Golden Gopher

Bar
Golden Gopher Serious drinkers will want to make a beeline for Golden Gopher, a lively bar whose liquor-to-go booth offers still-thirsty patrons full bottles of spirits, six packs of beer, and boxes of condoms for purchase on their way out. Los Angeles United States 34.0448882 -118.2562937
3.31 15
Golden Gopher - Bar in Los Angeles.
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Ratings:
Lucas
Adriana
Jonah
Emma

Party Earth Review Serious drinkers will want to make a beeline for Golden Gopher, a lively bar whose liquor-to-go booth offers still-thirsty patrons full bottles of spirits, six packs of beer, and boxes of condoms for purchase on their... ... read full review

  • Metro:

    Red Line: 7th Street/Metro Center; Purple Line: 7th Street/Metro Center

  • Phone:

    213-614-8001

  • Links:

  • Hours:

    Sa–W 8pm–2am, Th–F 5pm–2am

  • Recommended as:

    • Night Spot

Party Earth Golden Gopher Review

The Scene

Serious drinkers will want to make a beeline for Golden Gopher, a lively bar whose liquor-to-go booth offers still-thirsty patrons full bottles of spirits, six packs of beer, and boxes of condoms for purchase on their way out.

Serious drinkers will want to make a beeline for Golden Gopher, a lively bar whose liquor-to-go booth offers still-thirsty patrons full bottles of spirits, six packs of beer, and boxes of condoms for purchase on their way out.

Popular with a diverse downtown clientele, the venue’s open layout gets packed elbow to elbow with drunken singles, making it a prime spot for meeting other party-minded people, or for squeezing into one of the large horseshoe booths to pound a few with friends.

Plush upholstered banquettes and ottomans, mirrored columns, and crystal chandeliers create an agreeable atmosphere for Happy Hour drinks and conversation, while later on, the small booths on the patio offer a refuge, albeit a smoky one, from the free-for-all of young professionals and post-grads that stream in for a night of drunken debates and heavy flirting around the gilded gopher lamps.

Usually packed to the rafters with an outgoing crowd by 11pm, Golden Gopher exudes both a casual neighborhood vibe perfect for friendly competition over the vintage table-top video games, as well as a hard-partying scene made for flirting to the beat of jukebox tunes as classic as the pick-up lines.

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Tip from Lucas:

If you’ve got a full crew of bros heading here, call ahead and reserve one of the booths. It’s free, and you’ll have a place to invite new friends to chill, and by friends, I mean women.

  • Crowd

    Friendly and ethnically diverse mix of downtown young professionals, college students, singles, and blue-collar types, 21 to 35.

  • Entertainment / Music

    A jukebox provides a great selection of both classic and modern rock favorites. Vintage table-top video games including Ms. Pac-Man, Asteroids, and Centipede. Pool table.

  • Food / Miscellaneous

    Happy Hour 5–8pm Th–F and all night Su–M. BYOiPod night on Tuesdays features playlists provided by patrons.

  • Prices

    Beer $6–$20, mixed drinks $7+.

  • What to Wear / Dress Code

    Untucked polos and button-downs with jeans for the guys, short dresses, tight blouses, and jeans for the girls. No shorts, flip-flops, baseball hats, or athletic wear allowed.

  • Hot Nights / When to Go

    Friday and Saturday nights for the biggest and most boisterous crowds. Second Thursdays of the month when Downtown Art Walk patrons end their evenings at the Gopher.

  • Close By

    For an equally rowdy singles spot, Broadway Bar (830 South Broadway) is a short walk away to grab another cocktail.

