Mar. 9th, 2011

Hollywood Nightlife Heats Up With Three New Bars

Photo Courtesy of Thrillist LA

Awards season is over and it's time for Hollywood to relax. Thank goodness a slew of new watering holes have opened recently where celebrities and nobodies alike can kick back, cocktails in hand, and toast to upcoming projects.

Harvard & Stone
We love the rum drinks at La Descarga, so we were chomping at the bit-or the highball glass, rather-to check out Steve Livigni's new Hollywood hangout, Harvard & Stone. Like La Descarga, the overriding aesthetic here is nostalgic, but whereas La Descarga is all about midcentury Havana, Harvard & Stone conjures up Rosie the Riveter. The 1930's factory setting includes cavernous ceilings, faux-rusty fixtures and exposed pipes and ducts.

The menu focus here is on craft spirits such as vodka, absinthe and even applejack made by artisan distillers used in drinks like a Walnut Manhattan with Woodford Reserve bourbon, Carpano Antica, Nocello liqueur and bitters; and a Push Start with Haute vodka, Luxardo Maraschino cherry liqueur, blackberries, lime juice and agave nectar. Don't worry, there's on-tap beer and wine as well. If you come on the right night, you might catch a surprise show from local musical artists and possibly even some big names on the indie rock scene.

Harvard & Stone
5221 Hollywood Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90027

Lexington Social House
Though aiming more to be "the epitome of intimate, chic dining," with a menu by Chef Mette Williams (Soho House, Cut, Spago), we've started to think of this lavish new 10,000-square-foot lounge/restaurant as more of a nightlife kind of place. The vibe comes courtesy of swanky design by Thomas Schoos with a pressed-tin ceiling, lighting reminiscent of wind chimes, a Carrara marble bar and Queen Anne chairs that hearken to a Hollywood Regency aesthetic.

Sure, you can enjoy a meal of dishes like succulent confit pork belly, but we'd rather save our ducats for drinks. Try the Hitman, made with rosemary and moonshine (we're still not sure what it is) while a DJ spins in the background. Those in the know, however, head straight for the leafy courtyard patio out back where the industry insiders sip specialty cocktails around the second bar, or canoodle by the flickering flames of the cozy firepit.

Lexington Social House
1718 N. Vine St.
Los Angeles, CA 90028

The Spare Room
Who doesn't love a good game of bowling while sipping handmade artisanal cocktails with the who's who of young Hollywood? For those nights when we just need a strike, we've been heading to the newly opened bar at the Hollywood Roosevelt hotel, the Spare Room. It's not just about the two antique-looking bowling lanes along the back wall with windows overlooking Orange Drive, which are reminiscent of that Adirondacks lodge you've always wished you'd inherited. The upper-class rec room aesthetic extends to the bric-a-brac littered around the room, including chessboard tables, books on art, a strange little musical organ and board games like Connect Four.

There's also a hidden photo booth for making your evening memorable since cocktails courtesy of mixologist Aidan Demarest (Seven Grand, The Edison, First & Hope) will likely make your night a little foggy. If you just can't leave without rolling a few rounds, put your name on the list early so you get a spot, and make sure you know your shoe size for the George Esquivel-designed bowling shoes you'll be outfitted with.

The Spare Room
7000 Hollywood Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90028

Lexington Social House

The Spare Room
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Eric Rosen
Eric Rosen lives in Los Angeles and writes about food, wine, travel and adventure... usually in some combination of the four. He regularly contributes to Los Angeles... Luxury NEWS >