Pair a Mortini with a bar snack like mini crab cake BLTs.

Night Life: Feel the power of happy hour at Morton's Steakhouse

Published: Friday, Jan. 20, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 32TICKET
Last Modified: Sunday, Jan. 29, 2012 - 2:11 pm

Morton's Steakhouse

Sacramento

621 Capitol Mall, Sacramento

(916) 442-5091

www.mortons.com/sacramento

Hours: 11:30 a.m.-2 a.m. Mondays- Saturdays, 9 a.m.-2 a.m Sundays

Bar hours: 4:30-10 p.m Sundays-Thursdays, 4:30-11 p.m. Fridays- Saturdays

Dining room hours: 5:30-10 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 11:30 a.m.-11 p.m. Fridays, 5-11 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays

Happy hours: 4:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m and 9 p.m.-close Sundays-Fridays

The real steal: If you are meeting up with friends after work but you still need to save room for dinner (either here in the dining room adjacent to the bar or waiting at home), this is the place to go for Morton's "bar bites" and the special Mortinis or beer and wine specials. Power hours in the bar area at Morton's (which happen twice a night) feature food items for $6 – iceberg wedge bites, blue cheese steak fries, or chicken goujonettes – and for $7, mini crab cake BLTs, smoked salmon pizza, three prime cheeseburgers (super delicious and made from ground filet daily) or four petite filet mignon sandwiches. Morton's also discounts some adult beverages during power hours: $5 beers (Sam Adams Seasonal, Budweiser, Bud Light, Heineken, Heineken Light) and $6.50 wines (BV Coastal Cabernet Sauvignon, Canyon Road Chardonnay, Cavit Pinot Grigio, Columbia Crest Merlot, Montevina White Zinfandel).

The vibe: Upon walking into the rich, dark, upscale bar area, the first thing you will probably see is a bunch of very nice dark suits. Morton's Steakhouse is just blocks from the Capitol. However, you will also see a couple of football and/or basketball fans, some guests waiting for a table in the dining room and, of course, their regulars. Completely separate from the dining room, the bar area has plenty of seating at high tables, a couple of cozy booths and comfy chairs surrounding the bar.

Signature drink: Try the Mortini (get it?) or the Power Hour Cosmo – $7.50 each during happy hours – and they come in pretty glasses.

Take a seat: Strangely, the best seat in the house isn't actually "in" the house. Located just outside the bar door along Capitol Mall, the patio offers a unique setting for casual dining, an after-dinner drink or a puff of your favorite cigar. With the current chilly weather, the torchiere heat lamps add elegance and glow.

Bathroom break: This is where it gets a little tricky. It took this writer a little while to find the restrooms from the bar area. There are two ways you can go – through the back of the bar, past the service area, and then through the back of the restaurant to the other side of the dining area. Or you can also go out the front of the bar area, past the hostess stand and front door where you came in, and then through the heart of the restaurant to the back right corner. Once you find the restrooms you will enjoy the full-length mirror, the private wooden stalls and perfect lighting. Alternate libations: Normally, a $5 Sam Adams Seasonal (the power hour price) is a solid choice. However, since the scenery almost screams for a cocktail, I must suggest an alternative to the beer. The Power Hour Mojito is tasty, refreshing, and will cost you $7.50. Either one, frankly, will accompany your filet mignon sandwiches with style.

Something extra: Morton's is now open for lunch on Fridays. The Morton's Prime Lunch features a prix fixe menu for $35 a person. You receive your choice of soup or salad: lobster bisque, baked five-onion soup, Morton's salad or Caesar salad. In addition, you have a choice of entrée: a "Not So Big" filet served with garlic mashed potatoes, grilled Northwest king salmon served with chef's beurre blanc sauce and rice pilaf, or chicken Christopher served with garlic beurre blanc sauce and mashed potatoes. You also have your choice of dessert with a double chocolate mousse or key lime pie. Beach Hut Deli

6823 Douglas Blvd., Granite Bay (There are 16 other Sacramento-area locations. Go to www.beachhutdeli. com for a full list.)

(916) 791-3130

www.facebook.com/pages/Beach-Hut-Deli-Granite-Bay/204506199185

Hours: 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Mondays-Fridays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m Saturdays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sundays (10 a.m.-5 p.m. after football season)

Happy hours: Monday evenings for football

The deals: Beach Hut Deli is usually where you go to grab a lunchtime sandwich like the hot pastrami and cream cheese Santa Cruz. However, in Granite Bay, it is also where you go to watch Monday night football on the covered patio and get great beer specials. During the first quarter, all draft beers are $1. During the second quarter, all draft beers are $2. During the third quarter, all draft beers are $3. And, well, during the fourth quarter, you order a sandwich to soak up all that beer since regular pints usually cost only $3.25-$3.95 anyway. Draft beers on tap include Coors Lite, Lagunitas IPA, Budweiser, Longboard Lager, Sierra Nevada Celebration, Blue Moon, Guinness, Alohawk, Eye of the Hawk and Great White. In addition to Monday night games, Beach Hut also tries to present a couple of free wine-tastings each month (usually 6-8 p.m on Thursdays) along with free appetizers, so check the Facebook page for upcoming events.

Sergio's

322 E. Bidwell St., Folsom

(916) 983-4300

www.sergiosfolsom.com

Hours: 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Fridays, 4-10 p.m. Saturdays, 4 p.m.-9:30 p.m. Sundays

Happy hours (early bird special with wine tasting): 4-6 p.m. Sundays-Thursdays

The deals: This steak and seafood restaurant lets you sample numerous wines before dining to make sure you have the perfect match. During their early bird hours (throughout the dining room), you are able to choose a soup or salad, an entrée (past choices have included fish, chicken, ravioli, eggplant and prime rib) and spumoni for $18.95 a person. The wines by the glass, to pair with your meal, generally fall between $6 and $12. Currently, the most popular red is the $8 Filus Malbec and the featured favorite white is a $7.50 Terra Mia Pinot Grigio. While not the typical happy hour spot, if you are looking for an early evening involving dinner and wine – with quality and romance for two – and a price under $50, this is an outstanding choice.

Mark and Monica's Pizza

4751 Manzanita Ave., Carmichael

(916) 487-1010

www.markandmonicaspizza.com

Hours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sundays-Thursdays, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays

Happy hours: 5-8 p.m. Sundays and Tuesdays

The deals: On Sundays, it's about the pizza. Order a large or extra-large pizza and get a small pizza of the same type for free. On Tuesdays though, if you dine in, you can get a large two-topping pizza and a pitcher of domestic beer or a bottle of wine (plus a free Mark and Monica's pint glass) for $23.99. Your domestic beer choices are: Bud, Bud Light, Coors Light or Amber Bock. If you go on any other night, or if you'd like to sample one of their other drafts, they include Stella, Sierra Nevada, Pyramid or Shock Top. They offer a full bar, nine televisions (six of them big screens) showing the games, and an enclosed patio that is big enough to welcome your entire softball team and their families. Also, if you are an "I must have ranch dressing to dip my pizza in" kinda person, make sure you drop by the salad bar.

Do you know of a bar that has amazingly good deals on drinks and food? Share the scoop with The Bee, and we'll highlight it as part of this Night Life feature. Email sacbeenightlife@gmail.com.THIS WEEK'S FEATURED BARGAIN

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