Happiest Hour: Plum wine and sake at The Mustard Seed 

Crisp weather calls for crisp wine and something that burns just a little in your gut—enough to keep you warm. It's the weekend, and here's our suggestion for relaxing with an Asian-styled drink while the leaves keep turning.

What you’re drinking: Takara plum wine served in a wine glass on the rocks with a shot of Ozeki sake, which you can pour into your wine all at once or little by little at your leisure. This isn’t an official drink on the Mustard Seed’s menu, but bartender/bar manager Dan McKittrick assures us it’s an easy order to fill for a mere $5.75.


How it tastes: The plum wine is super sweet, but it’s an aperitif so it’s light and crisp. The sake diffuses the perfume of the wine and adds an edge that seems appropriate for the Asian fare and makes you feel a little more hardcore.

Ambience: The Mustard Seed is the kind of dining cafe where no-fuss Missoulians go on nice dates or for birthday dinners and desserts. You can stop in for a casual lunch at the bar after heading to your favorite stores—or before, if you’re into shopping a little buzzed. Voices carry in the high-ceiling restaurant, so it’s noisy—but in a fun, bustling way. The aroma of teriyaki beef sizzling in woks is a nice touch even if you’re just having a plum wine.

Happy hour: Plum wine and sake are not part of the 4—6 p.m. daily happy hour. You can get $2.50 pints and well drinks, and $3 house wines. But with the plum wine and sake you can order happy hour appetizers such as the California roll or Asian Glazed ribs. Our recommendation: the spicy green beans, which goes well with the plum wine's sweetness.

How to find it: At the south end of the Southgate Mall at at 2901 Brooks Street, near JC Penney’s.

Happiest Hour celebrates western Montana watering holes. To recommend a bar, bartender or beverage for Happiest Hour, email editor@missoulanews.com.

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