Three Bars to Try This Weekend in Los Angeles

Three Bars to Try This Weekend in Los Angeles

Every week, Eater editors offer spots to drink over the weekend.

By the time Friday finally comes around, we here at Eater LA start to get pretty darn thirsty. After drinking our way around town, we’re here to be your guide to the city’s best watering holes, whether it be a craft beer mecca or a hidden speakeasy for cult rums. Yup, we’ve officially become your favorite drinking companion.

Here now, three bars to try this weekend in Los Angeles:

February 5, 2016

For a red sauce joint you never knew had rock n roll vibes: Jones

[Photo: Elizabeth Daniels]

We have all at least heard of Jones Hollywood, a staple addition to Santa Monica Boulevard known for its solid rendition of spaghetti and meatballs and pretty outstanding pie. But not everyone knows that come 10 pm, a bouncer sets up shop outside the door, and the bar becomes an impenetrable mass of mingling patrons. With chill rock n roll tunes and the option to order a pizza with your whisky, there are few better places to spend a Friday night. 7205 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood —CC

For your next Koreatown craft beer crawl: Beer Belly

At some point this weekend, you should shoulder your way into Beer Belly, the crowded Koreatown craft beer haven with the colorful details and the expansive taplist. Yes, you can hold for a table and down fries, duck, and gloriously greasy sandwiches, but what you should really do is grab a beer, or three, and try to end up somewhere near the bar. That’s where the action is, where craft beer heads gather to talk about the latest new release or the next tap takeover. You can learn a lot, just standing there, while you sip from some of California (and thus the world’s) best breweries. 532 S. Western Ave., Koreatown. —FE

For when you want to celebrate with a cigar and scotch: Ten Pound

Ten Pound

Photo: Yelp

LA thankfully has some prime indoor/outdoor spaces where cigar smokers and scotch aficionados can find some kind of refuge. Yes, it’s a certain kind of vibe at these sort of spots, like the man-cave also known as Buena Vista in Beverly Hills. But if you’re willing to shell out about $100 for an out of this world experience, check out Ten Pound, located just above Scarpetta in the Montage Beverly Hills.

The prices are astronomical, but you do get an amazing set of bar bites with every order, plus personalized service in cushy cabanas that overlook the parklet outside. The Macallan presense is strong here, with unique bottles you won’t find anywhere else, though you can also get a world-beating Manhattan if you want. Sometimes you just want that baller experience, and though it’s not cheap, it’s good to have something like Ten Pound there for when you need to seal the deal or hang out with friends. 225 N Canon. —MK

January 29, 2016

For laid back vibes and a prime education in standout cocktails: The Corner Door

[Photo: Elizabeth Daniels]

Beau du Bois has earned a fair share of praise recently, what with his winning of Eater LA’s own Bartender of the Year Eater Award last year. The praise is certainly merited — du Bois is turning out some of the best cocktails in the city. Whether you’re looking to for a perfect first date restaurant or relaxed spot to share a meaning conversation with friends, The Corner Door is the epitome of your friendly neighborhood go-to, just with much better drinks. 12477 W Washington Blvd Los Angeles —CC

For a populist take on the great American Whiskey bar: Seven Grand

Seven Grand

[Photo: Seven Grand]

Forget stuffy spots with high price points and snooty bartenders. At Seven Grand, right on 7th Street across from Bottega Louie in Downtown, it’s all about the people. There are whiskeys at every price point, served straight up or in a cocktail, and you can even play pool if you’d like. Mostly industry types prefer instead to simply pull up a seat at the bar and sip away with a friend or two — without, you know, breaking the bank in the process. 515 W. 7th St., Downtown. — FE

For one last taste of Julian Cox’s magnificent cocktails: The Fiscal Agent

The Fiscal Agent Julian Cox

[Photo: Wonho Frank Lee]

Julian Cox’s impact on the LA cocktail scene is incalculable because he’s influenced and created drink menus at restaurants and lounges across the city. The Fiscal Agent is his most personal work, the final act before he withdraws from L.A. for a great gig at Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises in Chicago. Cox has been making the rounds across town, hitting important restaurants and saying goodbye to colleagues, but on the weekend, he’s been mixing drinks at Studio City’s Agent, including a pitch perfect mixed cocktail called The Chappelle Show. If you ask nicely, you can opt for a bartender’s choice recalling his favorite creations from years past, like a Rivera’s Cup. Be sure to make a reservation on Opentable to secure a seat. 11801 Ventura Blvd. —MK [Photo: Wonho Frank Lee]

January 22, 2016

For
booze and bowling in Prohibition-era digs: The Spare Room

[Photo: The Spare Room]

