What: Highland Tap and Burger

Where: 2219 West 32nd Avenue, Denver, Colorado 80211

When: Happy Hour is available Monday through Friday from 3:00 to 6:00 pm. Highland Tap & Burger also offers a late night happy hour from 11:00 pm to close.

Don’t Miss: The Maple Sour Cocktail ($5) and any of the $3 drafts. Don’t Miss food items include the Hand Cut Fries ($4), the Pulled Pork Sliders ($2.50 each) and the Polidori Sausage Sldiers ($2.50 each).

A few years back I was biking through my neighborhood, the Highlands, and I came across a crowd of people enjoying draft beer on a brand new patio. I couldn’t resist jumping off my bike and wandering into the new establishment to check it out. After receiving a warm welcome  and ending up with my own pint of beer in a matter of seconds, I realized I had stumbled upon Highland Tap & Burger’s soft opening. Since then, I have returned to Highland Tap & Burger dozens of times for dinner, drinks, football, beer, and of course, for happy hour.

Highland Tap & Burger is the quintessential neighborhood joint where everyone knows everyone else and the staff welcomes people by name. They host parties, events, football, and even a running club on Wednesday evenings. In a few short years they have become a cornerstone of the Lower Highlands neighborhood. Fortunately for locals and visitors alike, they have a killer happy hour. Running Monday through Friday from 3:00 to 6:30 pm, happy hour is available throughout the dining room, bar area, and patio. And as might be expected, Highland Tap & Burger offers some pretty epic beer specials. For only $3 you can partake in downright delicious drafts like Oskar Blues Mama’s Little Yella Pils, Avery IPA, and Upslope’s Brown Ale. What most people don’t know is that this beer haven also serves up serious cocktails. In particular I recommend the Maple Sour ($5), a cocktail made with Spring 44 Honey vodka, lemon juice, maple syrup, and Angostura Bitters. A truly delicious fall drink, this concoction will satisfy even the most ardent whiskey drinker with its depth of flavor and balance. Highland Tap & Burger also mixes a great Moscow Mule ($5) and Coin Style Margarita ($5), in case that’s more your style.

There might be plenty of beer on tap and TVs throughout the restaurant, but don’t underestimate the quality of food at Highland Tap & Burger. Think of it as the bar food you want to eat, not the bar food you are forced to eat. Their burgers have won awards, but I keep coming back for their fries. Whether you get the plain hand cut fries ($4) served with truffled aioli, or you indulge in the chili cheese fries ($5), this is some serious comfort food. The chili cheese fries have a great ancho milk stout chili on top and are served crispy and hot. There’s not a soggy fry in the bunch. You also can’t go wrong with the Highland Tap & Burger happy hour sliders. While the pulled chicken slider didn’t pack quite enough punch for my taste, the root beer pulled pork and the polidori sausage sliders were both delicious. You can mix or match any two sliders for $5, ensuring that you have plenty of cash left for the delicious drinks. The beef slider is also good, a classic combo of beef, pickle, and american cheese. The food here is simple, consistent, and tasty.

My Happiest Hour column features the best that the Denver culinary scene has to offer and Highland Tap & Burger is no exception. Friendly, delicious, and affordable, this LoHi favorite keeps people coming back and keeps happy hour goers satisfied.