A Shot and a Beer for Six Bucks or Less in Tucson

15 spots to get a pour of whiskey and a beer back on the cheap

Last modified on October 9th, 2018 at 1:42 pm

The economy might be booming, but hard-working Tucsonans always want to know where to drink on the efficient — as in, where to get a domestic economic deal, on the double.

As it happens, there’s no shortage of options of where to get a two-fer. Here’s a slew of choices.

The District Tavern reopened on North Stone Avenue as District Tavern Eats in September, and they’ve since announced that they are keeping their infamous special of Miller High Life with a shot of Old Crow whiskey, originally $3.

It worked for them for 10 years before they closed their Congress Street doors in 2015, and it’ll probably work again. But while they were out, competition for tavern-goers’ dollars has grown ever fiercer, and other bars have seen and raised the District’s whiskey/beer-pair hand.

Here’s a guide to where you can get a pour of whiskey and a beer back (or even a pint) for double the District’s deal, or less. Some of these spots might be surprising.

Tough Luck Club

101 E. Pennington St.

The — literally — underground Tough Luck Club hideaway beneath Reilly Craft Pizza and Drink will improve your fortune with what the speakeasy simply calls “The Special.” The $4 (plus tax) deal is liquid Americana — a can of Coors Banquet and a shot of Mellow Corn bottled-in-bond corn whiskey. Wallet padded, kismet upped.

Keep up with Tough Luck Club on Facebook.

Bambi Bar

5050 E. Speedway Blvd.

The Bambi doesn’t have a specific ‘shot and a beer’ package deal per se, but you can amalgamate one with a little animal instinct. A well shot — house liquor — is $3.50 and a domestic beer is $2.25.

Che’s Lounge

350 N. Fourth Ave.

In the dark rebel haven that is Che’s, you can get a PBR and well whiskey for $5, any time, any day.

¡Viva Tucson! ¡Viva la revolución! And ¡Viva Che’s! for keeping us borracho for 18 years now. And remember, it’s customary to toast the crazy two-headed sheep painting over the bar. Or it is now? ¡Salud!

Keep up with Che’s Lounge on Facebook.

The Shelter Cocktail Lounge

4155 E. Grant Rd.
(Credit: The Shelter Cocktail Lounge on Facebook)

(Credit: The Shelter Cocktail Lounge on Facebook)

The Shelter has a lot of happy hours. But on Wednesdays, the Shelter has happy hour all day and night. This involves $1 off all whiskeys, so for our purposes here, a well whiskey and a Tecate would come out to $5.50. Math comes in handy after all.

Keep up with The Shelter Cocktail Lounge on Facebook.

World Famous Golden Nugget

2617 N. First Ave.

Regular prices at the Nugget are rock-bottom economical so you’ve hit the jackpot without even scoring an official combo.

Before 7 p.m all their wells are $3.25, and draft pints of domestic beer are $2.75. As long as you can get there early enough, you’ve got a shot and a full beer for $6 flat. Now you know why it’s world famous.

For more information, visit goldennuggettucsonbar.com.

Owls Club

236 S. Scott Ave.

You thought Owls Club was fancy, but it turns out you don’t even have to crack into what’s left of your dwindling nest egg to drink at Owls Club.

Hoooo knew that you can fly on in and catch a buzz on the super cheep? A PBR and pour of Cabin Still bourbon is only $3, so you can actually get two beers and two whiskeys for $6! Poof, you’re wise! Whoooooo-hooooo!

For more information, visit owlsclubwest.com.

Tommy’s Saloon

2747 N. Stone Ave.

Tommy’s might not look like much from the outside, but they don’t skimp and definitely don’t overcharge.

At any moment, you can get a well whiskey and a domestic pint on tap for $5.50. During happy hour, the combo is only $5.

Better yet, the domestic choices are Rolling Rock, Amber Bock, Bud, and Bud Light — not just the one flat keg beer the bar’s been trying to get rid of.

Happy hour is Monday and Tuesday from 5 – 7 p.m., and Wednesday through Friday from 4 – 8 p.m.

Keep up with Tommy’s Saloon on Facebook.

Surly Wench Pub

424 N. Fourth Ave.

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The Wench’s Double Fister deal will make you see double. It’s only $4 for a PBR and a shot of Ten High whiskey, all the time.

