“This is still my absolute favorite place to hang out. I love all the staff, the food and drinks are amazing, and the music is always good.
Last night I went for karaoke. Had a blast with my friends, and right after we sang Hotel California, Jason Siegel, John Hamm, and Jeremy Renner got up and sang the Queen song from Wayne’s World.
Dear The Den,
I have loved you since the day you opened, and I will love you always.”
–Angel T. on Yelp
“Finally, there is a bar that is the perfect spot for someone like me. It’s not exactly divey, and it’s not too Hollywood. It’s right in the middle, and it’s perfect. Its a great bar among the tourist traps and the sceney Hollywood night spots. Once you walk down into the bar from the street, the outside is cozy with tables and fire pits. Inside, is perfect for their karaoke Wednesday nights, Sunday football, playing the many board games they have on hand or just friendly gatherings. The overall vibe is the best, because you feel like it’s a place you have been coming to for years, but it’s new to the strip.”
–Whitney L. on Yelp
“Let’s face it: Most of the dive bars you go to are either trying too hard to be dive bars, or trying too hard not to be. If they are, the experience is usually overtly contrived, and feels more fake and uncomfortable than being on the set of a dive bar used to film low-budget porn. If they’re trying hard not to be, you had to pay to get in. Good dive bars – the ones you want to be a regular at – are always accidentally cooler than they’re trying to be. For the very best example of completely accidental awesomeness, spend some study time at The Den of Hollywood.
Like you, my reflexive assumption about any establishment that adds “of Hollywood” is that it’s pretentious and noisy and probably packed with celebrity hopefuls who have spent the better half of the day blowing their hard-earned waiter tips shopping at places meant for actual celebrities in a desperate attempt to emulate that “of Hollywood” look. But The Den of Hollywood is a far cry from manufactured (read: douchey) ambiance.
Bar Manager Scott-E (like Wall-E) Anderson says, “The original concept was to make a neighborhood bar that felt like hanging out in your father’s den.” Whether or not it looks like home, they certainly nailed the feel. The Den’s stone walls and wood framing subtly provide a rustic pub feel that’s so comfortable that visiting this Sunset Strip bar feels like anything but visiting Sunset Strip. The outdoor dining area is spacious and plush, and surrounds a full-length, natural gas fire pit, while inside there are two full bars, a splendidly luxurious-without-being-ostentatious lounge area (replete with board games and big screen TV’s!), and another large dining area. That’s right – two dining areas. So is it a bar with a full menu? Or a restaurant with a full bar?
“We’re a special bar. This area of town gets a lot of rotation, but we want to make The Den a staple,” said Anderson, and after surviving its initial year this September, The Den aims to maintain its residency by supplementing incredible drink specials with an ever-changing menu. Wings and hot dogs? Think bacon wrapped dates, pork belly tacos, and the noticeably popular “Angry Mac.”
“We’re a scratch kitchen,” said Executive Chef Danny Murray. “We make everything here. We bake our own bread, we grind our own meat – even the sauces we serve are all made in house.” Murray’s southwestern-style creations are the result of an extensive education gleaned from years of schooling and working in high-end kitchens around LA. Unfortunately for the upper crust, Murray found his gifts were better suited for people with skinny wallets and fat girlfriends (instead of the other way around).
“We’re not trying to reinvent the wheel,” he said. “We just wanted to make good honest food. It’s bar food with fine art techniques…and it’s fucking delicious.” Murray and his minimal chef staff provide a complete menu all week, serving daily specials on weekdays, and a full weekend brunch menu that includes omelets, red velvet pancakes, and bacon and cheese donut holes.
The bar also hosts the best jukebox selection I’ve ever seen, live DJs on Friday and Saturday, and karaoke on Wednesdays, which Anderson says “isn’t for people trying to get discovered, but for people that probably shouldn’t be singing anyway who are just having a good time.”
People like local actress and self-assessed “sweet-potato-fry-aholic” Bernadette Tyra, who called The Den “a cute, nice little place – not too much like a bar bar, but not really a restaurant either. With the fireplace it’s so comfy – like a den!”
With daily happy hours and specials like Mystery Mondays ($1 mystery beers, $2 mystery shots!) The Den provides exactly the kind of experience you’d expect to find hanging out with friends in your father’s den, and nothing like the experience you’d expect to find hanging out in place named “of Hollywood,” making it very accidentally the best bar Barfly’s been to yet.”
–John S. on Barfly and Yelp
“Last week was Date Night for me again. Dinner and a Movie time.
Having missed the CMYE here and hearing all the hype, we puchased a group-on deal and it was time to redeem.
First thing I must mention, their regular HH is so good that we didn’t even need the group-on special in order to get a value. HH from 12-7!!!! WOW!!!
Pork belly tacos has the perfect fried crisp and light drizzled sauce to pear well with light fresh cilantro. The “angry mac” is one of the best mac n cheese I have ever had with chorizo and chilis inside, it certainly was MY dinner for the night. The ahi sushimi with cantaloupe and cucumber had the nice light feel. Roast artichoke in a lemon aoli and what could be better than fried bacon wrapped dates stuffed with bleu cheese???
If the Den was in my neck of the woods I too would call it “HOME” as Katie B. tips us all on hot tips.
Can’t wait to go back.”
–Kevin C. on Yelp
“HOLY MOTHER OF GOD.
PORK BELLY SOFT TACOS.
are you reading this? i don’t think you comprehend the gravity of the situation. fat cubes of pure, seasoned lard, in light fluffy soft tacos, swimming in a sea of cilantro, tomatoes and sauces.
yeah. there’s few things better then sex in the world.
this is one of them.
now ive gotten that out of my system.
we came here last night, and it was relatively chill. not too horrendously crowded. this place, having opened only recently (sept 2009), is situated across Chateau Marmont. it’s surprisingly down to earth, though you might spot the occasional douche.
the wait staff is extremely friendly, so please make sure to tip them well! Shauna (sp?), the bartender was just a doll, and was nice enough to entertain and chat with me during the night, when my friends (ahem!), left me to catch some tail. Jason, the manager is extremely hard working– and i’m pretty sure, the dude does not sleep. so give him a break. the bouncer, such a gentlemen! i’m so relieved everyone was so genuinely nice (read some burrrrrn reviews on the service here..).
i was surprised at the relatively low prices at this joint. due to the location, i wouldn’t have been surprised at exorbitant prices. but most of the snacks were about 6, and the glasses of wine were about 8.
the dj is usually spinning some wicked beats, and if you can’t hang with the cancer smoke, just hop on inside.
i’ll definitely come back here, maybe on a weekday. i hear it gets kinda crazy sometimes on the weekends. i need all the room i can get to enjoy my pork fat and my pinot. ”
–Sue Z. on Yelp
“Despite what some of the reviews say, I think the service here is excellent. I have been here a few times and I’ve had great service every single time. They have fantastic food and everything is reasonably priced. Jason, the manager, is very accommodating and works really hard and the wait staff is extremely friendly. The place gets a little crazy sometimes so give everyone a break on a busy night! I love this place.
Oh, and ladies! It’s creep-free. (At least from my experience..)”
–Staci C. on Yelp