Looking for less mainstream, but awesome bars in LA
I'm going on my first trip to LA (for business) with 3 other coworkers, and I'm trying to get a couple of options together. Looking for some less mainstream bars that only LA natives would know of. Not necessarily dive-y or a hole in the wall; I'm aiming for super cool, swanky, awesome cocktails, intimate... food would be bonus, but not a must.
Also, I'm trying to gather some options for great restaurants. One of our group wants to go to Bottega Louie, as it's her favorite so we've got that down. Two of us don't like sushi and generally aren't crazy about Asian. I love trying new things and am totally not picky.
We'll be staying at the Millenium Biltmore, walking distance from the office, and we won't mind venturing out at night but we'd like to stay pretty much downtown.
Any suggestions would be awesome! Thank you in advance to anyone who replies!
I think I understand the kind of places you are looking for. However, it is a little difficult to know for sure how much some one from out of town would or would not know about certain joints in L.A. in these days of the internets. But here is another stab at downtown.
The Falls (no food)
Harvard & Stone (no food)
Church & State
For a $25 cab ride, transport you & your friends to mid-century LA at the Tiki Ti. Not swanky, but strong tropical drinks in a tiny venue -- a true classic. Cash only. Call first to make sure they're open. Beware: their drinks pack a wallop. Get a couple Ray's Mistakes and have fun.
4427 West Sunset Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Pretty mainstream at this point, but Seven Grand is a cool spot, and right across the street from Bottega C.K.
Other spots (again, not sure if too mainstream but cool. Downtown LA spots at the top, marked with the word "Downtown"...)
Golden Gopher -- Downtown
Broadway Bar -- Downtown
The Down And Out -- Downtown
Casey's Irish Bar -- Downtown
Bar 107 -- Downtown
The York -- Highland Park
Verdugo Bar -- Glassell Park
Eagle Rock Brewery -- Glassell Park
The Bigfoot Lodge -- Atwater
HMS Bounty -- Koreatown
The Alibi Room (home of Kogi tacos) -- Culver City
The Brig -- Venice
i heard they served pretty good fried chicken too. but i never really hung out that often at leimert park, usually my main reason to go there for years was to go to Phillip's but now i usually just go to the one off of the 10 Fwy bc it's just much more convenient.
has babe's and ricky's resurfaced anywhere else ?
I'm afraid not.
The Leimert Park area is full of great finds...and if it resurfaced I can't think of anywhere it'd fit the same as it did there.
There was just this history about the place and Laura Mae that was iconic (she passed on @89) still running it. The fried chicken, the catfish, the collard greens and the cornbread....all delicious along with the best blues anywhere in LA.
That's a blast from the past we use to hang at Babe and Ricky's when they were at their original location.
The coolest of the cool bars was even cooler when it was on Central
Chicken night was great. Admission was one dollar and you got a ticket that included the chicken dinner.
what to order? tell the nice lady server what sort of things you like and have the bartender make dealer's choice. when to go? during the week it's less crowded. get there at 8 p.m. when it opens. you can't stand at the bar, so you don't have to worry about that.
your drink will take a bit longer than you're probably used to to arrive.
I'm not a barfly, but happened to be downtown in Pershing Square looking at some office space in an atmospheric old art deco-looking building. They had a great looking rooftop bar called Perch, with fabulous views, which is relatively new on the L.A. scene. Not sure that it is "super cool", to me that means tourists and posers, but it seemed like a classy place, and the space is fantastic. Relatively less known than other haunts, but by no means undiscovered.
just as a general rule:
<< less mainstream bars that only LA natives would know of>>
<< super cool, swanky, awesome cocktails>>
not too many secrets around here. . . . .
most of the time, when someplace really good opens, it is jammed by week 2.
there is a lot of pent up demand for something awsome.
also, re: bottega louie,
the take of that place is decidely mixed,
ANDit is far from being a place that is "less mainstream."
Border Grill downtown has some tasty cocktails.
Folks speak highly of The Edison but I've never been.
Chaya's bar (downtown) is fun and with great food and wine. I have not had their mixed drinks.
You won't make it there (too far) but Sedthee Thai in Glendale has amazing drinks. Their elixir, with vodka, coconut liquor, fresh lemongrass and herbs is stunning - and I can't believe i can get it in Glendale!
OH and the revamped coles is getting good marks for it's cocktails - go there for iconic fun : )
How about The Standard's rooftop bar, for ubercool fun?
It just won TOTC best bar of America. That is about as mainstream (read: hipster) cocktail as it comes. There's quaint, and there's claustrophobic.
For WeHo hotness and a view, Eveleigh. For a quainter Hollywood, The Pikey. For the latest/greatest, The Parish, DTLA.
Unknown "super cool, swanky" bar with "awesome cocktails" does not exist in LA. As an alternative, you could chose awesome restaurant bars -- Hungry Cat, Jar, Lucques, and Providence all have very capable bar keeps.