Food & Drink

The best bar snacking in LA

Published On 10/30/2013 Published On 10/30/2013
freddy smalls LA
Freddy Smalls
Yelp User/Dev C.
Freddy Smalls
Flickr/ TheBusyBrain
Mohawk Bend
Sidebar at Cut
Beer Belly
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1. A-Frame 12565 Washington Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90066

This Hawaiian Culver City eatery from the Roy Choi is an Asian-fusion collaboration in a totally refurbished IHOP, hopped up with a picnic-type patio and light wood-clad walls. Food's meant to be utensil-optional, with inventive dishes like green curry and a poké sampler including choices like tuna with gochujang sauce, sesame leaves & oil, cabbage, seaweed, and nori, as well as tuna with kukui nut chili pesto and Parmesan.

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2. Red Lion Tavern 2366 Glendale Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90039

Open since 1959 in Silver Lake, the Red Lion Tavern has seen the neighborhood transform into the hipster locale it is today. The German-themed bar will make you feel like you're in the middle of Berlin, thanks to a rotating selection of German beer, a schnitzel- and bratwurst-heavy food menu, and the kitschy, flag-laden beer garden. The rooftop is one of the least pretentious ones in Los Angeles, even if it isn't that high off the ground.

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3. Goal 8334 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

From the quality duo of Kitchen 24 and BoHo's designer, and the dude behind Villa, Goal's a wood-toned sports tavern w/ a massive, arrow-shaped bar, vintage game photos on the wall, and 13 viewable-from-anywhere-in-the-room flatscreens, or just enough to make sure your team's on the one that's unlucky.

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4. Freddy Smalls 11520 Pico, Los Angeles, CA 90064

Not just the name of Biggie's brother who owned a panini place, Freddy's also a marble-floored West LA gastropub from the dude behind The Counter, featuring drankin' (nine microbrews, specialty cocktails like the rye/ sarsaparilla/ candied ginger/ lemon garnish "Stumbling Cowboy"), and eatin' courtesy of NY's Charlie Palmer and NorCal's Jeremy Fox. Those guys are cooking up flash-grilled steak tartare, Buffalo deviled eggs w/ crispy chicken skin, and the both dark- and white-meat "New School Chicken Parm", which has no idea what it's going to do with its degree in Social Engineering.

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5. Whitehorse Inn Cocktail Bar 1532 N Western Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027

At the Whitehorse Inn, snacks and hot dogs are complimentary with your drinks, so just keep ordering and the drinks and the snacks will flow. How do ya like that??

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6. Mohawk Bend 2141 W Sunset, Los Angeles, CA 90026

From the guys behind Tony's Darts Away, Mohawk Bend is a "craft everything" brewpub in Echo Park. The space is divided into five areas: a cozy dining cathedral (complete with fireplace), a pub room with a communal concrete table; two separate bars; and a covered patio. Drink options include more than 60 beers and a few wines (all from California) on tap, plus a cocktail program boasting 100 spirits from the Golden State. Menus change seasonally here but the selection of upscale, wood-fired pizzas like the Pig Newton topped with Serrano ham, goat cheese, fig, and rosemary tapenade are always guaranteed to stave off a rumbling stomach.

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7. CUT & CUT Lounge 9500 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90212

Wolfgang Puck's high-end Beverly Hills steakhouse is part of a mini chain that fancy pants around the world (there are locations in Singapore) swear by. The pricey cuts are worth every penny, and the cocktails, appetizers, desserts, and general ambience will have you swooning by the end of the night. Adjacent to the swanky steakhouse, through two oversized steel and glass doors, is the equally as swanky CUT Lounge -- an intimate space for guests to enjoy a snack or craft cocktail before dinner, after dinner, or for an upscale evening on the town.

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8. Beer Belly 532 S Western; Koreatown, Los Angeles, CA 90020

Hidden in the back of a K-Town parking lot is this graffiti-covered beer bar-slash-restaurant. Beer Belly's self-described speciality is craft beer and crafty food, and the menu lives up to its eclectic promise. The excellent selection of local craft beers changes daily, and the food is bar bites-meets-county fair -- think double bacon mac & cheese, pork cheek chili cheese fries, and deep-fried Oreos. The Jidori hot wings are a power-packed delight if you're in the market for some of LA's best chicken wings (who isn't?). As for seating, there are plenty of tables inside but the outdoor beer garden is where it's at.