22 Doors

Seated in the courtyard under a blue, blue sky, we're enjoying an early happy hour at 22 Doors (Monday through Thursday, 4–6 p.m.). Having walked through the restaurant (past the 22 reclaimed doors that make up the bar) and out through a set of glass doors, we've arrived at a brick patio enclosed by three barn-red walls. The staff is friendly and responsive, the PBRs are a buck a pop, and all draft beer—from Manny's to Mac & Jacks to Maritime—is $3. The shoestring fries, redolent with truffle oil, are perfectly crispy. Asparagus arrives tinged with that delicate, sweet char from the grill, dressed with fat shavings of parmesan. But the calamari, though tender, is bland and strangely soupy. The waiter warned me; I should have listened. But at $3 an appetizer, it's hard to complain. Next we indulge in a $5 martini (straight up, with gin, a sliver of ice floating on top), but what I'm really craving are the girly drinks, and at first, these aren't on the happy-hour menu. The waiter relents. (See if he might for you, too—I can't guarantee anything.) We order a Pedro Greyhound: tequila, agave nectar, cinnamon, blood orange and red grapefruit juices (normally $11). This is just the fruity indulgence I crave on such a gorgeous day . . . for cheap. 405 15th Ave. E., 206-324-6406, www.twentytwodoors.com CAPITOL HILL

 
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