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Where to Drink on Thanksgiving Eve in Los Angeles

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2008_10_hasmapsbarsneighborhood.jpgIt's the time of year when friends and family come back home to L.A. for the holidays. And many are keen to arrive well before the turkey starts roasting, which leaves the question: what is there to do? Perhaps grab a drink? There's nothing like that local bar to relax, unwind, and catch up with old friends. Here now, Eater presents a handy guide to drinking on Thanksgiving Eve in L.A.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Cole's

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118 E 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90014
(213) 622-4090
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This downtown drinking den is still a great locals bar while having some of the best cocktails in town. The pretension simply isn't there, just belly up to the bar and order something from the classic recipe-based menu, or whatever you're feeling at the moment. For something more, say agave, there's Las Perlas across the street.

2. The Daily Pint

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2310 Pico Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90405
(310) 450-7631
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This crowded beer and whiskey bar in Santa Monica has resisted any and all attempts of refinement, and that's a good thing for imbibers looking for a good time. The Scotch menu in particular is impressive.

3. Tonga Hut

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12808 Victory Blvd
North Hollywood, CA 91606
(818) 769-0708

A classic Tiki bar that's been around for decades, the drinks are stiff and cheap at Tonga Hut. Though a trek for most people in the main part of L.A., it's an easy hike for those in the lower Valley. For something else tiki in the Valley, try Tiki No in North Hollywood.

4. Neat

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1114 N Pacific Ave
Glendale, CA 91202
(818) 241-4542
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Neat will probably never win any awards for anything cocktail based, despite having a fantastic program that makes solid drinks night in and night out. Plus, the sipping spirits are about as good as you could get for a neighborhood bar. Always a great place to unwind before the holiday weekend. For a bigger space, there's always The Famous on Brand Blvd.

5. 4100 Bar

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1087 Manzanita St
Los Angeles, CA 90029
(323) 666-4460
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As nice of a local dive as you could get, the pretension is nowhere to be found at this bar, where the drinks are strong and relatively inexpensive for the ambiance, which is nice enough to actually have a decent date. But Thanksgiving Eve isn't for dates, it's for revelry, and the place sure fits the bill. For a different scene, there's always Bar Stella at Sunset Junction.

6. Bigfoot Lodge West

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10939 Venice Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90034
(310) 287-2200

The westerly outlet of Bigfoot Lodge is campground and cabin done right, with solid cocktails and a fun atmosphere to boot. And for something festive and seasonal, try the toasted marshmallow, basically a campfire version of the white russian. For some more serious cocktails, walk over to Oldfield's nearby.

7. Club Tee Gee

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3210 Glendale Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90039
(323) 669-9631

A bar that is as unassuming as one could get, the prices aren't as low as most dive bars, but that's probably for the better, to keep the clientele just above the riff raff normally found at places like this. The bartenders are mighty friendly and pour a strong drink. The booths are useful for packing in friends from out of town. For something a little more modern, there's Village Tavern next door.

8. Verdugo Bar

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3408 Verdugo Rd
Los Angeles, CA 90065
(323) 257-3408
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Though the beers tends to get first draw here, there's a full bar for people who aren't necessarily down the carb load of brews. The gin & tonics and other well drinks get a strong hand for not too much dough. Always a good recipe. If the scene's not for you, bounce over to York, where you can try drinks at The York.

9. Chez Jay

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1657 Ocean Ave
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 395-1741
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This legendary seaside dive is still going strong after decades of business. While you're bound to see a celebrity or two, the scene is going to be great no matter what, so bring along a load of friends and party hard.

10. Jones Hollywood

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7205 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90046
(323) 850-1726
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The rock & roll ambiance of Jones is hard to deny when you're looking to have a good time. The food here is pure comfort, from the pizzas and pastas to the legendary apple pie. Drinks are reasonably priced too, which makes Jones a great place to waste away the hours on Thanksgiving Eve. Formosa, right across the street, is also a nice place to wander to afterwards.

11. The HMS Bounty

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3357 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90010
(213) 385-7275
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This old-time Koreatown haunt feels like the kind of place Don Draper would pregame the night (they actually did film Mad Men here). The booths are plush and drinks are strong, making it a fine place to revel with friends and family visiting town. For the next level, try The Prince just a few blocks away.

12. The Wellesbourne

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10929 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90064
(310) 474-0102

The Westside has plenty of quasi-cocktail bars that make decent drinks in a cheerful place, and the Wellesbourne certainly feels that way. There's a large shuffle board, loud music, and plenty of seating in the expansive space. For something different, trek over to Sawtelle and try out some late night karoake.

13. Library Bar

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630 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 488-1931
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This longtime pub in the heart of Downtown's Financial District makes for great place to have some beers or sip on a cocktail, without the bother of a legitimate cocktail bar. The food isn't half bad either, plus there are other bars to wander too if the scene gets old, like The Standard or Perch.

14. Frolic Room

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6245 Hollywood Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90028
(323) 462-5890

Hollywood's essential dive bar only gets better as the place gets more crowded. While the drinks are strong and cheap, the scene is what's the main draw, with everyone from scenesters to old-timers mixing and enjoying the general revelry. Bounce over to nearby Burgundy Room for another classic Hollywood dive experience.

15. Buena Vista Cigar Club

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9715 Santa Monica Blvd
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
(310) 273-8100
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Perhaps the most approachable bar in Beverly Hill's Golden Triangle, this tends to be more of a boys club, though everyone's welcome at this cigar bar, where the scotch selection is primo and the service isn't just friendly, it's really accommodating. There's nothing like scotch and cigars for the holidays.

