We all like good deals, and when this concept is combined with beer and delicious food, most Americans tend to freak out. Since its hazy inception, happy hour has grown to become a time of getting the most buzz for your buck. From long work weeks to birthday celebrations, there always seems to be a good reason for heading to your local sports bar and grill and enjoying a few brews with the buds.

As a top-notch brew pub in Minneapolis, The Herkimer knows all about this fantastic process. Our brewery bar proudly crafts rich and bold flavors that are sure to pair well with our vast selection of delicious food options. People like to call us fanatical, yet we like to think of ourselves as “beer connoisseurs.” Today, we’ll begin to take a look into the history of happy hour and its global ramifications. If you and your crew are looking for a craft beer pub that happily supplies the food and drinks, be sure to try our restaurant!

Tricky Origins

Nailing down the exact source for happy hour has proven problematic for many thirsty history buffs. While the combination of happy and hour have been used in concert together for hundreds of years, finding the geniuses who adapted the phrase into beer drinking and general revelry has been difficult. To start, we need to look at the point when happy hour denoted an hour (or more) of entertainment.

Many experts and beer enthusiasts point to the US Navy and their activities aboard the USS Arkansas before the outbreak of World War 1. A group of ingenuitive sailors aboard the Arkansas organized semi-weekly activities that featured top-notch entertainment for the era. From wrestling matches to dance parties, these happy hours focused on entertaining attendees. 1913 saw limited alcohol consumption during happy hours, although there is evidence that wine became an increasingly popular part of the festivities. In June of 1914, the US Navy issued an order that prohibited alcohol consumption aboard any vessel or on any Navy property. Throughout the course of the war, the idea of organizing a happy hour spread to the rest of our Navy.

Prohibitive Foundations

When the 18th Amendment was ratified in 1919, alcohol consumption across the country became illegal for everyone. While we aren’t suggesting that this move was made in error (except for the birth of organized crime in the US!), the simple truth was that Americans were going to imbibe regardless of the consequences. Secret booze establishments, often referred to as speakeasies, flourished during this period. These sneaky locations helped citizens find the alcohol they wanted before heading out and hitting the town. Thus, cocktail hours and happy hours were born to allow for pre-gaming before going out to enjoy dry activities elsewhere.

Our history is closely bound to alcohol. From the American Pastime to modern brewing, beer and its associates have played an integral role in shaping this country. Next time, we’ll continue to look at happy hours and how this modern party time came to be. The Herkimer is proud to provide excellent food and drinks during our happy hours. As a quality brew pub in Minneapolis, we’re dedicated to helping people enjoy food and drink just as much as us. Contact us today to learn more about our brewing process or to reserve your happy hour table!