Friday, July 19, 2024

Long Beach bar staple Baby Gee launches into happy hour (half-off bottles of vino and vegan dogs included)


Baby Gee has quickly built a name for itself after opening earlier this year as not only one of the city’s best bars—it was recognized as one of the nation’s 10 best new bars by the Spirited Awards, the nation’s highest honors in the libation world—it is also dedicated to a constantly revolving menu of cocktails, but one that is always community-centric.

While that term and its various offshoots—”locally focused,” “here for the people,” “connection with the neighborhood”…—have often become a cheap token of advertising for businesses, Baby Gee actually walks the walk: In its short life here in Long Beach, it has managed to garner a cult-like following that is not just deserved but admirable.

One but has to point the fact that owners Daniel Flores and Gianna Johns would literally have full conversations with passersby before they even opened their doors, with Gianna decorating inside while Daniel sawed and sanded wood on the sidewalk.

And their newly minted happy hour—always the perfect blend of high brow and perfectly pedestrian—is no exception to the fact that they continually want to focus on one sole thing: their community.

From $4 regular and vegan hot dogs and soft pretzels to half-off wine bottles and free sea salt’n’chipotle popcorn, it’s a happy hour that strengthens their love of including food—their house pickled veggies and warm olives, as well as their focaccia, are underrated bits of deliciousness—with their unique approach to bar culture.

Those bottle of wines? A heavy focus on Italian natural wines—don’t expect your California cabs or jammy zins—and for those who aren’t too keen on the vino, worry not: The happy hour still offers a daily rotating cocktail for $10 and $2 off pours of beer and wine.

“There’s people getting off of work who are starting to become regulars and sometimes, they don’t want to jump straight into liquor,” Flores said. “With this, they can ease to their evening with a friend as slowly or quickly as they like, have a small bite… It’s really about listening and catering to all our customers because they’re part of our family here.”

My suggestion? Get a bottle of the Il Vergognoso—a pinot noir rosé from the Fattoria Mondo Antico winery near Monte Pernione in Lombardy, Italy—split it with a friend, down some hot dogs and popcorn, and decide whether you’re just going to go straight home to Netflix it up or keep the party going. Either way, its a win-win.

Baby Gee is located at 1227 E. 4th St. Their happy hour is served Monday through Friday from 5PM to 7PM.

Brian Addison
Brian Addison
Brian Addison has been a writer, editor, and photographer for more than a decade, covering everything from food and culture to transportation and housing. In 2015, he was named Journalist of the Year by the Los Angeles Press Club and has since garnered 25 nominations and three additional wins. In 2019, he was awarded the Food/Culture Critic of the Year across any platform at the National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.


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