For the next time you feel like taking a swift kick to LA's Summer heat groin, here's a list of the best and breeziest beachside bars in LA. Order up a frosty cold beverage, kick off your flippy-floppys, and enjoy the view.
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If you can navigate through the occasional, temporarily Irish bro-down in the downstairs bar, you’ll be rewarded with the riches of a stunning beach view from the upstairs patio. Lose an afternoon during the $5 happy hour with jumbo 23oz domestic brews, or brave the 50oz “world’s largest pint” and be rewarded with a souvenir glass and the strong likelihood of a fully clothed ocean swim.
Fans of shuttered beachside dive The Poop Deck will be pleased by its recent reincarnation, which now features a noticeable lack of, well, poop. Thankfully, the charms of the fish tank behind the bar, the nautical “island” table, and the billiards remain, as do the wallet-friendly prices with the classy addition of more-than-decent wines.
The oldest operating brewpub in SoCal also happens to offer top-notch pints (and pitchers!) right on the beach. Once you’ve adequately sampled their recently revamped offerings on the outdoor patio, order up a growler of your favorite pour to take on a three-hour tour home.
With a massive beer menu that calls for a degree from Beer University and super-sexy views of the LB harbor, this actually-pretty-respectable chain offers a rewarding waterside refuge. Order up one of their signature half-yard pours (why no full yard?) along with an onion ring tower during happy hour, and feel confident that your evening is headed in the right direction.
Belly-up to the cozy bar at this laid-back local favorite, which sits just across from the base of Seal Beach pier and offers panoramic ocean views. Pro tip: order a bacon and shrimp-adorned Bloody Mary.
With totally Instagram-able panoramic ocean views, delicious hula pies, and a mellow vibe inspired by namesake Duke Kahanamoku (the Hawaiian father of international surfing, naturally), you hardly need another reason to head up the PCH to this kitschy surf stalwart. But, just in case: $5 Mai Tais and hula dancers on Fridays.
This beach hideaway may no longer be a secret, but... who cares! It's still one of the only places in LA county to legally drink booze while sticking your feet in the sand, and definitely the only place in LA county you can do that while also eating a gargantuan iced seafood tower.
Perched just above the tumbling waves with your feet up on a day bed, you won’t care who sees you order another strong, manly drink that definitely is NOT a strawberry daiquiri. Spend your Sundays wisely at this Malibu classic, poppin’ bubs, devouring tuna tartare, and enjoying the rotating line-up of DJs throughout the Summer. And the sunsets. Did we mention the sunsets?
Why bother haulin’ up to land-locked wine country when you can sip vino with a view of the beach at this low-key, adult grape juice hideaway? Throw around words like “jam-y” and “tobacco-y” like you know more about wine than what the staff recommends at Trader Joe's, while enjoying quality pours, food truck vittles, and live music.
If you’re not into stuff like watching the sun set on the ocean, bikini-clad volleyball players, and cheap beer, than DON'T GO TO SHELLBACK. And if you are? Totally go to Shellback, bro.
If you’re looking for something more swank than shots-shots-shotsshotsshotsshots near the beach, seek refuge in this class act of a bar, which features Tony Stark-worthy views of the Pacific. Order up farmer-friendly cocktails like the optimistic Sunrise Over Manhattan Beach, or take a pour from their futuristic wine dispensers. Then head to the upstairs bar for more drinks and market-driven upscale eats, courtesy of a cast of well-decorated chefs.
While you're not likely to get too sandy on the outdoor patio of Tony P’s, you will enjoy sweet-ass marina views, a relaxing ocean breeze, and -- if you're smart (you are), a 25oz mug filled with one of their dizzying arrays of draught beers. And yes, that's a collection of 1,400 tap handles.
With 180-degree views of the harbor, roaring fire pits, and an extended happy hour, you’re likely to make the patio at Whiskey Reds your second home this Summer. Wait... can we actually do that for real?
Because you need a classy beachfront bar to impress your parents, and you need alcohol to spend any amount of time with your parents, Coast delivers on both with impressive views and booze. Even if those views sometimes include a flailing rollerblader with a gut, the stiffly poured Life of Ryely and tequila-laden Pepino Sour will help smooth out the unsightly edges.
This sprawling, indoor/outdoor classy surf bungalow nails the rustic charm at every turn, but to catch an ocean breeze, you’ll want to head to the lantern-lit patio. Tough life for you. Order a market-fresh marg at the outdoor bar, then cozy up around a fire pit at night or step up to the ping pong table to show off your skills.
