Bartenders, mixologists, beverage directors, bar consultants — whatever title they go by, these ladies and gentlemen of drink are shaping LA's nightlife scene for the better. They are putting out seasonal menus, new takes on classic drinks and even aged cocktails on tap. Every day they come up with a new take on booze. But where do they go when they get a (rare) night off? Below, find out where two dozen of LA's top bartenders like to go to get a drink.
Rob Floyd - The Bazaar: Occasionally I like to head downtown to Seven Grand whiskey bar ... snag one of the pool tables and try one of the rare bourbons that only they carry. Believe it or not, there are usually lots of females there, not what you'd normally expect from a manly whiskey bar. They're also known for the "Los Angeles Cocktail," a whiskey sour meets a Manhattan, topped with nutmeg, one of my favorites.
Beau du Bois - The Corner Door: I'm a big fan of a karaoke bar in Burbank called Sardos. Cheap drinks and a very lively crowd combined with karaoke seven nights a week. I also frequent a country bar in Burbank called Joe's. Huge draft beers and line dancing for me to watch on some nights. And I love the Frolic room in Hollywood."
Aiden Demarest - Neat: "I rotate around a lot. Eveleigh, Seven Grand, Providence. Depends."
Gabby Mlynarczyk - ink.: "I like to drink at The Tasting Kitchen, The Varnish, Eveleigh. My preference is for a good amaro like Cynar or R. Jelinek fernet, classic negroni, boulevardier (rye w/ Cynar and sweet vermouth) Americano highball, or Mezcal margarita from restaurant Casablanca in Venice, they have a booze cart that comes to your table and mix the drink in front of you."
Gregory Westcott - M.B. Post: "Oldfields for... a Cactus Derby or 7 Grand for an Old Fashioned."
Pablo Moix - Pour Vous, La Descarga, Harvard & Stone: "So many bars have a large disconnect between what they're serving, who their serving it to, and the idea of hospitality. I want to go to a place for the experience, for the bartender's focus, technique, and for something simple and delicious. I like Three of Clubs in Hollywood, and I'll usually get a beer and a glass of whisky. I also like stopping by to see Joe Brooke at Mixology 101 from time to time."
Chris Ojeda - Soho House: "The Varnish. I'll get an Old Fashioned."
Giovanni Martinez - Sadie: "Villain's Tavern - a shot and a beer, bartender's choice. Harvard & Stone, shot of Angostura and then a bartender's choice cocktail from the R&D bar. Cole's - Red Car, start with an Old Fashioned and then a Craftsman beer."
Jason Bran - Towne Food & Drink, Roger Room: "Eveleigh - Mexican iced coffee; Varnish - Ramazzotti Buck; Spare Room - Amoxycillin; El Carmen - Del Maguey Chichicapa; Stout - Brother Thelonious and Bread Pudding; Dresden Room - Rob Roy; Barcade - Miller High Life; Joymart - Kikusui Junmai Ginjo and Asahi Super Dry."
Julian Cox - Picca, Sotto, The Test Kitchen, Rivera, Playa, Short Order: "The Parish -- a beer and a shot."
Josh Goldman - Picca, Sotto, The Test Kitchen, Rivera, Playa, Short Order: "Eveleigh is around the corner from my house so I usually go over there and let them do their thing. I love going over to ink. and checking out what they're doing behind the bar."
Paul Sanguinetti - Ray's & Stark Bar: "The Varnish, because I usually have Mondays off and it's a great night there... most of the time I'll do bartender's choice, but their julep right now is the best I've had in awhile, as is their negroni-ish variation Barolo Chinato."
Lindsay Nader - The Brig, Pour Vous: "On my nights off I love to swing by Son Of A Gun for a fried chicken sandwich and one of Daniel Warrilow's adult snow cones! They are boozy, icy treats that satisfy both my inner child and my 'adult' thirst."
Devon Espinosa - Pour Vous: I love to go to Harvard and Stone and throw back a shot of fernet with a can of beer, especially when I am in decompress mode from a long week of work. But when in doubt you can never go wrong with the "Baby's 1st Bourbon" or a "Trinidad Sour."
Jonny Ericsen - AMMO: "Good Luck Bar - bartender's choice."
Brady Weise - 1886 Bar at The Raymond: "Big Bar – Bartender's Choice "Seasonal Program" Cocktail ; Tiki Ti - Ugga Booga (Its a mind bender); Blue Plams Brewhouse – This is one of my favorites because their list is constantly changing. The beer list is broadcasted on a TV above the bar, and you can sit there for two hours and watch great beers pop up on the screen that weren't there when you walked in. Plus they have a great spirit selection, so you really can't go wrong."
Max Seaman - The Varnish: "On a night off you can find me drinking a Sapporo or Yamazaki 12yr at Cosmos Bar on E 1st st in Little Tokyo while waiting for a table at Daikokuya next door."
Andrew Abrahamson - Seven Grand: "On my day off I like to Dan Sung Sa in Koreatown. Get the Spicy Fried Chicken Wings and a bottle of Chamiseul Original."
Pedro Shanahan - Seven Grand: "Canter's Kibitz Room is my local dive bar. A shot of Old Grand Dad 101 and a Miller High Life is how I keep it real on my days off."
Kristina Howald - Providence: "Rivera Downtown. Their Blood Sugar Sex Magic is one of my favorites."
Eric Alperin - The Varnish: "Three of Clubs on Santa Monica & Vine. Jameson on the rocks."
Daniel Warrilow - Son of a Gun: "I'm a big fan of Eveleigh, I think they have some stellar bartenders as well as a great guest bartending program. I think it's important to support local talent as well as bring in people from all over the country to share their knowledge with us. It doesn't hurt that Jordan Toft is a great chef."
Raul Yrastorza - Las Perlas: "Kings Head Santa Monica. A proper Pint of Guinness or Bushmills 16year Neat (with an order of the best damn Fish and Chips in the nation with a side of English curry to dip the fries in, sit outside at sunset?perfect)."
Jaymee Mandeville - Drago Centro: "Las Perlas, Del Maguey Chichicapa.... Neat."
Justin Pike - The Tasting Kitchen: "For casual, I love The Daily Pint, great beers, cask beer is always fun,and they have such a wide selection of scotch without being fancy. For somewhere nicer, I love going to Bar Kitchen, it's near the Staples Center and not usually too crowded on a Monday night. I always ask for something stirred or a tiki-style drink."
Matthew Biancaniello: "At home. Coffee infused Cynar on the rocks."
·All Cocktail Week 2012 Coverage [~ELA~]