In the past decade, Downtown Los Angeles has transformed into a hotbed of eating and drinking establishments catering to the area’s prolific workforce and visitors popping in on the Metro - many looking for those elusive time-sensitive deals. Read on for 20 Downtown L.A. hotspots, new and old, that promise great food and drink experiences that won't break the bank.
When the original Don's Beachcomber opened in 1933, Hollywood became the official birthplace of the Polynesian themed Tiki culture reflected in architecture, fashion and movies. Decorated with items that Donn Beach (aka Ernest Raymond Beaumont Gantt) scavenged from the ocean shores, the bar later known as Don the Beachcomber served “exotic” rum drinks with flair. The island escapism offered by his imaginative Tiki concept and its many imitators flourished for decades before nearly being killed off in the disco era.
Tiki's current resurgence owes a lot to the craft cocktail movement, which recognized the potential in the elaborate tropical concoctions made with house syrups and fresh juices. With a new generation of bartenders leading the way, the L.A. tiki scene is once again thriving, and nothing says summer more than a fancy fruit garnish and a little paper umbrella.
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The popularity of Emmy-winning Rupaul’s Drag Race has brought the art of drag to the masses. Lucky for us, Los Angeles boasts some of the most sensational, celebrated performers in the business, including Mama Ru herself. You can find weekly showcases with immaculate lip-syncing and dead-on celebrity impersonations, punk rock dance parties - even bingo, books and brunch, drag in L.A. does it all.
Highland Park is the Los Angeles neighborhood of the moment thanks to a recent renaissance that has bolstered its community of small, local businesses. Long standing, family-run shops have been joined by new-to-the-neighborhood restaurants, bars and retailers. Enjoying superb accessibility from other parts of L.A. thanks to the Metro Gold Line, Highland Park has become a dining and libational destination with a diverse set of choices thanks to longtime resident families, as well as artists, musicians and designers.
With so many choices, it might be hard know which food and drink stops are the highlights. Read on for a cross-section of Highland Park restaurants and bars that reflects the richness of the area’s diversity.
There are many tales about the origin of the Margarita, but what is known are the basic ingredients: tequila, triple sec, lime juice, and salt on the glass rim. These days, the Margarita can be found in many creative variations using tequila, mezcal, and other agave spirits, along with fresh fruit, herbs, and spices—shaken, stirred, or blended and served in a variety of glassware.
No matter what ingredients are used and how it’s prepared, what can be agreed upon is that the Margarita is a most celebratory drink—in a "party" kind of way. So, cheers to good times and to the best places to find Margaritas in Los Angeles.
Los Angeles is a place filled with opportunity. No matter what you may want to eat or want to have done, there’s always somewhere in this city that you can get it. The melding of different cultures represented by all the various neighborhoods means that every community is bringing something to the table, making the city more than the sum of its parts.
In the wee hours of the night, however, our choices become quite a bit more scarce outside of normal business hours. So it proves helpful to know just which businesses are open 24 hours during one of your odd hour cravings. Whether you’re in the mood for Korean food, donuts, the spa, a chili burger, or even bowling, we’ve got a list of places where you can get just that no matter what time of day it is.
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A Mexican dive bar by day, La Cita transforms into a live music and DJ venue at night. Located on Hill Street just steps from Grand Central Market, La Cita hosts weekday Happy Hours out on the expansive patio from 4-9 p.m., featuring $3 Tecates and domestics, $4 imports and wells. Friday's "Angry Hour" adds punk rock and free pizza to the festivities. "Sunday Bloody Sunday" (2-9 p.m.) features a Build Your Own Bloody Mary Bar. Sports are a big part of La Cita - two flat screen TVs indoors, two flat screens outdoors, and a large projector screen show international soccer and domestic pro sports, along with major NCAA games. Music at La Cita ranges from old school hip-hop on Monday night to rockabilly (Thursdays 4-9 p.m.), cumbia (Thursdays, $7 cover after 10 p.m.), "Punky Reggae" every Friday night and Yacht Rock on Saturday afternoon.
M-F 11 a.m. - 2 a.m., Sat-Sun 10 a.m. - 2 a.m.
336 S Hill St, Downtown Los Angeles