Order drinks with personality and pal around on a pint-sized dance floor at this ‘90s-themed nightspot

By Jennifer Pellerito

The Little Friend | 822 Washington Blvd., Venice | thelittlefriendbar.com | (310) 747-6969

The Little Friend’s charming drinks & bright pink dance floor make
it easy to party like it’s 1999

Find your scrunchie. You’ll want to bring it along to The Little Friend, the new ’90s-themed cocktail hideout curled up beside Sunny Spot on Washington Boulevard. A spinoff of Silver Lake’s mega-popular bar The Friend, The Little Friend comes to the Westside thanks to co-owner and street artist Andre Saraiva, along with partners Marius Markevicius, Mickey Madden (of Maroon 5 fame) and Jared Meisler.

Roll up with your crew and enjoy the retro scene at The Little Friend, all decked out in millennial pink and too-cool-for-school teal. Be sure to a catch a selfie at the throwback photo booth at the entrance.

The pink floor stands as a knockout feature, but the little details and yellow accents add up, too. The brass hardware at the bar paired with a white marbled countertop is dressed to impress. Paper straws swirled with blue stripes make drinks themed like your pals’ personalities go down easy.

When I go there, the bartender’s drink recommendation is The Contender, a spin on a Manhattan featuring Smooth Ambler whiskey, cynar, cherry heering and a flamed orange peel. Rivaling that is the most-ordered cocktail on the menu: The Joker. Altos Blanco tequila, ancho verde chili, lime, agave, and grapefruit bring on a satisfying sweet-and-sour pucker. Its orange tinge makes a great match amid the vibrantly colored room. Even more whimsical drinks on the menu resemble nicknames for peeps in your friend group — The Traveler, The Gossip, The Vegan, The Transplant. (Cocktails start at $12, with beer and wine also available.) Choose which alter-ego themed drink you prefer, and then let the night spin away.

Live deejays and a disco ball at the heart of the action create a trendy, direly-needed nightlife spot for dancing this side of the 405. Rejoice over retro ’90s hip-hop, boogie and disco on the bar’s regularly scheduled deejay nights with dance parties. The dance floor may steer on the smaller side, but there’s always enough room to bust a move, right?

Up next on the calendar is multi-hyphenate musical artist Bryden Lando mixing sounds on July 3, DJ Osamu Nishimura on July 4, Aaron Kagen on July 5, and a late Saturday afternoon party on July 6 featuring downtown L.A.’s Pakkard Studios, followed by Ryland and Mailbox raising the roof with late-night jams.

More of an early bird? Happy hour happens from 6 to 8 p.m. daily.