Whiskey Joe's Bar & Grill Happy Hour: Cheap Beer, Boat Drinks, and Gator Bites

See also "Whiskey Joe's Bar & Grill Brings Key West to Key Biscayne."

There's an entire backstory to Whiskey Joe's Bar & Grill, the new food-and-beverage compound that opened in the old Rickenbacker Fish Company location at the marina on Key Biscayne.

According to Marty Duffany, partier in chief (yes, that's really his title) of the restaurant, Whiskey Joe is a sailor with a pet alligator who travels the Caribbean in search of good food, good drinks, and the ultimate catch. On his way to some island (we'll say Jamaica for the sake of the story), he rode out a storm in Miami and fell in love with a vacant restaurant space on Key Biscayne. The rest is history.

What does that have to do with the fact that you're broke and in need of a beer and a snack?

Apparently Joe also liked happy hour. And Whiskey Joe's happy hour, offered daily (including weekends) from 4 to 7 p.m., has some mighty fine deals to go with a pretty good view.

Like most happy hours, well drinks, draft beers, wines, and appetizers

are half-priced. Specialty drinks, such as margaritas made from scratch

and hand-shaken, are $3 off (regularly $9 each). Freshly shucked oysters

and peel-and-eat shrimp are a buck each. Standard deals for many

restaurants in Miami, we'll agree.

What sets Whiskey Joe's apart is

the fact that the food and drinks are pretty cheap to begin with. Appetizers are regularly priced at around $8 to $12 each and draft beers are $4 to $6. That

makes a good deal even better if you're looking for a bite on a budget.

At a recent happy hour we ordered a dozen oysters, ten peel-and-eat shrimp, four draft beers, gator bites,

spinach and artichoke dip, and calamari. Then, for good measure we had a

strawberry margarita and still came in well under $60 before tip.

Whiskey Joe's is still a work in progress. The outside bar was just

installed when we arrived. In the next few weeks, the restaurant will

bring in live bands from Wednesday - Sunday, host the local Parrothead

club, and have themed Caribbean and Latin parties. Joe's chefs can also

prepare any fish you've caught while you sip a beer on the oversized

deck and the restaurant is planning to institute a "to-go" service that will serve

boaters at the marina. For now, the beer is cold and so are the oysters.

Inexpensive food, a gorgeous view, some Marley in the background, and a cool bay

breeze. You've got yourself a new chill-out place that won't break

the bank.

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