What is Happy Hour?

There’s nothing better after a hard day’s work than kicking back with some friends and downing a few cold ones. For bars, pubs, and restaurants, this practice has become a common way to let their customers relax, to make them “happy” before dinner. The history of happy hour has a surprisingly strong—if not varied—connection to the Prohibition Years.

The Happy Hour that we all know these days comes from American Naval slang following the First World War. A “Happy Hour” was a period of time on a ship when the sailors could entertain themselves with sports or other activities intending to boost morale.

At the same time, the U.S. was going through the Prohibition and people would gather together in secret speakeasies or at their homes to consume illegal cocktails before dinner. Happy Hour as an expression was soon picked up, either directly or second hand, from the naval slang and merged to describe these pre-dinner gatherings.

To the rest of the world celebrating Happy Hour may seem a bit odd, but for those of us that live in Vancouver (or in British Columbia), this is a very big deal. It has only been a few months since our government relaxed their rules around allowing restaurants and bars to offer Happy Hours, but we have embraced it completely. Vancouver restaurants did not warm to the concept straightaway but they are now coming around with special Happy Hour menus.

The challenge now is to find the best Happy Hours whilst you are here in Vancouver. Below are a few sites that offer great suggestions:
• 5 of Best Happy Hour in Vancouver
• Westender: Vancouver's 50 Best Happy Hours
• Fabulously Frugal 
• Yelp: Best Happy Hour Vancouver 
• Globe and Mail 
• Vancity Buzz 
• Vancouver is Awesome: 11 Great Vancouver Happy Hour Deals
• Notable: The 7 Best Happy Hours in Vancouver
• 604 Now: 10 Appy (Or Happy) Hour Deals in Vancouver You Need to Know About
• Vancity Drink Specials