TGIF | Tabula Rasa

THE NEIGHBORHOOD BAR THAT PICKLES ITS OWN PICKLES AND PUTS LOCALLY-MADE BEER ON TAP.

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The beer and wine selection rotate to showcase local purveyors; Tabula Rasa’s sound system is made up of a vintage record player behind the bar.

When Zach Negin and Daniel Flores decided to open up a “neighborhood bar,” they weren’t talking about the canned beer and crack-your-own-peanuts kind. In fact, what they really meant was a kind of low-key hideaway where friends could catch up over a few craft beers while listening to vintage LPs— but then again, what would you expect from the boys behind DTLA’s greatest hotspot, Bestia. Quietly debuting just two weeks ago, Tabula Rasa is situated in Thai Town (somewhere between East Hollywood and Los Feliz) where it opens its doors at 5 pm daily. The casual, cool space features industrial metal lamps, an exposed-brick-and-concrete wall mural, and a behind-the-bar record player which, at a given moment, plays anything from The Stones to Tom Waits. To drink, Tabula Rasa will frequently change up its selection of beer to highlight great local breweries like Smog City, while its wine program focuses on funky, yet approachable wines that can be ordered by the glass or liter (higher-end wines are also available in the bar’s all-glass back room). Here, typical bar bites like pretzels and pickles are anything but— thanks to Chef Jessica Wang, fresh pretzels are served with house-made mustard, the assorted pickles are pickled on site and served alongside tomato confit, roasted mushrooms and crostini; more substantial bites include late-night favorites like Cuban sandwiches and sausage with sauerkraut. In front, there are a few stools outside, and there’s even a small back patio, but if you’re coming to linger (which you inevitably will be), the place to be is tucked into one of its cozy leather booths— liter in hand.

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The late night “Cubano” sandwich; Leather banquettes.

Tabula Rasa, 5125 Hollywood Blvd.; tabularasabar.com CP

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