Los Angeles' 11 Best New Bars of 2015

Los Angeles

Los Angeles' 11 Best New Bars of 2015
Los Angeles' 11 Best New Bars of 2015

Danny Jensen/Thrillist (edited)
Danny Jensen/Thrillist (edited)

You definitely drank this year, but remembering where can be tricky. That's why we broke it down for you: these are the 11 best new LA bars you stumbled out of in 2015, which means you should make them a priority to stumble back into next year.

Timothy Norris/Thrillist

Break Room 86


Leave it to the Houston bros -- the twins who made Narnia-esque bar entrances par for the course in LA -- to lead you through a vending machine (what?) into the ultimate '80s dreamland, complete with a cassette tape-covered wall and nightly Michael Jackson impersonators. 

Danny Jensen/Thrillist

Idle Hour

North Hollywood

The massive outdoor patio of Idle Hour would make it a contender for this list even if the main bar itself weren't constructed inside a massive whiskey barrel. But it is. 

Dustin Downing/Thrillist

Der Wolfskopf


Pasadena's sort of an LA sleeper-neighborhood: it's full of Hollywood working-class 20-and-30-somethings who are desperate for local spots that are as quality-assured as those that require a train ride to reach. Which is where this beer hall from Ryan Sweeney -- the same dude behind Little Bear and Surly Goat -- comes in. German-style beers, Bavarian food, and zero train time: bingo.

Everson Royce Bar


The first thing you need to know about is the enormous outdoor patio. The second thing you need to know about are the burgers. The third thing you need to know about is the address, because if you're smart you're already on your way to drink wine flights on that patio with that burger.

Courtesy of EP/LP

E.P. & L.P.

West Hollywood

There is no match for the outdoor upstairs patio here, which has, perhaps, West Hollywood's best view of the city plus crazy-good cocktails, like the boozy bubble tea. Also: the downstairs Asian restaurant is no joke. This is a twofer where each one is as good as the sum of their parts.

Courtesy of Minibar



Connected to the 101 Coffee Shop, it feels like evidence of a time when a nightcap was an essential ingredient to a night well spent, which is exactly what you should do at the teeny-tiny bar (it's name is no joke).

Katie Boink Photography

Walker Inn


The award for most unique bar program of the year (and maybe in LA, period) goes to this hidden bar behind Normandie Club, which is doing highly creative omakase cocktails using ingredients and techniques developed at an in-house R&D lab. Seriously.

Jeff Miller/Thrillist

Button Mash


Ain't nothing wrong with a killer barcade, and this one has its nostalgia game on lock, with a slew of old-school games (from Street Fighter II to Pole Position) and craft beer taps to satisfy the pickiest '80s beer geek... and, oh yeah, food from Starry Kitchen, which means there's no reason to leave. Ever.

Courtesy of Guest Room

Guest Room

Santa Monica

The roaring ‘20s-themed spot, located right above Estate, is the Westside’s most exciting mixology bar, and its classic and forward-thinking cocktails make trips Eastside wholly unnecessary. 

Jeff Miller/Thrillist

Beacher's Madhouse


The Roosevelt's re-opened debauchery lounge has flying midgets, panda bears, a daddy dominatrix, and a blow-job room. Seriously. Where's Stefan when you need him?

Sierra Prescott

Fiscal Agent

Studio City

Above Barrel and Ashes is this first-ever standalone bar from Julian Cox, who has been a drinks mastermind for pretty much every restaurant in the city with a great cocktail program. Here, he's doing a small-but-strong cocktail list... unless you ask for the secret menu, which adds 20 more choices. Do it.

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Jeff Miller is the editor of Thrillist LA, and needs to go back to Button Mash to beat his pinball score, stat. Find out when to meet him there at @jeffmillerla on Instagram or @ThrillistLA on Twitter.

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1. Break Room 86 3515 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010 (Koreatown)

Break Room 86 is a blast from the '80s past that comes complete with classic arcade games, themed cocktails, and two karaoke rooms awesomely equipped with Atari.

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2. Idle Hour 4824 Vineland Ave, North Hollywood, CA 91601 (East Valley)

Originally built as a tap room in 1941, Idle Hour has been refurbished and reopened into a shining example of what every bar shaped like a giant whiskey barrel should be. Cocktails on tap, a top-notch patio out back, and even a separate private party annex that's shaped like a giant, pipe-smoking bulldog (everything is shaped like something!!) take this Vineland drinking destination to the next level.

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3. Der Wolfskopf 72 N Fair Oaks Ave, Pasadena, CA 91103 (Pasadena)

This German beer hall in Old Town Pasadena has a lot in store for you -- a spacious hall where you can enjoy tons of German brews, from the rare to the regular, plus hearty eats like schnitzel and Bavarian pretzels. Hidden downstairs is a secret bar that you just might be lucky enough to enjoy, filled with specialty beers, secret craft cocktails, and, thankfully, ALSO hearty eats like schnitzel and Bavarian pretzels.

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4. E.R.B. 1936 E. 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021 (Downtown)

From Matt Molina, a James Beard Award-winning alum of Osteria Mozza, and Randy Clement of Silver Lake Wine, Everson Royce Bar is a relaxed bar with well-constructed cocktails and critically-acclaimed food (especially the burger). The large back patio is a huge draw, complete with picnic tables, wood and brick walls, and a blue bocce court.

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5. E.P. & L.P. 603 N LA Cienega Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069 (West Hollywood)

It's a bit hard to discern which is which at this two-for-one West Hollywood spot. Downstairs is E.P., an Asian restaurant that combines Thai cooking with Chinese, Fijian, and Vietnamese elements. Meanwhile, L.P. is the upstairs patio bar serving up street food small bites and killer cocktails surrounded by stunning views of the Hollywood Hills.

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6. MiniBar 6145 Franklin Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028 (Hollywood)

This tiny little bar is attached to The 101 and it's cocktails are killing the game.

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7. Walker Inn 3612 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90020 (Koreatown)

Pro tip: avoid the crowd at The Normandie Club, hit the buzzer at the back of the bar, and enter The Walker Inn, where your mind will be blown by their unexpected cocktails. The menu is based around an elaborate theme, such as regional climates, and it changes roughly every four to six weeks. Second pro tip: pair your cocktail with the unusual omakase-style pairings at the bar.

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8. Button Mash 1391 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026 (Echo Park)

This Silverlake barcaderestaurant (bar + arcade + restaurant, duh) nails it three ways with food, drink, and games. The Asian-leaning menu, crafted by the critically acclaimed Starry Kitchen duo, features double-fried chicken wings, rice and noodles dishes, and veggie small plates. The throwback games include Donkey Kong, pinball, and the old-school like.

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9. Guest Room 1519 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90403 (Santa Monica)

A "secret" Prohibition-era-themed bar serving up cocktails like the rye/ sherry/ bitters "Devils Candy" as well as shareable plates like a char sui pork flatbread.

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10. Beacher's Madhouse 7000 Hollywood Blvd , Hollywood, CA 90028 (Hollywood)

Beacher's is a Hollywood-fashion LA club that's spinning awesome music, doling out strong libations, and's got FLYING PEOPLE AND OOMPA LOOMPAS.

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11. The Fiscal Agent 11801 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604 (West Hollywood)

Located above BBQ joint Barrel and Ashes, Fiscal Agent's the first standalone bar from cocktail-culture fixture Julian Cox. The impeccably classy hideaway in Studio City is a perfect date spot, complete with memorable drinks and tasty small plates. The drinks are pricey, so it's definitely the kind of place you go to nurse a well-crafted cocktail, not down a bottom-shelf one.