The Nine Best Denver and Boulder Happy Hours for Vegans

Veggie burger sliders at Root Down are a great happy-hour snack.
Veggie burger sliders at Root Down are a great happy-hour snack. Facebook/Root Down
Sure, vegans might be passionately concerned about the environment, animal welfare and health, but we like a good party just as much as the next person. Get yours started early while taking advantage of a great deal at these happy hours — all of which offer tasty plant-based options for snacking while sipping.

Blue Sushi Sake Grill
1616 16th Street
Happy Hour: Monday through Saturday from 3 to 6:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 10:30 p.m. to midnight, and Sunday from noon to 8 p.m.

A sushi bar isn't the most obvious choice for vegan dining, but happy hour at this downtown spot includes edamame, a house salad topped with crispy wonton strips, crispy Brussels sprouts tossed in a creamy lemon miso sauce, and chili nasu, which is broiled eggplant in a lemon miso sauce and crispy sweet potatoes. For happy-hour dessert, the chocolate torte is totally vegan; chocolate ganache is topped with coconut milk layered with toasted coconut and cashew, all served with raspberry sorbet. Drink specials include an eight-ounce pour of hot Gekkeikan sake for $6, a Kirin sake bomb for $3.50, and Kirin drafts for $3.50.

click to enlarge Tacos are part of the happy-hour specials at City, O' City. - FACEBOOK/CITY, O' CITY
Tacos are part of the happy-hour specials at City, O' City.
City, O’ City
206 East 13th Avenue
Happy Hour: Daily from 2 to 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Happy hour is also comfort-food time at this vegan staple. Savor a hearty poutine — fries topped with flavorful gravy and cheese curds (which you can swap out for vegan cheese) — or seitan wings tossed in either Buffalo or barbecue sauce and served with ranch dressing. Tacos are just $2 each, and drinks are $2 off.

click to enlarge Yucatan tempeh tacos at Fresh Thymes. - FACEBOOK/FRESH THYMES EATERY
Yucatan tempeh tacos at Fresh Thymes.
Fresh Thymes Eatery
2500 30th Street, #101, Boulder
Happy Hour: Monday through Saturday from 4 to 6 p.m.

Fresh Thymes isn't entirely vegetarian, but the restaurant/market keeps plant-based eaters in mind, even during happy hour. Grilled tempeh wings are marinated in the signature riot wing sauce, and the tempeh train continues with Yucatan tempeh tacos — or choose an order of flatbread fritters. Happy hour drops the price of select red or white wines to just $5 a glass and $1 off all beers.

click to enlarge DANIELLE LIRETTE
Danielle Lirette
Leaf Vegetarian Restaurant
2010 16th Street, Boulder
Happy Hour: Daily from 3 to 6 p.m.

There are plenty of vegan options at this health-focused Boulder restaurant. “Crab” cake sliders, samosa potato cakes, Buffalo cauliflower tacos with "bleu cheese," fries, crispy harissa tofu, and mushroom burger sliders with pepper jelly are all tasty options. For an additional item, just ditch the feta on the grilled flatbread with beet hummus.

click to enlarge Toast to Linger's vegan options for happy hour. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
Toast to Linger's vegan options for happy hour.
Danielle Lirette
2030 West 30th Avenue
Happy Hour: Monday through Friday from 4 to 6 p.m.

Kick things off with a Great Divide Titan IPA or other local brew for $5, or wine or a cocktail for $6. Request the Mongolian barbecue and samosa buns to be made vegan, or opt for the zucchini baba ganoush. Round it out with a roasted-beet salad and sweet-potato waffle fries with chipotle ketchup. The happy hour menu is available on the rooftop or at the bar.

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Kristen Kuchar is a Colorado writer covering craft beer, food and travel. For Westword, she explores vegan dining and the state's artisan beverages, such as cider and mead.