Photos (clockwise from left): High Rooftop Lounge at Hotel Erwin Bartender's Choice cocktail, Photographed by Hailley Howard; ABH at The Thompson Hotel, Photographed by Hailley Howard; Via Los Angeles Brewing Company
ABH at The Thompson Hotel
While we don't condone it, we say hotel bars are the best place to get mid-day blotto because they're filled with out-of-towners you most likely don't know. The rooftop has panoramic views and cocktail pitchers filled to the brim with flavors like Pineapple Mojito or Watermelon Margarita — they serve six fellow toasters, but the concoctions are so delish, we won't judge if you selfishly sip!
ABH at the Thompson Beverly Hills, 9360 Wilshire Boulevard (at South Crescent Drive); 310-273-1400.
Los Angeles Brewing Company
With 100 beers gracing the menu, the endless taps on the bar's horizon are the first thing your eye moves to upon entrance to this downtown watering hole. And if you're feeling really aggressive, LABC has a beer club, which offers an incentive to try each and every one of its brews. When you reach your 50th, you receive a beer mug with your name engraved on it (which they so kindly store for you), and then upon your 100th, they'll serve you a free brewskie each time you visit. The only catch is that you've got to guzzle up every two weeks to keep the tally afloat. (We hope you'll throw some nighttime hijinks in to meet this mark!)
Los Angeles Brewing Company, 750 South Broadway (near 8th Street); 213-622-0500.
The outdoor patio at this La Cienega staple is always alive and kickin', no matter the hour or day. On the weekends, we love to build our own Bloody Marys with the setup that includes just about every ingredient under the sun (nothing like the hair of the dog, right?).
The Belmont, 747 North La Cienega Boulevard (at Sherwood Drive); 310-659-8871.
This NYC transplant has the prettiest-hued marg in all of Malibu — or even in town for that matter. Order the Prickly Pear, and a magenta cocktail will hit the table that you'll wish they'd make into a lipstick! Oh, and if you stick around long enough on a random Tuesday, at 5 p.m., CH hosts Taco Tuesdays with $3 tacos and Tecate ... paradise.
Café Habana, 3939 Cross Creek Road (at PCH); 310-317-0300.
High Rooftop Lounge at Hotel Erwin
Perched atop the Hotel Erwin in Venice, this is the spot to get a little tipsy on rays and coconut-rum-infused drinks (we recommend the Sangria). The space doesn't open until 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, but definitely get there early for the 1 p.m. cattle call on the weekends — it's consistently packed.
High Rooftop Lounge at Hotel Erwin, 1697 Pacific Avenue (near Brooks Avenue); 310-452-1111.
The Roof On Wilshire at The Hotel Wilshire
This mid-city rooftop haven is ideal before or after a LACMA mission, and our current poison of choice is the Mulberry with fresh strawberries, raspberry vodka, and champers. Add some sunshine and a breeze, and you've got pure bliss on (and in) your hands!
The Roof on Wilshire at The Hotel Wilshire, 6317 Wilshire Boulevard (near South Crescent Heights Boulevard); 323-852-6002.
The Village Idiot
With a pub-like feel in back and large windows in front, you can either go incognito or see-and-be-seen at this Melrose joint (we can all agree that these sidewalks were cemented for people-watching!). The wine list is phenomenal, and we dig the selection of beer cocktails like the "Shandy," which blends lager and lemon-lime soda into one luscious libation.
The Village Idiot, 7383 Melrose Avenue (near North Martel Avenue); 323-655-3331.
A Venice locals' beloved bar, Oscars has unparalleled cool factor. On top of umpteen must-try wines, the empanadas are simply divine.
Oscar’s Cerveteca, 523 Rose Avenue (near 6th Street); 310-310-8937.
Thomas Keller's courtyard-casual alternative to the upstairs Bistro is the next best thing to, well, his indulgent upstairs Bistro! Come here for a swanky lunch (the Grilled Cheese will have your taste buds in a tizzy, and the vinos from around the world will impress any palate). But don't plan on this being your spot to cause a ruckus — put on your finest and be low-key amongst the jet set and Hollywood heavy-hitters.
On this eatery's Triple Threat Thursdays, you can score a burger (cooked with all local, fresh ingredients), a beer, and a shot for a mere 15 bucks. And if you didn't think that was beatable, the Hangover's Revenge weekend brunch boasts four dollar Bloody Marys and Mimosas. And free parking makes all of those deals even sweeter (although, we obviously hope you're cabbing it if you're setting out to get housed)!
