Deep-fried goodness at Kaname Isakaya

HOURS: Daily 5-6:30pm
PRICES: Small plates/sushi $2-$4.50. Sake $2.50-$5.95; $3.95 select cocktails; 16-ounce Sapporo $3.

I was recently tasked with writing up Kaname for Seattle Met’s Asian food feature, and the experience reminded me just how winning happy hour at this ID hole-in-the-wall really is.

From 5 to 6:30pm daily, bar snacks are between $2 and $4.50. If you’re going for the fried food—and, unless the doctor is dictating otherwise, I think you should—the croquettes, stuffed with potato and ground beef, are recommended. They’re like panko-crusted, individually portioned shepherd’s pies without the creepy peas and carrots. And the fried-chicken bites (tori no karaage) are great when perked up with a squeeze of lemon. Alternatively, choose healthier treats like $3.50 maki rolls, edamame, and broiled nettlefish (sanma shio yaki). Agedashi tofu is deep-fried, yes, but also tofu. And only $3 per order.

Kaname is small, narrow, wood-floored, nothing fancy. It’s a place where ordering a 16-ounce Sapporo feels like the right thing to do. One of those will run you $3 during HH.