click to enlarge Softshell Crab

Jonathan boncek

Softshell Crab

Pier 41 has arguably the best happy hour in town. What sounds like hyperbole can be backed up by fact: $1 oysters and $1 champagne from 4-6 p.m. every day they’re open, including Friday and Saturday nights. The defense rests. And the defense apologizes for likely making the line even worse. They also have a Bloody Mary that will put all other Bloodys to shame, and will make you the queen or king of Instagram for a day. The monster is $35 and is both a cocktail and a meal. Weighing in at 20 ounces, it’s got Dixie pepper vodka and enough Armoracia rusticana to choke a horse. But the murky beverage also comes with a delightful spread, all perched on top: four fried oysters, three chilled shrimp, and a giant king crab leg. It’s the kind of thing that makes adjoining tables order what she’s having. The best part is the food is solid: The oysters are crisp, yet juicy, and the peel-and-eat shrimp are paired with pepperoncini, an unexpectedly agreeable sweet foil. And did I mention the king crab leg? You had me at king crab leg. —Vanessa Wolf (Dish, Summer 2018)

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