August 18th, I find myself at an Inner Harbor establishment which I’ve heard has a pretty decent happy hour – a few friends from downtown places of professionalism want to go and I know at least one person that works there, so I say to myself hey, it’s the 80s and beat feet through the Harborplace promenade as a completely bonkers rain storm begins to brew in an effort to a) not get drenched and b) get decent seats at the bar. Well I accomplished one of those feats as the rain hadn’t hit yet but two rich dicks jacked our seats at the bar. Oh well. Throughout the happy hour I begin jawing about the state of things at The City That Breeds, most notably how local blogging is completely dead as a doornail, how we’ve got a podcast going, how Facebook pretty much ruined content creation, that sort of thing. Well, one Happy Hour companion suggested — rather, essentially demanded — that I revive the former practice of blogging locally for fun and profit. I thought for some time about how fucking long it’s been since I wrote a proper blog post, how long in general a bunch of us in the area have been doing it as a hobby, how the field for writing about local content is wiiiiiide open right now, and how much like pushups you gotta start with one if you’re ever going to get back into shape. Except like, with writing. Writing blogs. So here’s a blog about the happy hour at The Capital Grille, 500 E Pratt St, Inner Harbor. Enjoy!
Hey. Do you like happy hours? Sure, we all do. Do you like happy hours surrounded by rich mahogany and large portraits of important people with leather seating? I mean, you might. But most importantly, do you like
$6 glasses of wine and free goddamned food?
Then perhaps a trip to The Capital Grille is in order for you and your happy hour seeking companions.
Look, I’m a local, have been pretty much my whole life and I know what you’re thinking: “BLUGH BUT EVAN THE MAYOR THIS IS A CHAIN RESTAURANT UGH YOU SHOULD BE HAVING HAPPY HOUR AT [INSERT SOME TRENDY LOCAL ESTABLISHMENT] YOU’VE OFFENDED MY EASILY WAFFLING LOCAVORE SENSIBILITIES.” Yeah well #YOLO (hey remember that hashtag?) up in your faces guys, happy hour at The Capital Grille rules. While there are cocktails on special, there’s also a choice for $6 red or white wine (Chardonnay and some other thing, Merlot I think). The pours are generous enough that at an establishment with $50 entrees, a $6 glass seems almost absurd. Not to mention a decent enough view of the National Aquarium and its associated people watching, it’s good enough for your Friday afternoon from 5-7pm any week out of the year.
But wait, there’s more!
The happy hour also includes what I seriously wish every bar or restaurant on Earth had: Amuse-bouche. Translated from French it means “free food for your mouth hole” and is served every 15 minutes. Beginning with a shrimp cocktail (shown) the mouth party also includes:
- Fried oysters
- Lobster/crab cakes
- Sliced steak with garlic and other things on it
- A FRIGGING LAMB CHOP
- Lump crab and corn salad
- Pizza (not actually served)
- Probably some other stuff, I had three glasses of wine and forget
Everyone we met at CG was quite nice and I felt compelled to wear a collared shirt and something better than sweatpants for the occasion, though many denizens of downtown gettin’ classy before the Orioles game had no such compunction. Either way casual attire is fine and if you want to have a classier-and-glassier happy hour than usual for All You Can Drink Miller Lite prices, I’ll more than likely be checking this one out again. And so should you.
WHEW. I did it. A blog post. Wow. Man my arms hurt. Remember when this was how you got your happy hour news? Your restaurant reviews? When local experts had credibility and weren’t just whoring out their Instagram accounts for free shit? I sure don’t either. Either way I think I’ll keep it up for a while, writing little things. I had a pretty lame lunch at a place on Central I’d like to write about and I probably will later. I’m probably too old to still be writing with this voice also. ¯\_(?)_/¯