The hangover might be throbbing, but when morning rolls around you’ll be relieved at the amount of money you saved while attempting to keep down last night’s tater tots.

For more information, visit surlywenchpub.com.

Mr. Head’s Art Gallery and Bar

513 N. Fourth Ave.

Here’s another spot on Fourth Avenue that serves what has apparently become a classic — PBR plus well whiskey.

Mr. Head’s serves more beer with their ‘shot and a beer’ combo package than most of the other bars, providing a 20-ounce PBR alongside their well whiskey shot. It’s $5 for both, all day, every day.

The combo is only $4 during happy hour, which runs from 1 p.m. – 8 p.m. on weekdays, and all day on Sunday. Plus, the cool art adds enlightenment to your not-so-culture-heavy beverages of choice.

Keep up with Mr. Head’s Art Gallery and Bar on Facebook.

The Buffet Bar and Crockpot

538 E. Ninth St.

It should come as no surprise that The Buffet would have a beer-and-whiskey discount combo. But who knew it would be classy?

You can get a shot of well whiskey with an 8-ounce Coors back for $4 — or upgrade to Maker’s Mark bourbon with the same beer back for only $4.75. With all the money you’re saving, you can even splurge on a hot dog.

Keep up with The Buffet Bar and Crockpot on Facebook.

Cans Deli

340 N. Fourth Ave.

Not to be outdone by its neighbors right from the get-go, Cans Deli —relative newcomers to the Fourth Avenue scene — offers a shot of well whiskey and a PBR (in a can, of course) for a mere $5.

This pairs quite nicely with a kosher-ish deli sandwich on Jewish rye and an a cappella blues group or handcrafted yoga reggae or whatever they’ve got going on in the back that night.

For more information, visit cansdeli.com.

Nancy’s Boondocks

3306 N. First Ave.

Nancy’s offers a well whiskey (any well liquor, actually) with an 8-ounce beer back for $3.50. Higher-shelf selections with a beer back start at only $1 more.

It would be pretty easy to get boondockled — a new word created after two rounds of those combo deals, clearly.

For more information, visit nancysboondocks.com.

The Hut

305 N. Fourth Ave.

While it’s only on Thursdays starting at 8 p.m., The Hut serves $3 Jack Daniels and a $3 domestic, local, or import draft pint — you can mix and match to your giant tiki head’s content. And if you don’t see the giant tiki head (which is laden with Tucson tradition and lore), you should not be drinking anymore.

Keep up with The Hut on Facebook.

Welcome Diner

902 E. Broadway Blvd.

If you want some jackfruit fries or creole jambalaya to accompany your beer-whiskey combo for a change, you have the option at Welcome Diner.

From 3 – 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 3 until closing on weekends, you can get your 16-ounce PBR and Evan Williams-shot package deal for only $5.

Food’s optional but recommended, both for flavor and the sake of your functionality in the morning.

For more information, visit welcomediner.net.

Sky Bar

536 N. Fourth Ave.

Sky Bar’s happy hour is everyday from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. and again from 4 – 7 p.m. It also occurs during certain other seemingly random times of the day and night (perhaps coinciding with astronomical events, it’s unclear). Sky Bar offers $1 off draft beers and $3 wells. Other times, they offer really cheap well shots.

Some of their drafts are regularly priced at $4 or less, so you can mix up a combo deal for $6 or less.

It’s as complicated as predicting the next time an asteroid is going to hit the earth, or as simple — you can almost always get a beer and a shot of whiskey for $6 or less unless you’re really freaking unlucky. In which case, kick back, listen to some music or watch some anime the bar’s showing, grab some Brooklyn Pizza, and wait an hour or two.

For more information, visit skybartucson.com.

Angela Orlando is an anthropologist and world traveler who owns Women’s Wilderness Writing Workshops creative glamping retreats. She’s into all things plant- and animal- and food-related, especially when cheese is somehow involved.
  • TiroGrande

    Doesn’t make much difference now, but I remember Looong Tiiime ahhhgo, there was a sandwich sign on the sidewalk in front of the old Grant Road Tavern,
    “Shot and Beer-$1.25”. They had a couple of big stand up freezers full of mugs, you got a frozen one with every beer. Day’s gone by, I really miss ’em. And, I can still remember the joint was on Grant Rd.!

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