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Californication in Venice Beach and Red Jacket Tuxedos at Dan Tana’s

January 4, 2010

Californication at Venice Beach and the Townhouse Bar est.1915

If you watch the HBO series Californication these pictures should look familiar. I’m not sure what else I can add to what most people already know about the place. It’s a magnet for bodybuilders, freaks, roller skating rastas, and everything that has to do with alternative life styles. I enjoyed the opportunity to walk around and take in the sights and have a few coctails. This was my last night in Los Angeles. Tomorrow I was headed up the legendary California Highway 1 to Big Sur.

An oasis of retro-cool in a sea of ALT lifestyles. The Townhouse bar is one of those places that just oozes charm and class. I find a good dive bar is usually more relaxing than say the Polo Lounge in Beverly Hills. We sat down and I ordered a Pabst Blue Ribbon that was served in a frosty cold mug. My tourguide and host made the mistake of ordering a Sprite. The sixty something bartender stopped and completely froze in place with one vein throbbing on his forehead. Slowly he turned to me and then looked my friend up and down before selecting the correct button on the soda gun and filling the glass. “That will be seven dollars, the beer is free but the goddammned Sprite is S E V E N D O L L A R S. I tried to make up for this faux pas by ordering a Schlitz and a double shot of tequilla to make amends. I could have spend an entire night in the Townhouse but the night was young and we were headed into downtown Hollywood.

Random storefronts along Venice Beach. This is an extra, extra horrifying t-shirt.

Back in town we hopped into Casa Escobar for a few drinks and enjoyed torturing the bartender asking for the “Pablo Escobar Especial” Come on man, you can hook us up. I’m not DEA honestly, look at what we had to drink, do you think a Fed can handle that sort of action? What kind of place is this? Bring me the Pablo immediately! We left before the bartender could vault over the bar and throw us out. This is a great place to stop for late night drinks.


Dan Tanas in West Hollywood is legendary. Everybody who is anybody as been there at least once. It’s seriously old school with a ton of charm and class. If you have a need to release your inner Dean, Sammy and Frank this is the place.

It’s always “ring a ding ding time” in Dan Tanas

After dinner and drinks we wandered out into the Hollywood evening and headed for the Dresden but were driven away by a ridiculous cover charge. After having a fantastic day in Los Angeles I headed back to Beverly Hills for the night. Tomorrow I was leaving for the coast and Big Sur. It would be great to be back on the road again.


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