price.
We each got another round – Liftbridge Farmgirl for me ($4), Tall Grass Buffalo Sweat for Sam ($4), and another Malbec for Kristin ($5). We hussled out of there after our last sip, knowing there were many patient bystanders hoping to get our table before 7 pm. Each of us got out of there for under $15, a little more with tip. We were equally pleased with the food, service, and urban, cozy decor. I can’t wait to go back with my hubby, sit at that cool, wood bar, and try out the other four appetizers we missed!
This urban diner is just that – homey and hip. Trendy and tasty.
We loved our Ryan Gosling look-a-like waiter. He was quick, even in a packed house, and took time to share suggestions with three indecisive ladies.
Decorative garnish, colorful aioli spread, cast iron serving dish. A little fancier than the diner I grew up with, but hey, this is uptown!
Delicious. Yummy tartar sauce with the oysters, but my favorite were the dessert wontons. Who would have thought?!
Value for Dollars
The Lowry is spot on in terms of pricing. It’s a good value for the vibe you’re getting, killer beer selection, and tasty food.
2112 Hennepin Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55405