The presents are opened, the pies are finished, and Uncle Joe’s political rants are on your last nerve. It’s time to make a polite exit and hit the bar! But where does the dysfunctional family escapee or the Christmas orphan go for a little holiday cheer? We are way ahead of you! Join us at the bar…
If you are the kind of boy who likes other boys, come enjoy craft cocktails at Bar Mattachine’s two story lounge. Everyone is welcome to join the festivities, “whether you are or not.” There will be dancing to a live DJ under a shimmering disco ball, so it’s kind of like Studio 54 without Liza Minelli and cocaine. Partner Garrett McKechnie is shaking it up with the El’s Nog — a New England signature recipe of creamy eggnog, crafted by McKechnie’s friend and colleague, Eloise Humphrey. The nog is mixed up with Cognac, Jamaican rum and rye. There is also a summery daquiri with Reyka vodka, honey syrup, mint, fresh lime juice and Angostura bitters, the daquiri is dubbed “The Bitter Queen.” No comment. Open 5pm to 2am
Marina Del Rey’s Beachside Restaurant & Bar offers beautiful views of the beach and marina, from both inside and outside on the patio. To keep you warm, the patio is outfitted with cozy fire pits. Enjoy a true SoCal Christmas overlooking the water with a “Caribbean Cooler” featuring Blackmask Coconut Rum, Midori, and Pineapple Juice. The restaurant and bar is open for Brunch, their famous Happy Hour, and Dinner on Christmas Day. They will be serving the full regular menu, as well as several seasonal favorites. If you want to start your drinking early, the bar opens at 6:30am. The bar stays open until 10pm, but the kitchen closes between 2:30pm and 4pm. Enter through the Jamaica Bay Inn.
Located in the heart of hipster central in Atwater Village, the Bigfoot Lodge is still too cool to just be a fad. Go to town with The Golden Shower, the Gateway Drug or the Donkey Punch. Because you are classy like that. I recommend “One Good Buck” with Old Forrester Bourbon, strawberries and soda.
The Westside’s neighborhood watering hole for young chefs and old punks celebrates Christmas from 8pm to 2am with DJ Charlie X spinning the best in 80’s and X-mas tunes. Drink specials include a $4 Low Life (PBR with shot), $8 Home made Egg Nog, Candy Cane Martinis, and more!
A little bit of The French Quarter right in Downtown LA. Set in the Alexandria Hotel, The Little Easy will keep the party going from 12 noon until 12 midnight. Get cheery with their version of Milk Punch made with dark rum, honey, egg whites, and cream. Or dream of the Big Easy with a Pimm’s Cup, Sazerac or Hurricane. They even have Abita Amber. Order the fries with debris, you won’t be sorry. There are also the usual po’ boys and gumbo. Sleep it off on their porch swing, but don’t linger too long. I think it’s haunted.
If you are looking for something really elegant, check out Wolfgang Puck’s Nest on top of the DTLA Ritz Carlton. On December 25, guests can enjoy specialty cocktails, such as the “Tokyo Time Traveler” (plymouth gin, poochi sake, shisho leaves, lemon) and the “Dragon’s Fire” (tequila, grapefruit, jalapeño). The bar also has an extensive wine and beer list. It is common for some cultures to eat Chinese food on Christmas day, so you can continue that tradition with Prime Beef Chow Fun Noodles and Steamed Assorted Dim Sum. The kitchen also serves sushi and appetizers, such as Spicy & Crispy Chicken Wings or Korean Marinated Beef Short Ribs.
This English Pub in Hollywood will host their annual holiday Christmas celebration in the pub’s 81-year-old warm and cozy room amongst stockings and homey holiday decor. If you want to celebrate with your best friend, there is also a dog-friendly patio. Enjoy their signature Christmas Cheer Cocktails, like “George’s Marvelous Medicine” with Old Forester Bourbon Infused with Persimmon, Cane Syrup, and The Pikey’s Pecan Tincture, or the “Skinny Tie,” made with Herradura Reposado Tequila, Laird’s Apple Jack, Apple and Blackberry Shrub, Fresh Lemon Juice, and Soda. If you get hungry, Chef Ralph Johnson will be serving their usual Gastropub menu as well as specialties like Goose Neck Ragu with Spelt Pappardelle, Orange Zest and Rosemary, and Mincemeat Pie Ice Cream. The Pikey will be open from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m. on Christmas Day.
If you do not yet know that mixologist Damon Windsor is GOD, come try his special winter cocktail at WeHo’s “modern-day speakeasy.” To warm you up this holiday season, Damian has created “The Closer,” made with Lairds 100 Proof Apple Jack, Bigallet China China, Cranberry Juice, and Apple Juice, Served Hot. The Roger Room’s other mixologists are no slouches either. Try the “Buddha’s Hand,” created by Jared Meisler, “The Thin Man” and “The Iceland Cometh,” created by Bruce Hood, and “Something on the Side,” created by Jason Porter (Cornichon? Wasabi salt? What?). Open 6pm – 2am
Wrought iron, aged wood, Spanish moss and classic fixtures bring in the southern vibe as well as the time-traveling aspect that is the trademark of the 1933 Group’s bars. You can build your own “buck,” a cocktail with housemade ginger beer, like a mule, but we are partial to their version of a Hurricane with delicious concoction of fresh juices served in a tall glass with festive garnishes. Lean back in a cozy chair and if you’re lucky they will have an old timey band playing to help wash your holiday cares away.
Harkening back to 1915, this bar was once a gen-yoo-ine Prohibition era speakeasy. For Christmas, Townhouse will be featuring two Christmas Cocktails along with the usual menu. Try the “Absinthe Suissesse,” containing absinthe, orgeat, cream, and mint, or “Chaider’s on the Storm” with apple brandy, chai apple cider, lemon. Served HOT. Open at 7pm.