When Curt and Deicy Steinbecker opened Ondo's Spanish Tapas Bar in late 2009, they wanted to give Denver a true Spanish experience, channeling the country where they'd met and learned to cook. And in that spirit, they're importing another of their favorite Iberian traditions: the Basque pintxos happy hour.
"Any place you walk into over there, they have pintxos tapas right on the bar," explains Curt. "You do it on the honor system and start sliding things onto your plate. It seems to work, so we're gonna try it here."
Which means that during happy hour, the couple will put out a spread of toothpicked Basque tapas and invite patrons to take what they want. When they've had their fill, the restaurant will count the toothpicks and charge $2 per stick.
The Steinbeckers have put together a run of staples for the daily occasion, including smoked salmon with shallots and chives; goat cheese with strawberry rhubarb jam; lump crab and ham with avocado mash; imported cured chorizo; and, of course, Spanish tortilla. They'll also rotate in some specials in order to serve about ten to twelve snacks per day. And they'll supplement the food with drink deals: $2 Heineken drafts, $4 sangria, $5 house rose, red or white wine, and $3 premium well drinks.
Our favorite part about these deals? Much like at our favorite places in Spain, you'll be able to get full and tipsy pretty cheaply.
The new happy hour, which kicks off today, runs from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Ondo's will no longer be open for lunch.