On Main Street downtown Hartford, there is a small bar called Bocca Rossa that you might not even think to stop in to. It is decorated to high standards, and offers a pretty full menu of Italian cuisine. The prices are about average, they offer great drinks every day and an extensive wine menu. But with there is a price tag of about $8-12.00 for drinks, and upwards from there for wines. The atmosphere is like a lot of lounges, but with beautiful overhead chandeliers, an elegant bar and booths behind the bar for more seating.
The food is great, the drinks are great but the best part is that their happy hour deals are outstanding. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday you can walk in between 4:30pm and 6:30pm for happy hour. Their deals include $4 house martinis, $3 drafts, $5 wines, and $3 appetizers. At first I was worried about the house martinis, are they going to be made with the worst liquors out there? But the liquors they use for happy hour includes just about everything but the very top shelf stuff. It's impossible to find a martini for four dollars anywhere downtown Hartford, even during happy hour. For less than twenty dollars, two friends and I enjoyed a martini each and split an appetizer. Just make sure you ask the bartender what is on the happy hour list (Don't worry, it's a generous selection), and be sure to tip.
942 Main Street