While you may feel as though you’ve been sucked into a tourist vortex, the “macho mega”-sized margaritas and unbeatable ocean views at this end-of-the-pier standby will ease some of your anxieties. And should its extensive and potent cocktail menu leave you feeling “macho mega”-hungry, the tableside-prepared guac and massive nachos will restore peace to your world. Probably.
What Rusty’s lacks in refinement, this pier standby makes up for in unpretentious boozy revelry, fantastic views of the Pacific out back, live bands, karaoke, and heavy-handed bartenders pouring piña coladas into coconuts.
Don your favorite pair of faded madras shorts, and reminisce about your crushing victory at the Figawi regatta at this Nantucket country club-styled beach bar. Oh, that wasn’t you? It’s cool, you’ll still enjoy yourself at this slick hideaway with a Hot Sandy Beach (tequila, basil, jalapeño, lime juice), Pier Pressure (rum, lime juice, grenadine, egg whites) or a classic Dark ‘n Stormy.
Bury your feet in the sand, order up a craft beer, and bid a fond farewell to any commitments you had for the rest of the day at this low-key, right-on-the-damn-beach favorite. Order up the respectable burger or fish & chips... really, it doesn't matter as long as you're holding a beer while doing it.
Situated right on the Venice boardwalk, this beachside retreat offers an impressive rotating selection of mostly local microbrews. Indecisive imbibers fear not, too: the skateboard-flight of beers will help you find the perfect pairing for the tasty and sustainable gastropub bites.
Because you need more grit in your life, this sandy, well-worn Venice institution will satisfy your rough-around-the-edges desires and curiosity for confusing murals. A solid beer selection and $3 Bloody Marys & mimosas on the weekends offer a refreshing respite from an afternoon of broiling on the beach.
Personality goes a long way at this boardwalk dive, especially when that personality is accompanied by stiff drinks. Once you’ve killed it with “Takin’ Care of Business” on the karaoke mic downstairs, head up to the porch to catch an epic sunset view.
Throwing back half-liters of German brews and snacking on oversized Bavarian pretzels would be a respectable way to pass the afternoon in a dimly lit beer hall, but doing so on the sun-soaked strand of Venice is, without doubt, a more respectable way to pass the afternoon. Lederhosen optional. Kinda.
1. Duke's Malibu21150 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu
2. Paradise Cove28128 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu
3. Moonshadows20356 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu
4. Rosenthal Wine Bar & Patio18741 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu
5. Coast Beach Café and Bar1 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica
6. The Bungalow101 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica
7. Mariasol Restaurant401 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica
8. Rusty's Surf Ranch256 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica
9. SHOREbar112 W Channel Rd, Santa Monica
10. Back on the Beach Cafe445 Palisades Beach Rd, Santa Monica
11. Venice Ale House2 Rose Ave, Venice
12. Danny's Venice23 Windward Ave, Venice
13. The Venice Whaler10 Washington Blvd, Venice
14. On the Waterfront Cafe205 Ocean Front Walk, Venice
15. Tony P's Bar & Grill4445 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey
16. Whiskey Red's13813 Fiji Way, Marina del Rey
17. Shellback Tavern116 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach
18. The Strand House117 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach
19. Hennessey’s Tavern8 Pier Avenue, Hermosa Beach
20. the deck1272 The strand, Hermosa Beach
21. Belmont Brewing Company25 39th Pl, Long Beach
22. Yard House401 Shoreline Village Dr, Long Beach
23. The Hangout Restaurant & Beach Bar901 Ocean Avenue, Seal Beach
With Instagram-worthy panoramic ocean views, delicious Hula Pies, and a mellow vibe inspired by namesake Duke Kahanamoku (the Hawaiian Father of international surfing, but you knew that), you hardly need another reason to head up the PCH to this kitschy surf stalwart. But, just in case: $5 Mai Tai’s and hula dancers on Fridays.
This cove of literal paradise is a secret spot off of Malibu, and it's home to a ton of tanning bodies, relaxing hikers and beach extraordinaires, and water too cold to swim in -- but the views are spectacular.
This resto and wine bar also houses the Blue Lounge bar, where you won’t care who sees you order another strong manly drink that definitely is NOT a strawberry daiquiri. Spend your Sundays wisely at this Malibu classic poppin’ bubs, devouring tuna tartare, and enjoying the rotating lineup of DJs throughout the Summer. And the sunsets. Did we mention the sunsets?
Why bother haulin’ up to land-locked wine country when you can sip vino with a view of the beach at this low-key adult grape juice hideaway in Malibu? Throw around words like “jam-y” and “tobacco-y” like you knew more about wine than what the staff recommends at Trader Joe's, while enjoying quality pours, food truck vittles, and live music.
