West Hollywood is a great place to live, and an even better place to eat. While it’s easy enough to hop in your car and drive to Thai Town or the Asian stretch of Olympic and chow down for cheap, why not unearth the great deals that are hidden right under our noses?
For those in the know, The Hudson already has a number of connotations, and very few of them have to do with the food. A major hotspot for Young Hollywood, this is the place to watch tightly wound agency assistants and desperate young actors drink away their anxiety and stumble head-first into one another, with a well-placed photo booth poised to capture all sorts of degenerate behavior.
That said, if you show up a little earlier in the evening, before the noise level rises from loud to catatonic, you can enjoy some truly delicious gastro-pub fare. And if you’re there during the 4-7 p.m. Happy Hour, the food (and drinks) come at a fraction of the cost.
The food at The Hudson is much, much better than it needs to be, and the Happy Hour menu features a nice selection of their most popular dishes for only $6 a pop.
The best bang for your buck has to be the mussels and french fries—a generous solo portion of plump steamed mussels with a rich, fragrant broth, topped off with a big ol’ pile of their excellent French fries.
There’s no wrong way to eat this dish, but I have to recommend saving a good portion of the fries for the end and drowning them in the leftover broth. Traditionally, steamed seafood broth is sopped up with chunks of bread, but French fries are just as porous, and a perfect vehicle for imbibing every drop of this garlicky elixir.
There are plenty of other options on the $6 menu, including jalapeno mac and cheese, fried chicken sliders, and short-rib tacos. Even the lighter choices, like the grilled tuna and green bean salad (a sort of elegant take on a salad nicoise), would cost at least twice as much anywhere else.
Happy Hour also features drinks for only $3, so you can pair your dish up and still come in under $10. For the mussels, the subtle flavor shouldn’t be overpowered, so it’s best to go with either white wine or a light, delicate beer like a Hefeweizen.
None of these plates are huge, so this is not going to be a super-filling dinner. But with a place like The Hudson, you can seamlessly transition from “dinner” portion of your night and the “going out” portion, and, in that case, you don’t want too much food weighing you down. The photo booth beckons.
TIME: Happy Hour (4-7 p.m. nightly)
MEAL: Steamed mussels with French fries, glass of wine or beer