16. Mandrake Bar

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2692 S La Cienega Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90034
(310) 837-3297
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This is where the South LA and Mid-City hipsters like to congregate, and for good reason. The vibe can range from chill to decently excitable, depending on the night of the week. And Thanksgiving weekend should provide plenty of that. Also nearby, Father's Office, if it's not too late.

1. Cole's

118 E 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90014

This downtown drinking den is still a great locals bar while having some of the best cocktails in town. The pretension simply isn't there, just belly up to the bar and order something from the classic recipe-based menu, or whatever you're feeling at the moment. For something more, say agave, there's Las Perlas across the street.

118 E 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90014

2. The Daily Pint

2310 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405

This crowded beer and whiskey bar in Santa Monica has resisted any and all attempts of refinement, and that's a good thing for imbibers looking for a good time. The Scotch menu in particular is impressive.

2310 Pico Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90405

3. Tonga Hut

12808 Victory Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91606

A classic Tiki bar that's been around for decades, the drinks are stiff and cheap at Tonga Hut. Though a trek for most people in the main part of L.A., it's an easy hike for those in the lower Valley. For something else tiki in the Valley, try Tiki No in North Hollywood.

12808 Victory Blvd
North Hollywood, CA 91606

4. Neat

1114 N Pacific Ave, Glendale, CA 91202

Neat will probably never win any awards for anything cocktail based, despite having a fantastic program that makes solid drinks night in and night out. Plus, the sipping spirits are about as good as you could get for a neighborhood bar. Always a great place to unwind before the holiday weekend. For a bigger space, there's always The Famous on Brand Blvd.

1114 N Pacific Ave
Glendale, CA 91202

5. 4100 Bar

1087 Manzanita St, Los Angeles, CA 90029

As nice of a local dive as you could get, the pretension is nowhere to be found at this bar, where the drinks are strong and relatively inexpensive for the ambiance, which is nice enough to actually have a decent date. But Thanksgiving Eve isn't for dates, it's for revelry, and the place sure fits the bill. For a different scene, there's always Bar Stella at Sunset Junction.

1087 Manzanita St
Los Angeles, CA 90029

6. Bigfoot Lodge West

10939 Venice Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90034

The westerly outlet of Bigfoot Lodge is campground and cabin done right, with solid cocktails and a fun atmosphere to boot. And for something festive and seasonal, try the toasted marshmallow, basically a campfire version of the white russian. For some more serious cocktails, walk over to Oldfield's nearby.

10939 Venice Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90034

7. Club Tee Gee

3210 Glendale Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90039

A bar that is as unassuming as one could get, the prices aren't as low as most dive bars, but that's probably for the better, to keep the clientele just above the riff raff normally found at places like this. The bartenders are mighty friendly and pour a strong drink. The booths are useful for packing in friends from out of town. For something a little more modern, there's Village Tavern next door.

3210 Glendale Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90039

8. Verdugo Bar

3408 Verdugo Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90065

Though the beers tends to get first draw here, there's a full bar for people who aren't necessarily down the carb load of brews. The gin & tonics and other well drinks get a strong hand for not too much dough. Always a good recipe. If the scene's not for you, bounce over to York, where you can try drinks at The York.

3408 Verdugo Rd
Los Angeles, CA 90065

9. Chez Jay

1657 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90401

This legendary seaside dive is still going strong after decades of business. While you're bound to see a celebrity or two, the scene is going to be great no matter what, so bring along a load of friends and party hard.

1657 Ocean Ave
Santa Monica, CA 90401

10. Jones Hollywood

7205 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90046

The rock & roll ambiance of Jones is hard to deny when you're looking to have a good time. The food here is pure comfort, from the pizzas and pastas to the legendary apple pie. Drinks are reasonably priced too, which makes Jones a great place to waste away the hours on Thanksgiving Eve. Formosa, right across the street, is also a nice place to wander to afterwards.

7205 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90046

11. The HMS Bounty

3357 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010

This old-time Koreatown haunt feels like the kind of place Don Draper would pregame the night (they actually did film Mad Men here). The booths are plush and drinks are strong, making it a fine place to revel with friends and family visiting town. For the next level, try The Prince just a few blocks away.

3357 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90010

12. The Wellesbourne

10929 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064

The Westside has plenty of quasi-cocktail bars that make decent drinks in a cheerful place, and the Wellesbourne certainly feels that way. There's a large shuffle board, loud music, and plenty of seating in the expansive space. For something different, trek over to Sawtelle and try out some late night karoake.

10929 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90064

13. Library Bar

630 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90017

This longtime pub in the heart of Downtown's Financial District makes for great place to have some beers or sip on a cocktail, without the bother of a legitimate cocktail bar. The food isn't half bad either, plus there are other bars to wander too if the scene gets old, like The Standard or Perch.

630 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90017

14. Frolic Room

6245 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

Hollywood's essential dive bar only gets better as the place gets more crowded. While the drinks are strong and cheap, the scene is what's the main draw, with everyone from scenesters to old-timers mixing and enjoying the general revelry. Bounce over to nearby Burgundy Room for another classic Hollywood dive experience.

6245 Hollywood Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90028

15. Buena Vista Cigar Club

9715 Santa Monica Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

Perhaps the most approachable bar in Beverly Hill's Golden Triangle, this tends to be more of a boys club, though everyone's welcome at this cigar bar, where the scotch selection is primo and the service isn't just friendly, it's really accommodating. There's nothing like scotch and cigars for the holidays.

9715 Santa Monica Blvd
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

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16. Mandrake Bar

2692 S La Cienega Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90034

This is where the South LA and Mid-City hipsters like to congregate, and for good reason. The vibe can range from chill to decently excitable, depending on the night of the week. And Thanksgiving weekend should provide plenty of that. Also nearby, Father's Office, if it's not too late.

2692 S La Cienega Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90034

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