The History of Happy Hour and the Pourhouse have something in common…

Home » The History of Happy Hour and the Pourhouse have something in common…
The History of Happy Hour and the Pourhouse have something in common…

The History of Happy Hour and the Pourhouse have something in common…

Is there anything better than Friday Happy Hour?

Happy Hour is considered the best hour for many of us. It’s proof that the work day is over and you are off the clock for good. Amplify that relief when it’s Friday night and you’ve got the best reason to celebrate you can find.

You’ve made it, you magnificent beast. You know that you earned this. Time to treat yourself to something in a frosty mug, short tumbler, wine glass… Or you know what? Put a paper umbrella in that gaudy glassware and make it fruity! Here at The Pourhouse, we have the Happy Hour you deserve 3-6pm and 9-11pm every day of the work week.

But have you ever stopped to think about how this tradition started? What brave soul pioneered the way for the rest of us to enjoy cheap beer and half-priced chicken wings after a long day of meetings, projects, hard deadlines, or loud customers?

Like us, it was inspired by Prohibition.

While the term “happy hour” was used by the Navy to describe in-ship entertainment, it wasn’t until the Prohibition era that this term became associated with drinking. In 1920, the 18th Amendment went into effect, prohibiting the manufacture, transportation, and sale of alcohol. This constitutional ban came after a group called “the Drys” made a lot of political noise saying that alcohol was a societal evil. (Maybe no one ever invited them to Happy Hour?)

And while the movement led to an initial drop in liquor consumption, things got rowdy really fast! (Kinda like our dance floor at 11pm…)

Renegade drinkers — also known as “the Wets” — flocked to speakeasy clubs where they used the term “happy hour” as a euphemism for drinking sessions ahead of dinner in public restaurants where serving alcohol was illegal. (If you feel seen by this group of renegades, raise your hand.)

Turns out, the consumption of alcohol is good for the country. Duh.

By 1933, there was no denying the nightmare consequences the Prohibition had on us. The “social experiment” cost over $300 million to enforce and resulted in $11 billion in lost tax revenue for the federal government. Not to mention, it eliminated lots of jobs, caused businesses to close their doors, and opened up the floodgates for bootlegging and the American mob. (And this is why you should follow what’s happening in politics.)

As a result of these ramifications, the 21st Amendment was ratified on December 5, 1933, repealing the eighteenth amendment and ending the Prohibition era for good. (End scene.)

Happy Hour at the Pourhouse

If you’re looking to shake off your day in Minneapolis, you needn’t look any further. Our Prohibition-themed bar is a jack-of-all-trades. Stop by for a delicious American style lunch during the week, hang out at our happy hour 3-6pm and 9-11pm Monday through Friday, or experience live music and bottle service on Friday and Saturday nights. Choose the Pourhouse Downtown or the Pourhouse Uptown location and get the amazing food and drink specials of Pourhouse happy hour.

Constitutional Amendment 2-4-1

While other Minneapolis bars may honor Happy Hour one hour a day Monday-Thursday with a limited menu of fries and flatbreads or rail drinks and tap beer, The Pourhouse is true to its speakeasy origins.  Most importantly we’re always hiding out from Prohibition in here. There are TWO happy hour times each day and are one of the few Minneapolis bars that extenda Happy Hour to Friday (the most Happy Hour-y day of all the days). We have drink specials: 2-4-1 select drinks! We got food specials: 2-4-1 full menu! We have music if it turns to dancing! HD TVs are here if it’s time to zone out!  In conclusion, you know we have it all because we take Happy Hour seriously. It’s our namesake.

See you at the bar, friends. You’ve earned your hour of happy.