Happy Hour, Summer Style

We never thought it would get here, but patios across the country have opened for business, shades of green have returned to the trees and grass, and you’ve officially packed away your winter coats and jackets. Make this summer exceptional in everything you do – from that summer concert to an after-work patio session or a weekend picnic in the park. Our friends at Aveleda Wines have curated the ultimate summer experience guide to make this summer as notable as you possibly can. We began with the art of the picnic and now move to the happy hour, summer-style.

Stay in Control
Although it means cheap drinks and flowing cocktails, happy hour isn’t an open invitation to be overly indulgent in alcohol. Typically taking place between the hours of 5 and 7pm (what our Montreal YPs call a cinq a sept), drinks are meant to be sipped and conversation meant to be had. If you’ve had too much to drink, others will quickly notice. To maintain control when the appetizers just aren’t doing the trick of filling the belly, alternate drinks with water or opt for a spritzer instead of a glass of white wine.

Seize the Opportunity
Happy hour marks an ideal opportunity for social and professional networking. Everyone is more relaxed than during typical work hours at the office, but people’s brains are still in office mode more so than mid-weekend at a bar or on the dock at the cottage since popular nights for the YP happy hour are usually Wednesdays and Thursdays. In short, typical YPs are still open to talk shop despite the social setting. As this involves sober banter, more or less, excessive alcohol does not play a role in any commitments or promises made, and conversations, meetings and the sharing of laughs are more meaningful. By the same set of principles, happy hour is also ideal for meeting fellow singles – yielding more meaningful connections than a typical weekend night on the town.  

Dress Happy Hour-Appropriate
No matter the venue – from sports bar to swanky hotel lounge – happy hour is not a time to dress like you would to a nightclub on a Saturday night with the guys or girls. The assumption is that one has arrived from the office and respective day jobs and, as such, the dress is expected to reflect this…otherwise you will look like you don’t belong and may not be taken seriously. The lighting is brighter, so others will actually notice what you are wearing as opposed to in a darkly lit lounge or restaurant in the later hours of the evening. If you want to take the opportunity to network with others, you should look the part.

Change it Up
Don’t be that YP who goes to the same bar every single Thursday. It is predictable and you’re bound to be found by people who know where to find you – and that is not necessarily a good thing! Plus, venturing out of your typical means opening up to a larger network of business and social connections. An alternative to the bar (and an especially attractive option as friends start to have babies) is to host your own backyard happy hour this summer. Grab a few bottles of a refreshing summer wine, like Aveleda’s Casal Garcia, and throw a few sliders on the BBQ. This especially makes a great way to end the week with friends or neighbours on a Friday. 

Have Fun
Relax, enjoy and don’t be a buzzkill for the people around you – even if you’re only there out of work obligation. Remember that the purpose of happy hour is to be happy and to shed the day and transition into evening. There is nothing too serious about a good, old-fashioned happy hour. Enjoy it.