When you start to list all of the things that they get right – killer beer selection; fun, inclusive vibe; badass, creative food; beautiful space; enough wine and cider to keep the beer-phobic happy; TVs that are present without being overbearing; and their jukebox democracy (anyone on their wifi can select and vote for songs) – you quickly realize that Beer Belly may be the perfect pub. And when you sit down at the bar with your super dank locally brewed Double IPA or tart German-style salt beer from Orange County and a plate of duck fat fries, those suspicions are as good as confirmed.
You are likely to be pleased with whatever you order from the menu, which tiptoes right along the line of sanity with dishes like Pizza Mac ‘n Cheese and a Duck French Dip before gleefully swan diving over the edge and into absurdity, landing with a splash in a quadruple-layer 4×4 grilled cheese – that is to say, four slices of bread, four kinds of cheese and a generous portion of bacon, topped with more than a drizzle of maple syrup. It is as ridiculous and also as delicious as it sounds, a hot, gooey mess that hits just about every pleasure center your poor overloaded brain can handle.
If you’ve got the fortitude for it the dessert is excellent too, and in the same mold – deep fried Pop Tarts, Oreos, Oatmeal Cream Pie, or Twinkies with strawberry puree, as if you were ordering from the booth of the most talented stoner at the county fair. Sip that fine craft beer, and then try another; nibble on your Pork Belly Chips, then pick out another dish. By the time you get to the game you may think you’re seeing double, but you’re not actually that drunk – that really is Andre Miller running the point in a George Karl offense all over again. 532 Western Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90020; beerbellyla.com