What's the unofficial but highly recognizable symbol for happy hour? Pretty much everywhere that observes the evening tradition of discounted beverages and bites?
Yep, it's the martini glass. Maybe, just maybe, a beer mug. But food plays a second fiddle, even if it is part of the deal. And finding a restaurant where the daily happy hour isn't built around a libation but rather food, and one food in particular? Very rare and pretty dang delicious.
Cafe Röckenwagner is breaking that tried-and-true-and-time-for-a-change-up mold via its new Pretzel Hour. Three guesses as to what "Pretzel Hour" might entail at the Brentwood cafe -- by pretzel sticks, you got it on the first try -- and one guess as to how many pretzel variations you'll encounter.
The answer? A bunch, and they're priced at five bucks.
There's a pretzel burger to think about, and pretzel pizza, and a pretzel grilled cheese, and a pretzel dog. Oh, and a straight-up pretzel with dip, the classic, the one you used to walk around the mall munching on.
But this is not mall food. Hans Röckenwagner has built a three-decade local reputation on savory and fanciful entrees that pay homage to his home country -- Germany -- and his love of lighter but still flavorful takes on traditional dishes. So his pretzels? Yep, they arrive with plenty of old-school flair, and are quality, through and through.
Wait. Did we just type "pretzel grilled cheese" earlier? We did. Is that the next wave in food, like cupcakes and fancy donuts? We're laying our prediction down now.
And as for beverages during the 5 to 7 p.m. Pretzel Hour, which happens Tuesday through Saturday? There are beer and wine specials to be had.
The eatery may be changing things up by focusing its happy hour concept on salt-dotted chewy bready goodness, but it isn't moving that far away from the idea that happy hour celebrants do like something to sip.