12517 W. Washington Blvd.Culver City, CA 90066
Parking: $5 Valet or Free Street ParkingDays: DailyTimes: 5-7pmDrink Deals: $4 Beer of the Day, $5 Well Drinks & Wine of the Day, $6-7 Cocktails
Food Deals: $8-12 Favorites from the main menu
I love this trend of bars and restaurants popping up in areas that need it most. First, The Fat Dog opens up on a deserted strip on Fairfax and now Waterloo & City in Culver City. There are plenty of bars on the west side but they are clustered together on Abbot Kinney, Main Street, or that quick stretch of Washington in Culver City. There is a lot of land on the west side that could use a bar, and I’m sure the locals agree, especially considering how expensive cabs are on the west side. (Seriously – does anyone know why cabs are so expensive over there?!?) The year old gastropub is located in the residential strip of Washington Blvd. My friend Kate, who turned me onto it, told me that the location used to be a family style diner. Think if your local Denny’s closed down and turned into a cool bar or restaurant; it’s that spacious.
Happy Hour is everyday from 5-7pm and takes place in the bar area only. That’s ok because the bar has plenty of seats and there’s also high top tables that line the wall. Even as the bar picked up on my Tuesday night visit, it never felt too tight or as if people were struggling to find a seat. In fact, on my visit, people were friendly enough to move their bags and such to let newcomers know where there was an open seat; a courtesy not often found at other places. Sitting at the bar, I also learned that a few people have already become regulars based on their rapport with the staff. Always a good sign!
The drink and food menu at Waterloo & City is ever changing based on season and market availability but their online menu gives you an idea of what to expect. My friend & I drank up the “Happy Red” wine of the day, Proximo Rioja, a red from Spain ($5). I also had a sample of the “Happy White,” an Italian white named Re Midas Soave (also $5). It was equally as tasty but given June Gloom’s early May Grey arrival, I felt red wine was needed to warm me up. The bar also features a cocktail of the day. On my visit, the drink was “The Prince Harry,” a $9 cocktail with ginger (ha!), vanilla vodka, amaretto, & lemon. I’m sure it’s a favorite with the ladies given the recent royal wedding.
"Happy Red" ($5) makes me happy!
The food here is so good that it is definitely on my “must go back!” list, whether it’s happy hour or not. This is definitely a place to check out with my foodie friend, The Minty. On the happy hour food menu, there are 19 (yes – 19!) options priced $8-12. While I’d usually prefer cheaper prices, all the fancy descriptions led me to believe the food was worth the cost. After chatting up the bartender for suggestions, we chose the tuna tartare ($8) and the steamed mussels ($12) with a red Thai curry sauce and a big slice of ciabatta bread to soak it all up. Not only were both dishes outstanding, but also the shareable sizes definitely explained the cost. Plus, the steamed mussels surprisingly came served with a side of fries! At the end of the meal, $20 seemed more than fair.