One of our favorite record stores in L.A. now has a bar and music venue to call its own, carrying on the tradition of loud, fun-as-hell bands in the former Cafe NELA space—now with more drinks. Try to hold on to your money as you rifle through the record bins at the back of the Roadhouse, which become all the more appealing after a drink or two at the long wooden bar that deals in bottles and cans of top-shelf beers like Modern Times and Mikkeller, just as much as it does PBR, Bud Light and White Claw. Permanent Records owner Lance Barresi’s new dive is a perfect David Lynch-meets-punk hideout, with red leather booths, a checkered floor and moody lighting, plus a no-frills patio and a lot to look forward to in 2020: outdoor movie screenings, more shows and, fingers crossed, a full liquor license. Until then, take a seat and lose yourself in whatever music’s playing, a tallboy and maybe even one of their pineapple cider floats.
L.A.’s best restaurants might get all the glory, but when it comes to cocktails, the city knows how to shake, stir and infuse alongside the best of them. This year’s tipple newcomers taught us that, and more, whether they were revitalizing an Old Hollywood haunt, dispelling the mysteries of sake, or launching a brand new distillery (where you can always find $10 cocktails, no less). Here’s our guide to the best bars that opened in Los Angeles in 2019, no matter your neighborhood or budget.