Drinking games can get a little more sophisticated than Quarters and Beer Pong, though perhaps not much more sophisticated, if Happy Hour: A Cocktail Card Game is any guide. This kit includes a deck of 52 cocktail-themed cards, each one bearing a different recipe for a libation. Themed into 13 cocktail “families” — sours, martinis, tiki drinks, etc. — in groups of 4, the idea is to ask your neighbor, say, “Do you have any shots?” and if he does, he gives it to you. If not, you draw a card. Once you have a set of four, you put it down on the table, and you go around the table until the cards are all gone. That’s pretty much it. While the official rules don’t compel you to mix or consume any of these cocktails, one should assume that most house rules will require something along those lines.
If this sounds familiar, then you too played plenty of Go Fish as a child, which is exactly what this game is — and rest assured that as bar games go, Go Fish gets old, quick. As such, the deck of cards — beautifully illustrated by Marcel George — work better when you throw away the rules and put them to other tasks (though note they do not carry suit or rank like traditional cards do, so you can’t play any traditional card games with them). For example, the old game of “pick a random cocktail from the book” is easier when you can do it by drawing cards — and from which you can easily remove certain selections like, say, all of the ’80s Baileys-based shooters. Note however that while the ingredients for the drinks appear on the cards, you’ll need the companion booklet — or Google — if you want the full recipe for each drink.
It’s not entirely a serious product, but for, say, a stocking stuffer or hostess gift it’s reasonably fun and quirky enough to capture your attention for at least half an hour. Who knows: Have enough of those slippery nipples and it may just find a permanent home on the bar top.
B / $18 [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]