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l.A. afTeR DArK


For that nonpareil cocktail that ends up changing your life, don’t ask the ‘tender to serve it to you at the bar—ask for it in his living room By Patrick Rosenquist


fter you’ve gotten dressed, snagged an Uber, overpaid for too many cocktails and spent the night dealing with the din of an overcrowded bar, you might think to yourself—why even go out? The obvious answer is: that’s boring! Sitting at home with a bottle of Maker’s Mark may be easier on your stress levels and wallet, but it’s a pretty lonesome and depressing way to kill a night. But what if you didn’t have to leave your house to enjoy great cocktails with friends? What if you just opened up your own home bar? Recently, a group of Angelenos has taken their love of liquor to the next level by fashioning fullfledged bars inside their own homes. Their speakeasies range in style from something you might mistake for a Silver Lake hot spot to homier, looser affairs. It’s the natural extension of the home pop-up restaurant craze, like West Hollywood’s BRK or Asian comfort food supper club Starry Kitchen. Most of the locals fashioning home bars are already involved in the cocktail business—they’re either bartenders by trade or work with liquor in some other fashion—and they’re using their own home bars to experiment with new drinks or let friends try some of their favorite concoctions.

Here’s How It’s Done

Rachel Mae Furman runs Smoke & Honey out of her Los Feliz apartment, and the spot has become 46 FRONTIERSMEDIA.COM

something of a benchmark for similar ventures. The retro-chic décor and dizzying variety of whiskies has all the trappings of a fashionable dive. The lifestyle blogger told Los Angeles magazine last year that the key to a good bar is attention to detail. “Good drinks are just one small part of it. There has to be good lighting, good music and then something to talk about,” she says. Smoke and Honey is mainly for friends and events, so snagging a seat can be a challenge. El Tigre Magnifico, located in a Glendale apartment complex, actually advertises for new patrons through an Instagram account (@eltigrecocktails). Cary Daniels and Matt Blackburn, the roommates who operate the venture, usually hold a contest of some sort (such as writing a poem) and choose a few folks to experience their creation. The pair even print out menus for their guests, with options like the Secret Handshake (Rye, Green Tea Chai, Bitters, Citrus Zest) or the Rocketman (Tequila, Cucumber, Rocket, Lime, Simple Syrup and White Truffle Sea Salt). The options are adventurous, to say the least; Blackburn is a professional bartender eager to try new drinks. Eagle Rock’s Sly Bar was built as a temple to all things geek. The name is a reference to the TV show Firefly, and the bar is littered with sci-fi trinkets like Colonel Tigh’s flask. Operators Chuck Taggart and Wesley Moore are very interested in the history of

L.A. Area Home Bars Barage

Mid-City @bartendologizm (Twitter)

Cooper Koi

Studio City @DoctorByDay (Twitter)

Smoke and Honey

Los Feliz @rachelmaefurman (Insta)

El Tigre Magnifico

Glendale @eltigrecocktails (Insta) @ETMcocktails (Twitter)

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