By Maureen Post Special to Published Mar 05, 2010 at 4:38 PM

It’s been a long winter so far. With a sluggish economy and everyone needing to cut back, we’ve been on a quest for a deal from every angle. So, as the door to March opens, and we see spring in our sights, it’s time to take account and rejoice in the great deals pushing us through the winter and leading into spring. Deals, of course, for "Happy Hour." 

For the traveler or the local looking to escape: Cozy up to Clear’s bar, 139 E. Kilbourn St., in the Intercontinental Hotel for double the "Happy Hour." From 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. and again from 9 to 10 p.m., this typically high-end establishment offers a great list of appetizers for just $3 and selected drinks from $2.

For those looking for the best food on a budget:  Yes, they brew their own beer, but Hinterland Erie Street Gastropub, 222 E. Erie St., also deals out cheap yet made in-house, bar specials. They’ve always served $3 pork, beef or seitan tacos on Tuesdays but now they up the ante with Vietnamese pho and potstickers. Choose from vegetarian (seitan) or chicken / pork pho just $5 a bowl or a dozen seitan or pork potstickers for just $3.

For those looking to take a trip back in time: There’s nothing more timeless than a burger and a beer. Stack’d, 170 S. 1st St., adds to the classic theme with nostalgic cans of beer. Opt for vintage versions of Blatz, High Life or Pabst; three cans for just $5 every day during "Happy Hour."

For the sophisticated drinker: There’s nothing wrong with taking "Happy Hour" out of the bar and into the lounge every now and again, and Balzac, 1716 N. Arlington Pl., gives you just the reason to do it. Monday through Friday, chose from a menu of selected bottle and glass pours of wine at half their regular price. Be sure to add the cheese plate.

For those looking to turn from happy to smashed: When dozens of drinks are just a buck and "Happy Hour" lasts six hours, it’s going to take some strong restraint to reel it in and call it a night. Five nights a week, Rascal’s, 2311 N. Murray Ave., keeps you from breaking the bank with $1 deals on taps and rails. Need to wait until the weekend? Enjoy "Happy Hour" deals on Sunday from noon to 2 a.m.

Maureen Post Special to staff writer Maureen Post grew up in Wauwatosa. A lover of international and urban culture, Maureen received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

After living on the east side of Madison for several years, Maureen returned to Milwaukee in 2006.

After a brief stint of travel, Maureen joined as the city’s oldest intern and has been hooked ever since. Combining her three key infatuations, Milwaukee’s great music, incredible food and inspiring art (and yes, in that order), Maureen’s job just about fits her perfectly.

Residing in Bay View, Maureen vehemently believes the city can become fresh and new with a simple move across town.