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  The  Easy Reader's  " Best Of " Hermosa Beach for 2005 

The "Best of the Beach" 2006 - From: the Easy Reader

The Best Of Drinks, Parts I - III


Best of Food 2006 Parts I - VI

Best of Life, Parts I - II

Best of Music 2006    Best Skate and Surf    Big, colorful bob art, Parts I - II


The Best Of Drinks, Parts I - III

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The Easy Reader – March 23, 2006

Best of the Beach


The Best Of Drinks, Part I


by DebL


Chances are your boss won’t go looking for you a cheap pitcher of beer, which is one reason the Poop Deck gets the BoB nod for best place to hide from your boss, as well as best cheap pitcher of beer. Photo by Kevin Cody

Cheap Pitcher

Poop Deck, The Strand, HB -
There is no better way to celebrate your patriotism and honor our past and present war heroes than with a pitcher at the Poop Deck. War Veteran and owner Bill selected his crew, four Vietnam vets representing the four legions of military service, back when they returned from the war with no other employers willing to give them a second chance. Just don’t question their military affiliations or you’ll start the boys warring amongst themselves: “Yeah I was trying to take a leak in peace when jackass says to me, ‘You know, in the Army they teach us to wash our hands after we use the latrine.’ So I sez right back to him, ‘Well in the Air Force, they teach us not to piss on ourselves!’”

Just so you know, when it’s “us against them” they rally together and so should we. God bless America.

Runner-up: Scotty’s.

Best place to hide from the boss

Poop Deck -
The very best way to hide from the boss takes some foresight. When you get hired, mention to your boss that you have a twin who hangs out around town, drinking and goofing off. Then later, when your boss catches you drunk under the pier, pretend like you don’t recognize him. He’ll think you’re not you, you’re your twin!

But failing that, the patio behind the old-school, nautical-themed Poop Deck is a great place to hang out and a great place to hide, as cozy and protected as the indoors but out in the open air!

It’s also fun to hang out inside the joint, but your boss could skip down the Strand, whip his head in the front door, and see you at the bar. Then you’d have one of those awkward moments when you try to look casual and continue suave.

But back on the patio you can talk freely and laugh heartily without keeping your head on a swivel like a wide receiver running a middle pattern in front of the linebackers. Your high strung, type-A boss is too busy to wander back to the patio unless he really wants to find you.

But it’s good to be armed with an explanation for him just in case. An alibi would be good, and failing that a good sob story might help. But if you choke in the moment, fall back on that last resort, honesty. If Mr. Buzzkill catches you at the end of your three-hour “lunch” at the Poop Deck, look him right in the eye and say, “I can’t go back to work. I’m too pooped.”

Best cheap pitcher runner-up: Scotty’s, The Strand, HB

Best place to hide from your boss runner-up (tie): Outdoor tables, Mickey’s Deli, Hermosa, Thirsty Club, Redondo – Robb Fulcher

Best sake bar

Club Sushi, Hermosa Ave, HB -
The sake list at Club Sushi may not be as extensive as others, but it is top notch. One rice wine not to miss is the Nygori Sake. “Thick and creamy with a hint of sweetness,” says longtime bar manager Terrence Moriarty. The real enjoyment, of this great spot, is the people watching that goes with your celebratory shots of wine. Try to get a spot at the bar and watch the South Bay crowd roll by.

Runner-up: Sushi Sei

Best Tequila bar

Pancho’s -
Margaritas can be tweaked to treat anyone’s fancy be it sweet and mild or all out turbo firewater and all are available at Pancho’s. Boasting over 100 types of tequila including one at $50 a shot and one at $1,500 for the bottle, Pancho’s uses real fruit and fruit liquors instead of mixes to make its strawberry, mango, raspberry, peach, and banana margies. The most popular, the “Naughtie Maggie,” is Pancho’s version of the Cadillac Margarita with Cuervo Gold, Grand Marnier and a “secret ingredient” that may or may not be legal. Owner Abb Lawrence says, “Its best enjoyed with a designated driver.”

Runner-up: Café Boogaloo



The Best Of Drinks, Part II



by DebL


The Northend Bar and Grill was Hermosa’s Cheers before their was a TV Cheers. One reason is bartenders like Christine. Photo by Adrienne Slaughter


Best bartender

Christine, Northend Bar & Grill -
Hailing from Virginia, Christine moved to the South Bay five years ago and has been tending bar at the Northend the past four years. She began her South Bay bar career bouncing around several local haunts. When asked what about bartending she enjoys most she says, “Really, it’s the Northend Bar that makes it so great. I work for a fantastic couple, have fun coworkers and great customers.” As a matter of fact you can find her there most Saturdays, her day off, for breakfast and mimosas. “If I didn’t work here I’d probably hang out here even more.” You never hear anyone saying that about a desk job now do you?

