The return of Dames Drinking During Daylight Hours: Wild Pear. Again.

A few years ago, the ladies of Eat Salem latched on to the concept of checking out local happy hours. We drank and snacked high and low in search of good eats and even greater drink deals. I even created a logo/badge/whatchamacallit. The project faded after a half dozen reports in 2009, but I am here to resurrect it and breath new, girly boozy breath into the concept.

My friend JoAnne and I endeavor to bring you reports from the trenches of the 3-5p, 4-6p, or otherwise ill-named happy "hours" that many restaurants offer. It's a great way to save your sanity after a hard day at work, and get a deal at the same time.

We arrived at Wild Pear around 4:15pm, to a message on the door that they were closing at 5:30 for a private party. That's okay -- happy hour should be a brief transition from the worries of the workday to the relaxation of the evening, and not a four hour long bacchanalia.

Or at least it shouldn't be the latter very often. (I dunno; ask Karla, Jennie and Rebecca about last time.)

Wild Pear's food is always inventive and tasty, and it's even better with special happy hour pricing for a small select menu. The menu changes -- the one on the web site is not current, and the one we had on our table would simply not pose for a picture, no matter how hard I tried.

The two of us were pseudo-dining, so we each chose a cup of soup and a plate off the happy hour menu. There were no specials on drinks aside from a $5/glass of house wine. But the cocktails are delish, regardless.

I had a chipotle raspberry margarita which was mostly booze and was FANTASTIC. Er, I mean, it was a finely crafted drink. But seriously: great flavor, with perfect presentation and detail. It was just strong on the alcohol, just as we like them!

J had a Peartini. She ooh'd over the aroma and drank it down... I admit amidst our deconstruction of What Is Wrong With This World I didn't ask her for the nitty gritty details of her experience.

For eats I had a scrumptious cup of a creamy tomato basil soup for just $2.75, and a wild mushroom pizza for $6.75. J had a different soup, perhaps a squash curry somethingorother, and a dish of sweet potato, blue cheese and pecans served with bread. It was an amazing flavor combination. A fall harvest brushetta of sorts. REALLY good. Brilliant in fact.

The plates were large for appetizers, small for entrees which makes them perfect to share. A drink, soup and dish were a right fine dinner. The cocktail was certainly good, but does not qualify as a happy hour "deal".

The place was very slow and low key, a perfect way to end the day, and our server was attentive but not mushy. I'm tempted to call him just a tad bit brusque, but perhaps it was just me. I tried to kill him with kindness and he seemed to soften.

The final score: awesome food, fantastic ingredients, creative dishes, great atmosphere, and solid service as you'd come to expect from Wild Pear. But a screaming happy hour deal? Not really. But that's okay. Sometimes 5 cent chicken wings and watered down well drinks just aren't what you are looking for. Ya know?

So, ladies... the more the merrier on these expeditions. We might do one of these every other week or so. Follow me on Twitter and I'll announce when the next one is coming up and where we're going, if you'd like to join us.


The Queen of Fifty Cents said...

Sounds like a hoot! Any way to be included if one doesn't twit?

dtd said...

I think anyone who has been to Wild Pear immediately knows which waiter that was by the description. No complaints, just easy to spot.