Coast Beach Cafe and Bar does waterfront eating and drinking the way it should be done in Santa Monica: with an emphasis on grilled seafood and breezy cocktails. Blueberry mojitos gesture at the deep blue sea and come with free ocean views on the enclosed outdoor dining patio. The seafood menu is brushed with Latin accents, and jumbo shrimp cocktail best followed by a trio of battered fish tacos or an ahi tuna burger that's tantalizingly pink on the inside.
This sprawling, indoor/outdoor lounge at the Fairmont Santa Monica is rustic, bougie-in-a-good-way, and straight-up charming. The beautifully designed patio is decked out with lanterns and close enough to the beach (aka, right across the street) to catch the ocean breeze. Accouterments like a fire pit and ping pong table make The Bungalow a great place to start the night with a few happy hour drinks.
Mariasol is a Mexican hotspot right on the water in SM, chock full of seriously authentic grub.
This unpretentious joint stands proudly, ready to hook you up with boozy revelry, fantastic views of the Pacific, live bands, karaoke, and heavy-handed bartenders pouring piña coladas into coconuts.
SHOREbar's meant to evoke a Nantucket country club, so expect cushy booths, brass accents, nautically themed art, and vintage coastal maps. Preppy East Coast tipples include the Tower 15 (rum, Shrubb, ginger honey, lime, orange & egg white), and the vodka, St Germain, strawberry & Prosecco JoJo.
Back on the Beach is, well, literally on the beach. A wide stretch of Santa Monica State beach hosts a white wooden building with an interior that looks like your rich relative's beach house, plus a fenced patio out back dotted with tables under orange umbrellas. As is expected of most waterside spots, BOTB has Mediterranean fare and a whole lot of fresh fish, but there really isn't a way to beat the grass fed beef burger (with garlic aioli, roasted tomato, provolone, baby arugula) and a tall, cold beer, the sun on your skin, and sand between your toes.
Venice Ale House is a wood-heavy, organics-driven neighborhood gastropub, decorated w/ arted-up skate decks and bikes, from a duo composed of the restaurateur behind Bar Hayama and a documentary maker/fishmonger -- so either way, he's working on the doc(k)s.
Whether you're looking for a cheap weekend drink ($3 Bloodys and Mimosas) or just a great beer selection to choose from when you come off the beach, Danny's Venice is a great bet.
A Venice landmark, this beachside spot has been serving up market-fresh dishes and high-quality craft cocktails since the '40s. Be sure to try the fish tacos, or split some of their small bites or an artisan pizza with your group -- a group you should also convince to join in the Whaler's Monday night karaoke. While you're there, you'll want to head up to the second-floor patio bar for some gorgeous ocean views, particularly at sunset.
They've got tons of German brews and soft pretzels to munch on too. Plus, this Venice spot has sick views.
This bar's got sweet marina views, a relaxing ocean breeze, and -- if you're smart (you are) a 25oz mug filled with one of their dizzying array of draught beers.
If you're in the mood for the freshest seafood and a relaxing atmosphere, Whiskey Red's is a quality choice, serving a variety of grub from the sea like fresh oysters, Pacific local Rockfish, and battered fried calamari.
If you’re not into stuff like watching the sun set on the ocean, bikini-clad volleyball players, and cheap beer, then DON'T GO TO SHELLBACK.
The Strand House is a Manhattan Beach-based eatery, drawing crowds of LA's affluent with four floors of patio dining, with a menu from the team behind Grace and Gjelina. The food is veggie- and seafood-centric, there are thin-crust pizzas, charcuterie plates, and protein-heavy entrees like spiced New Zealand lamb rack and prime beef filet that are perfectly complemented by fire-roasted baby root vegetables, a glass of Napa Valley Cabernet, and a stunning view of the sprawling beach down below.
Hennessey's is a hotspot for those looking to get rowdy by the water in Hermosa. It's got traditional Irish grub and cheap suds.
The Poop Deck has been reincarnation and now features a noticeable lack of, well, poop. Most of the things you loved about it are still there though, so it's got the same charm as before.
The oldest brewpub the LA area has been serving quality food and drinks for more than 25 years (you better have gotten them something something silver for their anniversary, or did you forget about it?). Menu items include seafood, salads, poultry, and breakfast meals. Stop in for happy hour from 3-6pm Monday-Friday for 40% off appetizers. Plus, it’s hard to beat the oceanfront location.
In Long Beach, Yard House is a sports hot spot with epic meal deals, drink specials, and views of the ocean.