Sometimes where to be seen is not always the best hangout. LA, which has an exciting nightlife, is often shadowed by where the celebs and local stars visit. So, what makes the best hangouts these days? The new and notable, better than pub fare, creative cocktails and location seem to top the list. These five bars welcome hipsters and regulars alike.
351 N. Fairfax Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Plan Check is a newish Fairfax district hotspot that blends vintage architectural office elements with industrial pieces in a modern and lively environment. The neighborhood bar and kitchen takes its bar program quite seriously with a dramatic 40-seat bar, a perfect social arena to meet and greet. Craft beers are available including local guys Smog City Brewery and Angel City Brewery, as well as small boutique wineries. Cocktail Chef Matthew Biancaniello, known for his creativity at the Library Bar in Hollywood’s Roosevelt Hotel, manages Plan Check’s bar program. Signature cocktails are aplenty including Fish Out of Water (bonito-infused famous grouse, agave syrup, lemon and shiso), Breeder’s Cup (Tito’s vodka, lime, agave syrup, cucumber, applewood smoked salt and beet horseradish) and a wide selection of Japanese whiskeys (Hibiki, Nikka, Yamazaki) and single-malt varieties aged 19 years or more. Happy hour and late-night food menus are available as well.
The Thirsty Crow
2939 Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
As one of Silverlake’s best known bars, The Thirsty Crow oozes hipsterness. From the crowd, to the specialty drinks and the attire the bartenders can be seen in, the bar is easily one of our top picks. Want to try out a specialty cocktail? Try out the ‘Ernesto Hemingway by Geoffrey Smyser’ or their signature Old Fashioned which will have you coming back time and time again.
The Misfit Restaurant & Bar
225 Santa Monica Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90401
Located in Santa Monica’s historic clock tower building, which once housed Bay Cities Guaranty and Loan Association, The Misfit is a true and trendy Westside place to be. Whether it is lunch on a Tuesday ($5 Misfit burger when you sit at the bar), an almost TGIF night out or on the weekend, hipsters come out for The Misfit’s dark bar and restaurant environment, the full bar selection and the incredible eats. Specialty cocktails like the basil gimlet, a signature white sangria and Pimm’s punch are easily complemented by The Misfit’s bacon-wrapped dates or skinny skinny French fries.
1515 Abbott Kinney Blvd.
Venice, CA 90291
The Brig, a downtown Venice bar, brings the community together. A pool table, live DJ and local bands fill the laid-back atmosphere, where bartenders often know your name. The Brig appeals to Westsiders for its beachy social vibe, and patrons are not afraid to get on the dance floor. Beers, ales and classic drinks are always available. On Abbott Kinney Boulevard, food trucks come out for First Fridays of the month, and Brig patrons make it a tradition to grab and go food truck grub while in the hood.
12236 Washington Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90066
Hipsters from around L.A. come to hang out in the Alibi Room. The stylish but casual scene gives guests an intimate bar to see old friends, meet up with work colleagues or grab a glass of wine with a new friend. The Alibi Room offers guests quite a selection of craft beers, cocktails and wine while also serving Kogi Korean BBQ & Chego (by Roy Choi) bites like kimchi sesame quesadillas, Korean spiced fries, Koji sliders (short rib, bbq chicken or spicy pork), hashbrown and egg breakfast burritos, crispy hot wings and Koji taco combos.
8422 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
Goldie’s mixologist and cocktail program manager Brittini Rae Peterson gives the community-based restaurant a different edge. Named as bartender of the year and best new mixologist, Peterson is always inspired when it comes to creating a great cocktail (California Aurora, a state lager made with CA poppy oil, wildflower honey, fresh sage, apricot and apertivo). The snack menu is excellent to share with your group. You’ll find a grilled flatbread complemented by ricotta, honey and fresh herbs, as well as the house-curated charcuterie serving pate, bresaola, smoked pork rillettes, prosciutto and smoky grilled bread. Goldie’s is just the right place for California hanging with its intimate patio (heated on chilly days) and community-style seating.
Related: Best Outdoor Dining In LA
Red Lion Tavern
2366 Glendale Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90039
Located in Silverlake, Red Lion Tavern is about as hipster as you’re going to get. With its dark wood interior and waitresses dressed in a German theme, this bar draws a great crowd and comes complete with TV’s to watch sports as well.
The Silverlake Lounge
2906 Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Home to music almost every night, The Silverlake Lounge is one of Silverlake’s best known hipster bars. Chances are that most up and coming bands have at one time or another played the lounge in addition to more well known acts. Drinks are known to be cheap as well.
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