For cocktail enthusiasts around the country, December 5 is nearly as important a date on the calendar as Dec. 25 or Dec. 31. Created by Portland bartender Jeffrey Morgenthaler, Repeal Day is celebrated every Dec. 5 to honor the repeal of the 18th Amendment in 1933, which ended 13 years of Prohibition.
The national celebration has grown in popularity every year, and bars across Los Angeles are featuring drink specials and events to commemorate the 84th anniversary of Repeal. As President Franklin D. Roosevelt said at the end of Prohibition: “What America needs now is a drink.”
NOTE: all Repeal Day events listed take place on Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017 unless otherwise noted.
Named after the year that Prohibition was repealed, 1933 Group is celebrating the end of the 18th Amendment by featuring a special Repeal Day cocktail for just $1 at all nine of their bars: $1 Old Fashioneds at Bigfoot Lodge, Bigfoot West, Harlowe, Highland Park Bowl, Oldfield’s Liquor Room, Sassafras Saloon and Thirsty Crow; $1 Moscow Mules at Idle Hour in North Hollywood; and $1 Sino Reposado Tequila cocktails at La Cuevita in Highland Park. The Repeal Day cocktail specials are available from 5-8 p.m.
Based in Downtown L.A., 213 Hospitality owns and operates bars in L.A., San Diego and Austin. From 7-10pm on Repeal Day, Seven Grand is teaming up with Evan Williams Bourbon to offer $7 Old Fashioneds, Whiskey Sours, Mint Juleps and Manhattans. Celebrate the end of Prohibition with classic bourbon cocktails and music by The Makers. Seven Grand is open at 3pm daily.
The historic Red Car Bar at Cole's French Dip features an all-day Happy Hour every Tuesday, and on Repeal Day guests can enjoy Old Fashioneds, Manhattans, Martinis and beers for $6 from noon until close. Cole's French Dips will be offered at Happy Hour pricing all day as well. Caña Rum Bar will be extending Happy Hour all night - that means $5 Mojitos, Daiquiris and Cuba Libres from 5pm-2am. Live music by Sitara Son starts at 10pm.
Dubbed the "first gay craft cocktail bar in Downtown L.A." when it opened in October 2015, Bar Mattachine has built a devoted following thanks to Bar Manager Garrett McKechnie's cocktail program and lively nights that range from drag queen trivia to DJs and open mic live music. For Repeal Day, McKechnie is offering $5 "Moscow Muellers" all night long. Mattachine's regular Happy Hour features special prices on select cocktails, beer and wine from 5-8pm. It would be treasonous to miss these specials!
A popular spot for Los Feliz locals and cocktail aficionados, Big Bar is featuring the Scofflaw, a classic cocktail made with Redemption Rye, dry vermouth, lemon, grenadine and orange bitters. Named after the Prohibition term for "lawless drinkers" of illegal hooch, the Scofflaw debuted at Harry's Bar in Paris in 1924 while American imbibers were enduring Prohibition stateside. The Scofflaw will be featured as an $8 all-day Happy Hour special starting at 10:30 a.m. Pro tip: you can also get an Old Fashioned for the special price of $8.
Hidden inside The Raymond in South Pasadena, Bar 1886 is tucked in the back of the charming Craftsman house that houses the restaurant. For Repeal Day, lead bartender Peter Lloyd Jones is featuring the New York Sazerac ($12) made with 1:1 cognac and rye whiskey as the base, absinthe, Peychaud's Bitters, sugar, and lemon oil - stirred and served in a footed sour glass.
Located on bustling 7th Street in Downtown L.A., Brack Shop Tavern has something for everyone - classic cocktails, craft beers and an upstairs game room. For Repeal Day, Brack Shop Tavern is featuring burlesque dancers, jazz music and $5 Old Fashioned deals from 6pm to midnight. Food specials include $6 deviled eggs, $10 shrimp cocktails and $8 stuffed mushrooms.
