ETA is one of the newer and best LA bars; it’s located on Figueroa Street, across from the Highland Park Bowl. The space was previously occupied by a small boutique, so the bar has a cozy feel to it. ETA offers classic cocktails like the Mint Julep and Pisco Sour, as well as signature cocktails. Wines by the glass and beer are also available, as well as sandwiches and appetizers to go along with your drink. Live jazz is played for your listening enjoyment on Mondays and Tuesdays starting at 9 pm. Happy hour is 6 to 8 pm everyday.
The Walker Inn
The Walker Inn in Koreatown is a wood-paneled lounge that is mysteriously hidden away behind a locked entrance labeled “Secret Door.” You can get there by going through the Normandie Club and pressing a buzzer beside the secret door. Presto, you’re led into a wonderful world of cocktail tasting. Think 5, 6, or 7 course meal, but with cocktails instead. Drink combinations are based around a seasonal or conceptual theme, and are served with snacks. Reservations are required for the tasting menu, which is served at the bar counter from Sunday through Thursday, 7pm or 9pm. The cost is either $40 or $70 depending on your choice of the short or long version of the tasting. You can also just hang out in the lounge and enjoy a classic mai tai or martini, made with top-notch liquor by expert mixologists.
Verlaine in West Hollywood took the place of Dominick’s, a legendary Italian restaurant that was a favorite of locals and celebrities alike. The Rat Pack crew, Marilyn Monroe, and Sean Penn were all frequent visitors. Verlaine has been a fixture in West Hollywood since 1948. The owner(s) did an awesome job of updating the space with a patio area and a bar space, similar to what was already there. The cocktail menu’s been updated as well, with distinctive drinks and lots of Aperol drinks with Champagne.
Woodley Proper is located in a strip mall in the San Fernando Valley and serves up one of a kind cocktails and drinks typically found in a bar. The difference at Woodley Proper? That average bar drink is taken up a notch or two, as far as presentation and taste. The bar also offers a range of eats, as well as main courses and seafood. Happy hour specials run throughout the week in addition to discounts for workers in the hospitality industry.
Cafe Brass Monkey
If you love karaoke and the occasional surprise of hearing the next big singer on the scene, visit this bar. The Cafe Brass Monkey located on Wilshire Boulevard in Koreatown, attracts not only patrons looking for a few drinks and some entertainment, but talented singers looking to exercise their vocal cords while waiting for their big break. It’s a very low-key environment for those that are a bit shy. The space isn’t large so get there early if you want to sing or catch the show in its entirety. Otherwise, just sit back, relax, and enjoy one of the over 70 varieties of fun and creative cocktails offered.
Catch on Melrose in West Hollywood is one of the most popular spots in Los Angeles. If you’re lucky enough to get in, you might run into a celebrity or two. Rooftop dining and great views of Hollywood and surrounding areas add to Catch’s appeal. Their cocktail menu is just as fabulous, with drinks infused with a variety of liquors and fresh fruits and ingredients.
Salazar combines delicious Mexican mesquite grilled dishes with Mexican inspired cocktails. One of the newer spots, they opened for business in May of 2016. The cocktails alone are worth the visit, as they’re concocted by well known bartender Brandi Boles. Familiar ingredients include tequila, lime, and salt, combined with a host of other interesting ingredients like ancho chili, huitlachoche, and Mexican fernet. Their cocktails have a very unique flavor. Classic cocktails such as margaritas are also available.
The Spare Room
Visit the Spare Room on a weekend night and enjoy the historic bowling alley/gaming room that’s housed in the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. The hotel is located in the very touristy area where you will also find the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The Spare Room has been beautifully refurbished and still retains touches of the Hollywood golden age, such as vintage bowling lanes. You will also find timeless gems like Connect Four in the gaming room. Food and refreshments reminiscent of a time long ago will wet your appetite.Good Housekeeping
Located in a small building on Figueroa Street in the Highland Park neighborhood of L.A., Good Housekeeping is a quiet, candle-lit bar with a very laidback atmosphere. The decor even though modest, is stylish and has an upscale feel. It’s tucked away inside a coverted retail space so maybe a bit hard to find. The space was used for a discount furniture store before being renovated and the bar owners just kept that name. The cocktail menu changes often and is made up of original mixtures as well as fun versions of classic drinks.
71Above, one of the best Los Angeles bars, is situated on top of the U.S. Bank Tower and boasts spectacular views of Los Angeles. The cocktails are equally as awesome with names and ingredients inspired by different neighborhoods in the city. For example, the West Hollywood contains Ultimat Vodka, Cranberry Granita Ketel, One Vodka, Apple Brandy, lemon, grapefruit, Lime Lillet Blanc, and Apple-Cinnamon Cordial. The Venice is made with Kate Grossman Belvedere Vodka, lime, Hibiscus-Infused Plymouth Gin, St. Geroge Bruto Ginger Syrup, Tru Roots Ginger Beer, Lacey Kombucha, Cinnamon-Pear, and Capertif, and the Echo Park consists of El Jimador Blanco, cinnamon, lemon, El Silencio Mezcal, La Caravedo Pisco, Sweet Vermouth, Aperol, Faire la Fête Brut Chareau Aloe, cinnamon, and lime. Reservations are recommended, especially if you prefer a window table. Check the dress code before going.
Everson Royce Bar
Everson Royce is a neighborhood bar located in the artsy section of downtown L.A. Their open bar offers skillfully made cocktails and next level shot-and-a-beer mixtures. The bar food is outstanding and prepared by one of L.A.’s best chefs, Matt Molino. You can get one of downtown’s best burgers here, as well as delicious appetizers. Visit during their happy hour Monday through Friday from 5 to 7 pm and get a cocktail or glass of wine for $7.
Bar Marmont is the bar in the infamous Chateau Mormont Hotel. This bar has a long history of bad behavior and was once a favorite of some of the most well known celebrities in Hollywood. It’s also the site of some tragic occurrences, but aside from that, it’s still a Sunset strip institution that’s insanely popular, requiring a reservation. Try to snag a seat on the terrace to enjoy the L.A. sunshine. You will find the food, drinks, and parking to be a bit pricey, but the price is inclusive of the one of a kind experience you can only get at Chateau Mormont.
Musso & Frank Grill
Musso & Frank Grill has long been one of the best eating establishments as well as one of the best bars in Los Angeles. The bar employs one of the longest-standing bartenders in the city and he’s served some of the biggest names in Hollywood. The other bartenders have been there for ages as well, honing their skills to deliver the perfect drink of your choice. Musso and Frank has been serving Hollywood since 1919 and it’s been reported that they make the best martini in America.
Kettle Black on Sunset Blvd is a great spot to hang out with friends or to bring a dinner date; it’s actually a charming Italian restaurant with a huge and impressive bar space that holds just about every kind of liquor you can think of. Their cocktail menu includes beer on tap as well as by the bottle, dinner port wines, infused cocktails, and vintage cocktails. One of the best LA bars.
Gold Diggers is a very cool neighborhood bar on Santa Monica Boulevard that was revamped from what was once a strip club and dingy dive bar. This space was also once used by filmmaker Ed Wood as a studio. The interior of the bar was stripped down to reveal beautifully wallpapered walls still intact, and much was done to restore the space to bring back its original charm. The drinks are reasonably priced and strong and entertainment includes DJs playing tunes, disco and funk on Fridays and metal every other Saturday.