It feels unjust to categorize The Spare Room as a mere hotel bar. Located on the mezzanine of the iconic Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, The Spare Room is a fun-loving paradise of booze and board games. But that’s not all, the pièce de résistance of the bar is a set of reclaimed bowling lanes that date back to the 1800s. Order a punch bowl to share, dust off those bowling shoes, and enjoy a different kind of night out. 7000 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles —CC

For a trio of power players making Mexican-inspired fare inside an LA institution: El Chavo

[Photo: El Chavo]

We’ve now gotten a peek into the future of El Chavo in Los Feliz, and things certainly look bright. That’s thanks in part to Brandyn Tepper, the Cocktail Academy barman who’s now doing drinks at the longtime spot, alongside tacos from Freddy Vargas and seafood from the Ceviche Project team. Tepper is working with a lot of Mexican spirits to keep the vibe alive, including the Oaxacan Old Fashioned, made with tequila and agave. 4441 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Feliz. —FE

For a low-key Westside(ish) spot with underrated drinks: Sausal

[Photo: Wonho Frank Lee]

The area around El Segundo, Playa Vista, and the overall southern edge of the Westside is coming up thanks to Silicon Beach and a renewed sense of quality. Downtown El Segundo, a sleepier stretch just a short drive from LAX, has a new addition in Sausal that sports some underrated drinks. This weekend they’re rocking a $39 dineLA dinner menu while their moderately priced cocktails (nothing over $12) might mean you’re sipping the rye-based Future Fix, mixing agave and fresno chili, or colorful L.A. Fix, with strawberry, gin, cucumber, and lemon. While the cocktails won’t blow you away, they don’t really have to. The drinks are there to be boozy companions to the comfort-inducing “rancho” style cuisine that’s really gussied up Cali-Mex. We’re more than OK with that. 219 Main St, El Segundo —MK

January 15, 2016

For a neon-lit night in the heart of Hollywood: Frolic Room

[Photo: Yelp]

Now that former beverage director Damian Windsor has left Clifton’s Cafeteria, you might just be able to spot him behind the bar at cocktail dive legend Frolic Room, which sits right next door to the Pantages Theater on Hollywood Boulevard. Known for its stiff drinks and low-key clientele, the bar opened in 1934 and still plays to packed audiences before and after showtimes. Slip in early for a drink before heading on to all points elsewhere. 6245 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood. — FE

For a swanky mid-century Hollywood vibe without any hype: Minibar

Minibar Hollywood

Minibar is that underrated neighborhood gem of a bar that you would just love to slip into on a weeknight, with stiff Manhattans and well-shaken cocktails in a small, but not cramped room at the Hollywood Hills hotel on Franklin. The ambiance is killer, the with a tasteful mid-century feel that’s a bit appropriate for the later seasons of Mad Men (as in, closer to the start of the 1970s). On the weekends, things get a little more energetic, but barman Jeremy Allen makes some fun, approachable beverages that fuses quality booze into sparkling glassware. The Alpine Hippie Juice is a colorful oddball that mixes Alpine herbal liqueur with cassis and lime, which works as a refresher starter or a kind of end of night sipper. Oh, and the “delicious” popcorn is something you can’t resist once you start knocking drinks back. Just try it and you’ll see. —MK [Photo: Matthew Kang]

January 8, 2016

For dive bar vibes and killer fried chicken: Crawfords

[Photo: Instagram]

Now open nightly from 5 p.m. on, Crawfords could well become Westlake’s best new hang. Situated across the street from the original Tommy’s on Beverly, the dive bar space has been cleaned up (but not too much) by Dustin Lancaster of Covell, Augustine, and L&E fame. Red booths now run against one long wall, while the rest of the space is for bar seating only — unless you also count the pool table and pre-Buck Hunter shooter game. Better still: drinks are plentiful, and cheap. 2616 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles. — FE

For fresh Julian Cox drinks on the Westside: The Rose

The Rose Venice Jason Neroni

[Photo: Wonho Frank Lee]

Venice finally has some Julian Cox (and fellow mixologist Nick Meyer) drinks to call upon at The Rose, which sports a wide open bar that’s already the hub cocktail mavens on the Westside. Though Jason Neroni hasn’t completely launched a full dinner menu (though he will within the next week or so), evenings still bring a relatively low-key experience for those wanting creative drinks. The Rose Cup is a refreshing take on a Pimm’s Cup, but made bourbon instead of gin, while the Walnut Sidecar is your warm-weather sipper mixing cognac and nocino. 220 Rose Ave, Venice —MK


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