Bars and clubs may come and go, but no matter the season, Los Angeles has an eclectic nightlife scene with plenty of places to imbibe. Whether you're looking for a tried-and-true watering hole or a trendy new hot spot, L.A.'s selection of bars, lounges, and nightclubs offers boozy brunches and weekday happy hours, specialties like avocado beer, the newest in natural wine, and the coolest of CBD-infused craft cocktails. Here are 10 of the hottest bars and nightclubs in Los Angeles.
Vinyl in a whiskey and mezcal mecca
DJs and bartenders set the vibe at this vinyl bar in the Stones Throw Records building. Every song is carefully selected from Stones Throw artist and owner Peanut Butter Wolf's collection of 8,000 records shelved on the wood walls above the bar. Here you’ll find a lengthy list of natural wine and craft cocktails (check the extensive whiskey list), with a dim-lit lounge featuring promo shots of artists like Siouxsie (from Siouxsie and the Banshees) and Queen Latifah. The Gold Linę is perfect for a pregame hang or a fun first date.
Downtown Los Angeles
DTLA Mexican dance hall and patio
This historic Bunker Hill Mexican bar and dancehall has a different flavor every night of the week. Inside, live bands accompany dancers of all ages in a variety of styles, from cumbia to reggaetón, on the red lights of the dancefloor. Outside, a younger generation sits on El Patio, watching fútbol or building their own Bloody Marys on Sunday Bloody Sunday. An intergenerational and multinational gem right next to Grand Central Market, La Cita is welcoming to all.
Boba goes boozy
Sip's specialty is alcoholic boba drinks, which puts them at the cutting edge of the West Coast boba craze. This hip hang offers a half-off deal for fruit- and milk-based options during happy hours, plus interesting snacks like gyoza and katsu sandwiches. It’s chill before 10 p.m., but DJs get the dance floor filled soon after. Take a breather with a boozy boba with a divine view of downtown from the patio.
Upgraded West Side staple
Abbot Kinney's Roosterfish was a beloved gay dive bar for several years, so when it went through a recent renovation, frequenters were worried it would lose its charm. Luckily, the updated space retained its welcoming spirit (check out the infamous bathroom wallpaper) and added specialty cocktails using juices, infusions, and shrubs all made in-house. There's a pool table and plenty of seating inside or on the patio, ensuring Roosterfish will stay a Venice neighborhood favorite.
Star-studded celebrity piano bar
Actor-singer-dancer Darren Criss and wife Mia Von Criss brought New York City's piano bar to L.A. with Tramp Stamp Granny's. Promising "drinks, dancing, and upscale debauchery," this glammy art deco spot offers singalongs to jazz standards, Broadway soundtracks, and pop covers, as well as burlesque shows and theme nights (think Rocky Horror Picture Show and Steven Sondheim). In the heart of Hollywood, TSG's never fails to provide a good show, with pop-up performances from Criss himself as well as his former Glee co-stars and famous friends.
1970s disco and gin cocktails
Connected to the Italian square-style pizza spot De La Nonna, Let's Go Disco and Cocktail Club is perfect for a fun drink before dinner or a post-meal aperitif. Kitsch is chic at this spot with circular booths, pink neon lighting, and spinning disco balls. The ambience is 1970s Italian inspired, as are the gin-centric cocktails and the music. Try the Negroni Garbaggio or the Donna Summer Dress… and prepare to dance.
Rooftop views and vibes
Widely recognized as West Hollywood's best rooftop restaurant and bar, E.P. & L.P. is an ideal spot to watch the sun set over the hills above the Sunset Strip. The frozen Rosé and weekly rotating slushies are clutch on hot summer days while enjoying the view. Home to Melrose Rooftop Theatre, the patio shifts into beanbag seating for parties of two to four for cult classics and new releases on a screen overlooking the city.
L.A.'s best live jazz
Namedropped in La La Land, Los Angeles's longest-running jazz club is recognized as an institution worldwide. Old-school stars and new acts alike play nightly at the Baked Potato, where the stage is as hot as the 20-plus loaded potato offerings on the menu. And just like the various options for toppings, there are no bad seats inside this intimate Studio City venue just down the street from Universal Studios Hollywood.
Wellness goes out to drink
If you prefer a mixologist to a bartender, you'll love perusing the "prescription list" of botanical-themed infused cocktails at Apothéke. Need some stress relief? There's a drink for that—with flaming absinthe, eucalyptus-infused tequila, gin, and vodka. Inside, the lounge is romantic with speakeasy sensuality while outside, a patio splayed with Turkish rugs and snug couches overlook the L.A. River and Metro train tracks. Special events and live music are regular part of the mix Thursday through Sunday.
Legendary Central L.A. night club
Once known as the West Coast's answer to Studio 54, Catch One is a historic nightclub with two floors and several rooms for drinking and dancing. DJs from all over the world come to L.A. for gigs at the Catch, where the dancefloors have hosted the likes of Whitney Houston, Luther Vandross, Janet Jackson, Donna Summer, Whoopi Goldberg, Rick James, and Madonna. Whether you like house music or techno cumbia, moving is on the menu.