Los Angeles’s robust nightlife scene has time and time again lent itself to the city’s other big industry: Hollywood. Los Angeles bars have secretly played the favorite hangout of the employees of a Pennsylvania paper company, as well as the preferred haunt of Miami cops. Here are 10 bars you might recognize from TV or film, and they’re all locations you can actually score a beer at today.
Grace Kelly performs at the Catalina in an episode of Bosch | Courtesy of Amazon
Eclectic jazz can be found nightly at this old-school supper club, where musicians take to the stage in front of a red velvet curtain. You can order dinner off their Italian-American menu, or abide by their two-drink minimum at the bar. In an episode of Amazon’s Los Angeles-set crime drama Bosch, the titular detective and a colleague go to see jazz musician Grace Kelly at the Catalina.
Downtown strip club Sam’s Hofbrau is a favorite location of director Quentin Tarantino. He used it in Jackie Brown, and then returned for one scene in Kill Bill 2 (2004). In the latter, Sam’s serves as the interior of the seedy My Oh My Club, where former assassin Bud (Michael Madsen) now works as a bouncer. Though it appears as an isolated desert bar in the film, you’ll find it today in downtown Los Angeles. It is a fully operational strip club, but you can also order lunch or dinner. They serve American food, from sandwiches and salads to steak. They open at 11 a.m., and there’s no cover before 7 p.m.
The Blue Room is an uncomplicated dive in Burbank, so named for the color of its cushy booths and chairs. It plays Ferdy’s Bar in the 2000 thriller Memento, starring Guy Pearce as an insurance investigator who is unable to store short-term memories, which makes it especially difficult for him to solve the murder of his wife, yet he persists by leaving himself notes, tattoos, and photos. One clue leads him to Ferdy’s Bar, where he meets bartender Natalie (Carrie-Ann Moss).
In the season one “Indian Summer” episode of Mad Men, Peggy (Elisabeth Moss) goes on a date with truck driver Carl Winter (Aaron Hill) to seafood restaurant La Trombetta. The date doesn’t go particularly well. It’s awkward, to begin with, and it gets even worse when Carl says he doesn’t think highly of Peggy’s career in advertising. As noted by I Am Not A Stalker, the nautical-themed Koreatown dive HMS Bounty – found on the ground floor of the Gaylord apartment building – stands in for La Trombetta. They serve a hodgepodge of American food, and the drinks are cheap.
Legendary Sunset Strip venue Whisky A Go Go plays itself in the Oliver Stone biopic The Doors, in which Val Kilmer portrays Jim Morrison. The club opened in L.A. in 1964 and has a firm place in rock ‘n roll history, springing the careers of numerous bands, including hair metal acts Guns N’ Roses and Mötley Crüe. The Doors really did perform there in the 60s, and you can still catch a show there today.
In the 2009 rom-com 500 Days of Summer, Tom Hansen (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) performs The Pixies’ “Here Comes Your Man” while out at karaoke with coworkers, impressing Summer Finn (Zooey Deschanel). The bar is The Redwood, a pirate-themed downtown L.A. dive known for live music.
Lila (Jamie Murray) and Angel (David Zayas) flirt in an episode of Dexter | Courtesy of Showtime
Dexter follows the unconventional Dexter Morgan, a Miami PD blood spatter analyst who is secretly a serial killer who preys on other killers. Though the show is set in Miami, much of it was filmed in Los Angeles and Long Beach. In the season two episode “Resistance is Futile,” Dexter (Michael C. Hall) is pursued by his dangerous ex, Lila (Jaime Murray), who tails him to a bar and schmoozes with his colleagues. According to Seeing Stars, the bar’s interior is Tequila Jack’s, a Mexican restaurant and bar in Long Beach. They serve Mexican food and margaritas and offer a great view of the marina from their patio.
Two pals enjoy a drink in Seven Psychopaths | Courtesy of CBS Films
In the black comedy Seven Psychopaths (2012), Colin Farrell plays a screenwriter who becomes the target of a gangster after his best friend, played by Sam Rockwell, kidnaps the man’s dog. The pair is seen having a drink at a rooftop bar, nestled among downtown Los Angeles’s tallest buildings. You can find this same patio at Perch, where its spot on the 16th floor offers striking views. Order a French-inspired cocktail and nestle up to a fire pit at night for a perfect evening.
A band rehearses at the Bootleg Theater | Courtesy of Amazon
In the third episode of Amazon’s Transparent, music producer Josh (Jay Duplass) is searching for his girlfriend, Kaya, who plays in a band he manages. He interrupts the band’s rehearsal in a scene shot at Bootleg Theater, a venue and bar in Westlake that routinely hosts an inspiring mix of live music, theater, comedy, spoken word events, and other performances. The draw here is definitely the live shows, but they also have a solid beer and wine list. Please note that the hours reflected below vary as the venue’s hours depend on what performance is taking place.
Pam (Jenna Fischer) gets a round | Courtesy of NBC
On several occasions, the staff of The Office’s Dunder Mifflin head to Poor Richard’s, a Scranton, Pennsylvania watering hole. Though there is a Poor Richard’s in Scranton, The Office was not filmed there. The bar scenes actually took place at Pickwick’s Pub, located in Woodland Hills. They serve British fare and ale, and if you look around, you’ll find a mirror that reads “Poor Richard’s Pub” hanging inside the bar.