Thunderbolt only opened earlier this year, but it already feels like a lived-in neighborhood bar. Located next to Park’s Finest in Echo Park, its low-lit leather couches, dark green walls, and speakers playing Jay-Z (like old, The Blueprint Jay-Z), make it ideal for everything from a first date to the monthly book club you’ve tried to start no less than four times. The menu is a mixed bag of hit-or-miss Southern-ish bar snacks like buttermilk biscuits and pork belly burnt ends, so you’re better off eating next door. You’re here for the drinks - which exist in that dangerous, highly coveted Venn diagram of very strong but still genuinely tasty. Our favorites are the La Frutera, with tequila, mango, and tamarind (order it spicy), and the Tropipop, which is sweet and tropical like a piña colada, but filled with so much rum you’ll forget that you’re not actually on vacation. But pretty much everything here pairs well with a discussion about hypothetically starting Sapiens with your friends from college.
More spots in Echo ParkSee more
Bar Avalon is an all-day wine bar/restaurant in Echo Park that’s one of the best-kept secrets in town.
Sage Organic Vegan Bistro
Sage is a vegetarian chain restaurant serving some of the better vegetarian food in LA. Which is obviously saying something.
Monty’s Good Burger - Echo Park
Monty’s Good Burger brings their vegan food to Echo Park that’s bigger, better, and blue-r than ever.
More Bar Food spotsSee more
The Library Alehouse
If you’re a beer person on the Westside, The Library Alehouse in Santa Monica is your place.
Highland Park Brewery Chinatown
Highland Park Brewery’s second location in Chinatown is a great spot for pre-Dodger game drinks and snacks with a big group.
Suggested by our writers
Bar Calo is a Mexican cocktail bar/restaurant in Echo Park that reminds you why you love LA.
Porridge and Puffs
Porridge and Puffs in Historic Filipinotown has Asian-inspired rice porridge, and a quiet, welcoming feel.
The Park’s Finest BBQ
A Filipino-Southern BBQ spot worth a visit. Hit it on Wednesdays for their try-it-all $12 special.
Filter and browse restaurants near you
Text us for personalized recommendationsLearn more