Skipper the scuttlebutt is that we’re going to dive, dive! Is it true what they say? Ensign, don’t lose your bubble. Everyone dives now and again. But Sir a hoolie bar? Sir what would the Admiral say Sir? The Admiral favors hoolie bars Ensign, but you didn’t hear that from me. Sir, is it true sir that the drinks where we are going will hit you like a fish? Time will tell Ensign time will tell, now enough with the submarine slang, let’s get going. Sir I don’t know what you mean! Whatever Ensign, stop being sneaky, and buy me a drink…
Just east of downtown and north of Union Station is Chinatown. Drop in for a visit. Explore its streets, shop its stores or go for a cocktail. At 950 Mei Ling Way you’ll find a well worn bar, tucked away on the ground floor of a pagoda with a bright sign that tells you where the cocktails live, where they live, submariners, is at Hop Louie.
Opened in 1984 Hop Louie is an old school Chinese restaurant/dive bar chock full of local character(s). Case in point; the bartender. He is notoriously surly, in a way that makes you both love and fear him. Don’t act like a big baby and whine about your troubles. His world doesn’t revolve around you; he’s not there to be your shrink. He’s there to tend bar and you’d better be nice to him, else you might get tossed out on your ear.
Speaking of ears, listen up; the drinks at Hop Louie may not be fancy, but they are cheap. Beers go for $4 and the house specialty, the Scorpion, is a bowl of alcohol for $10. Yes you read correctly, a bowl, otherwise known as a gigantic glass. Read in between the lines Ensigns and you can see that means your wallet won’t get itself torpedoed.
Now every good dive bar-er knows you shouldn’t drink yourself in to a total stupor. Luckily for you appetizers are available in the bar for your consumption and like the drinks they are cheap. To keep your acey-deucey selves from going belly up, chow down on not fancy (don’t complain, ‘cause the sidewalk is outside) old school Chinese chow like Crab Rangoon, Deep Fried Egg Rolls or Barbecued Pork. Prices range from $3 – $12 and portions are hearty. If appetizers aren’t enough to float your boat, then pay your bill and haul yourself upstairs to the restaurant, where a larger menu awaits.
The décor and jukebox seal the hatch when diving at Hop Louie. It’s super dark and a little fragrant. The jukebox has a wide variety of tunes that run through the ‘90s. A small dance floor will provide entertainment for all if you’ve had one too many Scorpions, so drink up, everyone loves a good laugh. In short Hop Louie is a great place to either begin or end your evening.
What: A dive bar called Hop Louie
Who: Everyone, Enlisted and Officers alike
Where: 950 Mei Ling Way, Los Angeles, CA 90012. 213-628-4244
When: As soon as you can
Why: Dive bars are a nice change, the bartender rocks.
Prices: Super Duper affordable