Golden Gopher User Reviews

Average rating:
Chill nice place
Gor G. Jun 7, 2013
So...I'm in DTLA to go to an afterparty for this flash mob I did that day, and its at Belasco. I'm not a big club guy by any means, but I figure I had a dope ass time that day and would like to celebrate the dope ass dancing that was had. I come up to the line and the bouncer has NO freaking idea what i'm talking about. Kinda bummed out, my friend suggests we hit the Gopher around the corner. THANK THE HEAVENS we went here, otherwise I would have never known there could be such a great place in such a..well, lets face it, sleazy ass part of town. So we jump in, no line, and drinks are had immediately. Both bartenders know how to make a stiff old fashioned. I recommend getting your drink from the female bartender, because, 1. Female bartenders are freaking awesome, and 2. Hers was a much more balanced old fashioned. Reason 1 should be more than enough though. Totally low key place, with good music going throughout, and the best part? You can pick up some beer for the ride home (not that you should drink and drive, you piece of crap). A bit dark, so be careful who you walk out with, but a good time is generally to be had. Be back soon!
Bro, you gotta go
Isabel S. Apr 15, 2013
Photo booth, Pac Man, liquor to go...need I say more? Golden Gopher is, in short, an institution. It's made a name for itself by simply providing patrons with a laid back atmosphere that welcomes anyone who still knows how to party college style. Start off your night here with a few, or more than a few, drinks. Their wide range of brews on tap should satisfy even the most seasoned of beer-drinkers. The bartenders are not only resourceful and accommodating, but great for conversation-after all, they've seen just about everything. Though it's located in downtown LA, the place bucks the trend of the club scene to provide the perfect bro experience. With the oldest liquor license in the city, Golden Gopher obviously knows what it's doing.
A "How I Met your Mother" sort of Place
Tim K. Apr 8, 2013
A good stop on the downtown tour. My friends and I ordered local beers on tap, of which they had many, in a non threatening atmosphere of off hour professionals and variations on the college theme. A good place for groups to meet and generally be left alone. Had a feeling the place was full of regulars. A good stop after work or congregating the posse before a downtown club. Beware of Barney!
To start the night off...
D'Andra A. Mar 14, 2013
Golden Gopher is a nice bar to start your night off like everyone else said. I went to Golden Gopher a few days before Christmas to celebrate graduating college with a few girlfriends this past December. One of my friends recommended it to me if I were not expecting anything too crazy or too wild. It was more laid back, with mostly a few college students/grads as well as 20 to 30 something year old's trying to hang out with a few of their friends. Everyone was mostly keeping to themselves or the group that they came with. So, I do not recommend going here if you want to meet new people or anything like that. Overall, I like that this place is really mellow, laid back. I do however dislike that it is somewhat small. That was a big turn off for me. But, it was cool just catching up with old friends, drinking a few cheap drinks and that was about it.
Maybe it's Because I'm a Londoner
David W. Feb 22, 2013
In my last couple of years in London - before I emigrated to Los Angeles - I spent a fair amount of time in what, by then, was the new hip 'n' trendy part of town: Shoreditch, Hackney, Brick Lane, Old Street, Whitechapel...I'm talking about East London (and I'm sure those areas are still high in fashion today). The Golden Gopher is always a treat for me because it takes me back to those London days, it's got that vibe. Those days were fun and hanging out in the Gopher is to. I couldn't really say what puts it in the same category; there are other bars in Los Angeles that utilize similar decor to their London counterparts, but they don't take me back home. The Gopher just vibes of modern Euro urban. And the jukebox is packed with rock 'n' roll. What's not to like?
Great for a first bar of the night
Brett C. Oct 30, 2012
