Gettin’ Flirty Under $30: Besotted with Blasted Barley Beer Co.


If you’re anything like us, you have the taste of someone in their 40s or 50s, but the salary (or lack there of) of someone in their 20s. Luckily for our poor souls, most of the restaurants out of our price range offer pretty amazing happy hour prices. So, taking advantage of that, we’re proving you can still have a fun, delicious date for under $30.

A fairly new addition to Downtown Tempe, Blasted Barley Beer Co. is one part pub, one part nightclub, two parts afternoon hangout out and two parts brewery. The patio that wraps around the place looked so fun and relaxing, but since this dating duo decided to go at 4 p.m. in the depths of summer, we were panting after our (very) short walk from the car and decided to take advantage of the A/C.

As you walk in a mural says, “You look ridiculously good today,” offering a cue card for stumbling, smitten dates. With brick walls, a big bar and the “wood-meets-steel” look everywhere, this place is cool. The outside looks wonderful; patio games including ping pong, corn hole and giant Jenga occupy the turf outside along with classic arcade games. My boyfriend and I have been together for over two years, so we zoned out for a bit watching ESPN’s top 10 plays of the day, but I imagine that a courting couple would find refuge in the opportunity to play a game and fill the inevitable silence.

As we went to sit at our booth, giant, stainless steel vats caught our eyes. As our noses picked up the scent of yeast, we realized we were in the brewery. Intrigued, and loving the $3 home brew happy hour price, my hop-loving boyfriend picked the Bang! Bang! Double Black IPA and I asked for the Das Blitz Kolsch. As we sipped our respective brews and then tried each other’s, we were pleasantly surprised by how tasty, complex and impressive both were. The ‘ole “Wanna try a sip?” is a classic way of telling whether or not someone might be up for the other kind of spit-swappin’ later.

It’s going to be hard to beat this deal—during happy hour, almost all of Blasted Barley’s apps are half off. We were tempted by their “popcorn of sustainability” but ultimately chose their wings and nachos with chicken. While they were both definitely messy finger food, they were totally worth it. Plus, I got to live a out a bit of a fantasy… well, kind of. As we were getting ready to leave, my boyfriend reached over and said, “You have a…” as his hand touched my face, I was sure it was going to be an eyelash that he would then blow away, wishing for a happily ever after. Alas, he finished his sentence with “a bit of sauce right here.”

$24.87 for two craft beers and two appetizers.


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