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Updated Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 01:36 PM

10 places to find cocktails for less than $10 in Seattle

By Tan Vinh
Seattle Times staff reporter

You know what? In spite of all the complaining I hear about the $13 martini and the happy-hour menus without discounted cocktails, you can get good, $5-$8 drinks in Seattle — even a $3.50 Manhattan.

Listed here are 10 places to get good cocktails for under 10 bucks. Some deals are offered only during happy hour, some only on Sundays and some offer these prices regardless of time or day. That will come in handy when you need a few hours away from the visiting in-laws. Bottoms up.

Ba Bar, 550 12th Ave., is known for its pho and late-night, hangover grub, but come Sunday and Monday, Moscow Mule and some classic cocktails cost $5. You can drink and then get your hangover food under one roof (babarseattle.com).

Feedback Lounge, 6451 California Ave. S.W. This rock 'n' roll-themed bar is the best craft cocktail joint in West Seattle. To put itself on the map with the big boys in the cocktail scene, Feedback Lounge underpriced its Sazerac and other cocktails ($7 to $8). Get your cocktail geek on at 6 p.m. Thursday when the bartender picks a classic or original cocktail to discuss (www.feedbacklounge.net).

Hazelwood, 2311 N.W. Market St. Long before Ballard caught the craft-cocktail bug and charged Belltown prices, there was Hazelwood, a cocktail den for the artists, line cooks and other industry folks. Hazelwood didn't get a big head with the fancy cocktail movement; it's still that cozy bar with some $7 cocktails. Hang out in the upstairs area and try not to fall asleep on those comfy couches. No website (206-783-0478).

Liberty, 517 15th Ave. E., is one of the best neighborhood bars, with stellar craft cocktails without the pretentiousness. Don't call your bartender a mixologist here. The cocktails are a few bucks cheaper than at most bars on the Hill (www.libertybars.com).

Oliver's Twist, 6822 Greenwood Ave. N., makes the best craft cocktails in North Seattle, and every drink on the menu is less than $10. Drinks are $2 cheaper on Sundays and during happy hour (5-7 p.m. Mondays-Saturdays). Lots of brown and bitter drinks are featured — perfect for this cold, gloomy weather (www.oliverstwistseattle.com).

Solo, 200 Roy St., is an art gallery/bar in Lower Queen Anne that doesn't have some tattooed, mustachioed lad behind the bar dishing the wisdom of London dry gin. But it does some decent drinks for $4 on Sunday and Monday; nothing fancy, just two- to three-ingredient cocktails that are hard to mess up (solo-bar.com).

Sun Liquor, 607 Summit Ave. E., makes the best Mai Tai in Seattle and, in keeping with its tradition, most drinks cost $8-$9. Come during happy hour (5-7 p.m. daily) and drinks are discounted, at $6 to $7. If it's too hard to find parking around the original Sun Liquor, you can head to its second location, Sun Liquor Distillery, 514 E. Pike St., though the former is where the cool kids hang out (sunliquor.com).

Von's Roasthouse, 619 Pine St. It's not posted on the menu, but regulars know this downtown bar serves $3.50 house martinis and Manhattans. (Tip: Order your Manhattan or martini with two dashes of orange bitters.) When the bartender asks if you want the $3.50 gin or vodka martini, you know the correct answer is gin, right? (www.vonsroasthouse.com)

Zigzag Café, 1501 Western Ave., remains the gold standard for craft cocktails and customer service. Bartenders always remember your name and your go-to drink. Its drink menu is better than ever, with all drinks $6-$8 during happy hour (5-7 p.m. Mondays-Fridays). Drinks are mostly on the dry and boozy side. Try the Frank Lucas cocktail by barman Erik Hakkinen, a smoky scotch drink, with hints of vanilla from the vermouth, orange notes from the amaro and a smooth, chocolate mole finish (zigzagseattle.com)

Tan Vinh: 206-515-5656 or tvinh@seattletimes.com. On Twitter @tanvinhseattle.


GREG GILBERT / THE SEATTLE TIMES
Liberty's Mother's Little Helper is made with gin, fresh lemon juice, clover honey syrup and Scrappy's lavender bitters, and is garnished with lavender.




DEAN RUTZ / THE SEATTLE TIMES
Michael Klebeck owns Sun Liquor bar and Sun Liquor Distillery on Capitol Hill — both places offer cocktails for less than $10.




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