The Golden Gopher was the first bar that I ever patronized at the ripe young age of 21, and I’ve been going back ever since. They have a pool table, a photo booth, and even some old school Atari games like Pac-Man. The bartenders are true mixologists, and the mixed drinks here do not disappoint. I am a White Russian aficionado (Isn’t everyone that’s ever seen The Big Lebowski?), and when I ordered one here, my bartender used vanilla vodka. It blew my mind! They also have a wide variety of beers on tap (everything from PBR to Anchor Steam). The bar can get a bit loud during the weekends, but they have a smoking patio to the side of the bar that usually has space to congregate and is quiet enough to carry on a conversation. The Gopher also has alcohol to go, so if you are there for a before-dinner drink, I highly recommend getting a bottle of wine and bringing it next door to Colori Kitchen, my favorite Italian restaurant downtown, which doesn’t have a corkage fee.
Another Meh Ced Moses Production...
Melchor M. Oct 5, 2012
I still don't get why people think it's neat that this place offers liquor or beer to go. Wow! Why would you want to do this when there is always a liquor store within a 2 mile radius in Los Angeles. Overpriced liquor and beer purchase at a bar! Yeaaaa, no. And if you can't mix a drink you like enough to buy "to go" then you probably don't really like to drink as much as you pretend to do. I guess it is just another one of this faux cool things that this and any other bar by 213 production Place is small. Which is fine if you are here during non busy hours. Other than that, this place is a pain. If you like standing while drinking near a bunch of bottle clinking wannabe fratboys (and many real fratboys one college season begins), go ahead and go here on a busy night. The redeeming quality of this place and really most of Ced Moses' bars, which if you have been to downtown you have been to a Ced Moses bar, is that the barkeeps are good mixologists. A place someone who enjoys a good cocktail will love to hate and hate to love. It's a shame that the best places to find good cocktails have been branded and packaged by one man with one bland vision.
Not completely inoffensive
Nikki L. Sep 21, 2012
There’s nothing particularly wrong with the Golden Gopher.Just like everything else in downtown, it’s within walking distance of SOMETHING to do, gets busier as the night goes on, and has really, really familiar wallpaper. The layout is boxy, with the bar along one side and seating on the other, with some space in the back and a couple dimmly-lit games. Same old same old, really. The only remotely unique thing I can remember about the place is the gopher lamps. Yes, their lamps are little golden gophers. (Get it?) Just don’t touch them. I once turned one off on an incredibly empty night and straight up got SCOLDED by a bartender. Yeah, not helping your cause, dude. I would come back for no other reason than if I was desperate and there was nothing closer.
Not what it used to be
Paul F. Sep 12, 2012
Last time I went to the Golden Gopher, I made the harrowing walk from Seven Grand. There are some parts of downtown LA that are fine, there are others where you turn down the wrong block and you're in a scene from 28 Days Later. There are a few wrong turns to be made from the two bars - so proceed carefully. Anyway, the bar itself isn't exactly a dive - though from the outside you'd think so. When you walk in, it's a narrow spot that extends far back. There are a few table top video games, a few spots to lounge on couches, a big bar in the back left, and a nice patio on the back right. The crowd at Golden Gopher is a mix of college kids, downtown gang bangers, hipsters 'slumming' it, and a few average Joe's all in their 20s and 30s. Drinks are relatively cheap by LA standards and the vibe overall is fairly laid back. The bar is generally fine - just be prepared to be hassled by the homeless beggars along the way and just outside the front door.
Stop by for a drink or two
katie c. Aug 12, 2012
This bar used to attract college students for its cheap strong drinks ($6-$7 mixed drinks) and laidback atmosphere. On a student’s budget it was the perfect place to go on a Saturday night when you wanted to go out, but couldn’t afford anything fancy. I went there recently and not much has changed. It’s not primarily a college crowd anymore, but a mixed group of 20 to 30 somethings looking for a chill spot to hang out. There is no strict dress code like many other bars in LA but a come as you please attitude. It’s a relatively small place with some seating available for small groups. The later you go, the more likely you’ll be standing for the night unless you’re able to snatch a table while a group of girls use the restroom together. The décor is simple and given the dim lighting, it would be hard to notice anything anyway. There is a narrow outdoors area for smokers and folks who want fresh air, which is a bit of a contradiction, but it is a nice open space for small talk. Overall, Golden Gopher is a great place to stop by for a few drinks before heading to your next destination for the night.
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