Runner-up: Justine, Beaches, Manhattan each Boulevard, MB

Best happy hour

Aloha Sharkeez -
If you go to Sharkeez with four friends during Happy Hour, weekdays from 3:30-6 p.m., don’t make the mistake of ordering four drinks because you will get eight – or maybe that isn’t a mistake. The deal is two-for-one and if you don’t know then it’s your own fault. With 19 TVs, a satellite receiver to catch any and all sporting events, high-energy music, free chips and salsa and a drink in each hand you know why it was voted the Best of the Beach.

Runner-up: Shellback Tavern

Best pint of Guinness

Grunion’s Mike McLaughlin -
Guinness always taste best when poured by a native Irishman and Grunion's owner Mike McLaughlin of County Donegal Ireland does not disappoint. McLaughlin has been in America for 30 years but frequently jets back to the motherland to keep up with tradition and that sexy brogue of his. He and Irish-American Ken McClellan took over Grunions from Bob Beverly on April first seven years ago - and that's no foolin! They recently added three 93 inch high definition TVs to the 40 some odd monitors, which line the joint and can air just about any sport there is -- even those fake ones we Americans keep adding. Couple that with great bar food, specialty lunch and dinner items, killer Happy Hour, a full bar with plenty of Irish Whiskey, great staff and fun customers and you have the whole package. Slainte!

Runner-up: Pitcher House poured by Jimmy

Best liquor store

Manhattan Fine Wines / Artesia, HB -
With the best prices in town, in general about 35 percent below retail and an incredible selection, owner Joe Chiewphasa runs a shop that’s as close to an old fashioned general store as you can get in LA. He specializes in rare and hard to find wines and will special order anything you throw his way. Basically if it is sold in this country, Manhattan Liquors can get it for you.

Runner-up: Abe’s Liquor, Pier Ave & Monterey Boulevard, HB


The Best Of Drinks, Part III


by DebL


Anyone who played soccer with the legendary Georgie Best and drank with him after the match had better know how to pull a great pint of Guinness, which may explain why Mike Mclaughlin got the readers’ nod for this one. Photo by Adrienne Slaughter

Place To Drink Yourself Around The World

Naja’s Place -
Naja’s on the International Boardwalk in King Harbor has been a landmark for almost as long as there’s been a harbor. Their claim to fame is a beer selection ranging from rare Belgians to all of California’a micro breweries. Naja’s has 76 beers on tap and over 400 bottle brands. It’s hardly suprising that the local Strand Brewers Club meets there. The next meeting is Wednesday, April 12.

Runner-up: Rock N’ Fish, Manhattan Beach Boulevard, MB

Best Martini

Side Door -
Just the name Side Door sounds like a place where James Bond might be found sipping his favorite stirred drink. Here’s a room as comfortable as an Englishman’s private club, where the management understands the importance of everything being just right.

Runner-up: Mangiamo’s, Manhattan Ave, MB

Neighborhood Bar

Northend Bar & Grill -
Put a bar in a densely packed neighborhood with no parking and you better hope you’re on good terms with the neighbors. There are no complaints about the Northend because as likely as not, when the neighbors are home, they’ve just come from the BoB’s neighborhood bar.

Runner-up: Shellback Tavern, Manhattan Beach Boulevard, MB

Best cold coffee

Coffee bean -
Move over Frappuccino. Coffee Bean’s whipped cream-topped, blended frozen drinks are favored in the South Bay. They come in mocha, vanilla, caramel, white chocolate, green tea, and black forest. Black forest is a crazy blend of mocha, cherries, and chocolate covered espresso beans.

Coffee Bean claims it is the quality of its product and using powder instead of syrup, which sets its frozen drinks apart.

Watch out for refreshing lemon and mango flavors this spring.

Runner-up: Java Man. – Cynthia Dizikes

Best chai latte

Coffee Bean -
Its creamy and delicious with just a bite of spice. Coffee Bean’s chai latte is one of its most popular tea choices and perfect for a blustery day on the beach. Coffee Bean’s chai latte is made from a tea extract with a cinnamon flavor and is unique because vanilla powder is added to make it sweet.

Runner-up: Java Man. – Cynthia Dizikes



The Hermosa Beach Neighborhood Association

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