The Escondite, 410 Boyd Street (near South San Pedro Street); 213-626-1800.
Venice Whaler Bar and Grill, 10 Washington Boulevard (at Washington Boulevard); 310-821-8737.
The Cabana Café at The Beverly Hills Hotel
Quite possibly the most exclusive place to spend a radiant day is poolside at the BHH. They'll treat you like a queen, you'll spy the hottest tourists in town (in their skivvies, no less!), and you'll not only soak up some solar time, but with historical flare! Tip: Reserve a cabana for the ultimate glam experience.
The Cabana Café, 9641 Sunset Boulevard (at North Beverly Drive); 310-276-2251.
This Pacific perch is the coziest view of the coast you'll find. The seafood is obviously as fresh as it gets, and you won't want to leave until the sun sets (in fact, please don't)!
Moonshadows, 20356 Pacific Coast Highway (near Big Rock Drive); 310-456-3010.
Located right on the Boardwalk in Venice, and named for iconic CA minimalist artist Larry Bell, this is the beach at its buzziest. Order a Wild Mushroom Pizza (wild shrooms, wild arugula, topped with burrata) from the original Palihouse chef Brendan Collins, and swig it down with the restaurant's famous Sangria. If you sit for too long, though, you might start wondering if you're hallucinating with all the wild walks of life strolling the sidewalk ahead!
Larry's, 24 Windward Avenue (at Speedway); 310-399-2700.
Big Bar At Alcove
Hang indoors, outdoors, or inside Big Bar's private event cottage with a chalice of wine or beer at this Los Feliz residents' fave. The most appropriate concoction of the moment? Order the Harvest Moon, packed with Laird's Applejack, Amaro Nonino, Lillet, and house-pressed apple juice.
Big Bar At Alcove, 1929 Hillhurst Avenue (between Clarissa and Franklin avenues); 323-644-0100.
Blue Plate Oysterette
Smack dab on Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica is a little taste of East Coast comfy style (it was modeled after a glam clam shack), and a smorgasbord of seafood that puts that seaboard to shame! Since her other resto, Blue Plate on Montana, doesn't serve booze, we were really thankful that owner Jenny Morton kept the casual vibe and upped the alchie ante.
Blue Plate Oysterette, 1355 Ocean Avenue (at Santa Monica Boulevard); 310-576-3474.
The Penthouse at The Huntley Hotel
With a sky-scraping view of the ocean and quirky-cool decor, this is our first lunch suggestion when someone special comes to town. It's so spectacularly bright, you'll want to keep your sunglasses on as you sip liquor like the Mello Mojito, made with watermelon, mint, and rum.
The Penthouse at the Huntley Hotel, 1111 2nd Street (near Wilshire Boulevard); 310-394-5454.
The Rooftop at The Standard Hotel Downtown & The Standard Biergarten
By now, you've most likely imbibed at this Eastside rooftop (and maybe don't even remember it!), but it's still worth a sip and a dip in the pool! And have you hit the Biergarten yet? They stock German goodies like currywurst and pretzels — and a bevy of brewskies (natch). And hey, why not hit both? You can kill two boozy birds with one hotel stone!
It's to your advantage to try one of this Westside wine bar's flights — they're only ten to twelve fun tickets to taste, and you'll sip wine from locals and globals you've most likely never even seen before.
Elvino, 1142 Abbot Kinney Boulevard (near San Juan Avenue); 310-396-9705.
Oh Marix! WeHo's ultimate Mexican restaurant never disappoints with its ginormous margs and gorgeous men lounging about. The enchiladas will have you waving your rainbow flag so high, you may just meet a new bestie!
Marix Tex Mex Café, 1108 North Flores Street (near Santa Monica Boulevard); 323-656-8800.
You may not be able to head to the toast of downtown's rooftops until four on weekdays, but not to worry, because these days you still need to pack your SPF until at least seven. Reap the benefits of the killer view, and don't forget to go for the Royal during happy hour: The 'tenders will top your champs with a shot for only six bills.
Perch, 448 South Hill Street (near West 5th Street); 213-802-1770.
Saint Felix, 8945 Santa Monica Boulevard (near North Robertson Boulevard); 310-275-4428.