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Hidden Koreatown Bar The Venue Adds Culinary Firepower From Nick Erven

The underground lounge-cum-karaoke spot gets a menu revamp

Food from The Venue, Koreatown
Wonho Frank Lee
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

Nick Erven (Saint Martha, Erven) dips his toes back into the Koreatown waters, helping out with a full menu relaunch at hip hidden party den The Venue. That means izakaya style with LA flavors, and a whole lot of drinks.

Erven has some loose ties to Koreatown already, having first made a name for himself with Saint Martha, a different kind of hidden strip mall restaurant destination. Unfortunately that venture proved unworkable, and the space itself off Western Avenue has since cascaded into a few different concepts — including a current Indian fusion phase.

Now the non-vegan chef with the formerly meatless Santa Monica restaurant returns to Koreatown, setting up a menu of super snackable stuff served with cocktails and singing in private karaoke lounges. He’s preparing fried tofu nuggets, soft-boiled ramen eggs, and ribeye steaks, while drinks from Devon Espinosa, who set up the original menu. There’s a new happy hour too, running Monday through Thursday from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and featuring $5 beers or $5 off select cocktails. The full happy hour and dinner menus for The Venue are below.

The Venue

, , CA 90010 (213) 221-1251 Visit Website