The workday is finally done, but the stress isn't. That's when happy hour -- that time when bars and clubs offer discounts and specials -- comes into play. Here are five spots that go the extra mile to make you forget about the rest of the day.
3593 Townline Rd., Sagaponack
THE SCENE Many Hamptonites gravitate toward this clean, upscale road house that's an oasis for barbecue dishes and cocktails. Customers can also shoot pool or catch a game on TV.
Sagaponack. "Between the 4-5-6 and the bar bites, you can't beat it." She also recommends the "Manzarita," (tequila, fresh apple cider, elderflower, cinnamon with a maple sugar rim and an apple chip garnish), the latest of Townline's signature concoctions, and part of the 4-5-6.
49 E. Main St., Patchogue
THE SCENE The decor is sparse, with pub furniture and wood floors, but the room is anything but empty as dozens of casually dressed guests, mostly ages 21-35, arrive and keep things busy until late.
HAPPY HOUR One reason this restaurant, pub and club stays so active until the early morning is that it hosts two happy hours -- the weekday workday follow-up (4-7 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 3-7 p.m. Friday) and an after-midnight price break (midnight-4 a.m. Sunday-Thursday). Both offer half-price drinks, and Thursday is Ladies Night -- meaning female patrons can enjoy an additional 50 percent off drinks from 9 p.m. to midnight.
THE SCENE Featuring one of the area's most intricate LED light-display systems, this nightclub ordinarily uses its flash and powerful sound systems to entertain late-night crowds of younger dance music fans looking to catch some of the industry's most celebrated DJs, but on Fridays from 5:30 to 10 p.m., the room fills with a casual but neat 30-and-older crowd.
HAPPY HOUR Half-price drinks and a free buffet are available, but what sets this after-work hot spot apart is the music -- disco and classic dance tunes spun by DJ Peter "Razor" Osback. "I don't have to cook, and I can come here to hustle, cha-cha and salsa," says Al Bey, a computer consultant from Uniondale.
DJ Razor notes that "the happy hour crowd is a little more mature, and they . . . just want to let loose from working all week versus the club crowd that is a little younger and [only wants] to hear the newest hip thing. It's all fun music no matter how old or what type of music you're into. The happy hour is about positive music that makes people happy and makes them dance. I love it and have fun every week."
1270 Union Tpke., New Hyde Park
THE SCENE The tavern section of this trendy Mexican restaurant has atmosphere to spare, with exposed brick, a long bar, several tables and booths and a fireplace filled with glowing candles. The room is dimly lit, and the crowd (ages 25-55) is casual to well dressed.
HAPPY HOUR Expect a large turnout for the Friday "3-4-5" special ($3 draft beers, $4 bottled beers and select drinks, $5 traditional margaritas). Music is presented from videos, which are mixed by a DJ as one would audio tracks; the sound is mainly classic dance and disco. From 7 to 9 p.m., "The Son of K Pacho" drops by to dance on the bar and pour complimentary "magical elixir" shots. Bring along your cellphone camera to snap the action. K Pacho director of marketing Anthony Gentile says "The Son's" arrival spurs a flurry of cell phone cameras poised to capture the show "as if the paparazzi just caught a glimpse of Brad Pitt walking on the bar."
9 Railroad Ave., Patchogue
THE SCENE With a space that feels akin to an airplane hangar, it will be easier to text your friends to ask where they are rather than search for them. The Emporium features three bars, two DJ booths, a large performance stage and an adjacent dance floor, a restaurant, a beer garden and even a bowling alley. The crowd falls between 21 and 45, with the older, casual end of that group in-house earlier for happy hour.
HAPPY HOUR From 5 to 10 p.m. Fridays, $3 Coronas and Heinekens are offered, with half-price drinks for ladies all evening. Each week starting at 7 p.m., That '70s Band performs and a DJ plays beats, leading to more live music throughout the night (a cover of $10 will be charged starting at 7 p.m.; dress neatly).