Helmed by "the Godfather" of the L.A. cocktail scene, Vincenzo Marianella, Copa d'Oro was in the vanguard of L.A. craft cocktail bars when it opened in January 2009 and continues to showcase fresh ingredients sourced from the Santa Monica Farmers Market. For Repeal Day, Marianella is making you an offer you can't refuse: Happy Hour all night! Select from classics like the Ward 8, Jack Rose, Tommy's Margarita and Moscow Mule, or go all in with "Just Because" cocktails like the 5th Avenue Manhattan: Pappy Van Winkle 23-Year Family Reserve, Martini & Rossi Gran Lusso, and Angostura Bitters.
El Dorado is a 6,100 square-foot subterranean lounge located beneath the El Dorado lofts. Follow the bright "El Dorado Bar" sign down the staircase and you'll enter the Art Deco style bar with dark wood, leather booths and a stamped tin ceiling. Starting at 9pm, the Stowaway Bar at El Dorado is featuring $5 Repeal Punch with The Real McCoy Rum on tap, with music by DJ Victoria Rawlins.
Since its opening in April 2014, Faith & Flower has become one of Downtown L.A.’s top dining destinations. Located just a few blocks from STAPLES Center, the expansive restaurant features an ornate design inspired by L.A. history - the nearby Broadway theatre district, Grand Avenue mansions and more. On his penultimate night at Faith & Flower, Bar Manager Adam Fournier is offering $5 Decanter Old Fashioneds, Champagne Cocktails and Bees Knees, plus discounts on the house Single Barrel Old Fashioned menu. The Repeal Day specials will be available from 5pm to close.
At Good Housekeeping in Highland Park, Bar Director Alex Barbatsis and Head Bartender Lauren Pool will be celebrating the repeal of Prohibition with $9 High West Whiskey cocktails all night. The Scofflaw features High West Double Rye with grenadine, lemon, and dry vermouth. The Kentucky Colonel is made with High West American Prairie Bourbon, Angostura Bitters and Benedictine. Both classic cocktails will be available from 7pm to midnight. Dapper attire encouraged!
The warm and distinctive interior of Melrose Umbrella Co. features 13 umbrellas hanging on a wall, representing the dry years of Prohibition and the many “wet” days that followed the ratification of the 21st Amendment. The fourth annual Repeal Day Under the Umbrella is taking place all day on Dec. 5. Your first Wild Turkey Old Fashioned is only $1! Other specials include $8 Wild Turkey & Mixwell Ginger Highballs and $8 drams of Russell's Reserve. Enjoy fresh Debonair Barber cuts & shaves from noon to 5pm. At 6pm, toast to the "many wet days to come" with Wild Turkey Brand Ambassador Bruce Russell, followed by the swinging, jazzy grooves of the Willie McNeil Band from 7-10pm.
Located on Windward Avenue just steps from Venice Beach, the historic Townhouse and The Del Monte opened as Menotti’s in 1915. The bar became a “grocery store” during the Prohibition era, while downstairs The Del Monte became a hub for rum runners. After the repeal of Prohibition, the above-ground bar re-opened and boasted regular patrons like Charlie Chaplin and Venice resident Jim Morrison of The Doors. Today, both floors serve craft cocktails and The Del Monte features a variety of live performances, from bands and DJs to comedy and burlesque.
The Townhouse 102-Year Anniversary + Repeal Day Celebration kicks off at 6 p.m. with a free pig roast. Venice Underground Spirit Society will present a complimentary whiskey tasting from 6-7 p.m. in The Del Monte. Music performances are taking place in The Del Monte from 7 p.m. to close, featuring Mudbug Brass Band, Brad Kay's Regressive Jazz Band, plus DJs Mark Maxwell and Danny Holloway. There's also Prohibition stories and Venice history with bar historian George Czarnecki at 8:30 p.m. Listen for the bell to ring at the bar and enjoy 1933 pricing on all cocktails. The Repeal Day Celebration is taking place from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. No cover.
Located in the heart of Downtown Culver City, The Wallace is a seasonal restaurant focusing on local and sustainable ingredients. Beverage Director Greg Bryson is offering Repeal Day specials featuring Wild Turkey classic cocktails at "Prohibition prices" paired with bar bites by Executive Chef Joel Miller.