by Chelsea Lin - 273 Reviews - 109 List
In the land of the broke and unemployed, the freeloading cheapskate is king. Since there's no shame in being a tightwad these days, get the most bang for your dwindling bucks at these happy hour hot spots, where you can turn complimentary snacks into an ad hoc meal and spend the money you save on an actual necessity for these dark days: booze.
Updated: April 03, 2009
The free pizza during happy hour at this Financial District resto and bar used to be a well-kept secret, but the word's officially out on this amazing deal. Buy two drinks (beers are $6, specialty cocktails are $9) and get a complimentary Italian-style pizza of your choice.
This upscale SoMa eatery is a popular weekday after-work destination not necessarily for the quality of the food and drink but for the 5pm-7pm free sampling of botanas (bite-sized Mexican snacks like taquitos and bean dip) that come with your $5 margarita, mojito or sangria.
It's hard to compete with nearby bar Jade's two-buck happy hour steal, but this Hayes Valley lounge holds its own with drink specials and a selection of gratis nibbles weekdays 4:30pm-7pm. Go early to stock up on the chips and salsa, tempura, veggies and more before the stock dwindles.
A design-rich atmosphere, French-focused wine list and menu made up of mainly $7-$15 apps means that this isn't necessarily the spot to go when you're broke, but then again, there's always happy hour: ten bucks for a flight of whichever three wines you choose, plus a free mini appetizer like goat cheese crostini.
If you don't want to trek all the way to IKEA to get your fill of cheap meatballs, stop by this German restaurant and bar in the Financial District during happy hour (Wed-Fri 4pm-6pm) to pair some of their little freebie meatballs and garlic fries with your two-litre boot of beer.