Chuy’s: 11219 Lee Hwy, Fairfax, VA – 4-7pm Happy Hour
I know it might seem weird starting a happy hour segment on this blog while I’m currently banning myself from drinking for our quasi-Whole30 experiment, but I’ve been planning on sharing my favorite Fairfax HH hangouts for a while and when better to share happy hour spots than during the dark, cold days of winter when it sucks too much to be outside anyway? (#sendmeallthedrinksplz)
Out here in the burbs it might seem challenging to find a local place with all the essential elements of a good happy hour—especially if you’re used to DC where you can’t swing a cat without hitting a HH special. In the first place, it is difficult, if not impossible, to find a lot of information about happy hour specials on the web thanks to Virginia’s complicated liquor laws. Second, everything is spread out instead of lined up on one block, so commute is always a factor when trying to get together with your imbibing buddies. Third, sometimes it can feel like your only options are overpriced wine on the one hand and TGI Fridays on the other (not to knock them, they’re okay, but they remind me too much of high school). Luckily we’ve lived here long enough to have a few go-to happy hour spots in our pocket, and we want to share. First up: Chuy’s.
At first glance it looks like your average Tex-Mex establishment and not particularly promising for a happy hour—restaurant bars are arguably dicey when it comes to checking the boxes for atmosphere—but Chuy’s is absolutely one of our favorite places to grab a beverage. The bar itself has tons of charm. The sea of carved and painted fishes hanging from the ceiling are actually made by a family in Tijuana…for every single Chuy’s location! I can’t remember exactly, but I think the bartender said there was over 1200 fishes in the Fairfax location alone.
The real upside to HH at Chuy’s is their complimentary nacho bar. Their nacho toppings are hella tasty and what a gift to those of us who want to party on a budget! Careful though, you might come for the free nachos and end up staying for the delicious entrees—yep, even if you want to splurge and go for full-on dinner, Chuy’s has got your back. My favorite is the green enchiladas. I don’t know WHAT they put in that green sauce, but it is so good that I scoop up the leftover sauce to take home with me. I don’t even LIKE leftovers.
I almost forgot – the drinks! They have four mixers running behind the bar at all times, pumping out interesting frozen margarita mix by the gallon. I’m usually an on-the-rocks gal myself, but occasionally I try one of their special flavors. As far as the ‘ritas on special go, they’re not bad – maybe a little light on the sauce for my taste, but you can add an extra shot for a few extra bucks if you’re feeling it.
Stay tuned for our next favorite Fairfax happy hour spot next week. Do you have a favorite? Share with us!