The Place: Beatrice & Woodsley, 38 South Broadway, 303-777-3505
The Hours: Monday through Friday, 5 to 6:30 p.m.
The Deal: Half-price specialty cocktails ranging from $4 to $7, discounted wines and draft beers and weekly-changing appetizers that run between $3 and $7 each.
The Digs: The back story behind Beatrice & Woodsley is a fairy tale, and the intended wonderland manifests itself in an alcove stashed among the boutiques and bars that line South Broadway. Yellow glass windows shed light on the dining room; a forest of Aspen trees stretch from floor to ceiling; log liquor shelves are propped up by chainsaws; white linen curtains separate plush booths; and the same kind of gas lanterns your dad used to bring camping hang from the walls.
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While the aesthetic of Beatrice & Woodsley is breathtaking, its happy hour, cleverly named Nosh and 'Tails, is an underwhelming experience. True, the highly recommended Dandelion Soother ($4) -- a refreshing citrus creation of armagnac, rum, orange and apple -- was surprisingly tasty, and the El Chupacabra ($4.50), made with honey and St. Germain, packed a fruity tequila punch. But the flatbread ($7), a dish that changes almost daily, was disappointingly dry; and the sliced apples atop the arugula, goat cheese and prosciutto were mushy and tinged brown. The squash risotto croquettes ($5) were contrived, on point with the kind of mediocrity you'd find in a joint that prepares everything in a fryer. And despite an accommodating server, the overall service had an air of complacency that was unsettling.
Overall Grade: C