magazine | Food & Drinks | New Restaurant Openings
Mexico City Meets LA at This New Echo Park Hotspot
Alyssa Brown
byAlyssa Brown

One of the latest additions to the Echo Park scene, Bar Calo is making a big splash with anyone who enjoys grabbing a delicious mezcal cocktail and a bite of Mexican inspired food. And who in LA doesn’t enjoy that? Started by the team behind Ostrich Farm, this cozy bar opened in July with major fanfare from all the design crazed blogs and magazines impressed by the transformation from a dull strip mall space to a gorgeous little den of revelry. Every detail from the décor to the cocktails to the food menu is inspired by Mexico City, thoughtfully edited to fit the local neighborhood community.

Photography: ​Skandia Shafer

Red Velvet and Skylights

Rich hues, tropical greenery and just the right amount of sunshine pouring through the skylights give the feeling that Bar Calo could in fact be in either Mexico City or LA. An abstract figural piece by artist Jessalyn Brooks hangs above a rust red velvet banquette in the corner, while blush pink walls and a flash arc mirror complement a sturdy concrete bar. The space is cozy with just 30 seats inside, and extends to an outdoor patio that’s wrapped in plants and the warmth of that familiar LA sunshine.

Photography: ​Skandia Shafer​

Ceviche, Mezcal and Mole

Saddle up to that beautiful concrete bar and sip on the Dreamtigers cocktail with mezcal, plantain infused tequila, orgeat, lemon, fresh pineapple juice and mole bitters. If you’re up for a bite, you might opt to snack on the Ají Amarillo feta dip or the roasted garlic guacamole while waiting on Tom Kha ceviche with the day’s fish, shrimp, avocado and cashews in a coconut-ginger leche de tigre. Or you could share an order of the salt roasted spot prawns with your friendly neighbor and follow that up with the Oaxaca hot chicken drumettes with mole negro and tamarind cream. The plates here are all designed to complement a mezcal and tequila focused cocktail list, so you can expect really flavorful dishes with authentic Mexican ingredients.

Photography: ​Skandia Shafer​

The Heart of Echo Park

The husband and wife team Jaime Turrey and Brooke Fruchtman of Ostrich Farm have been a big part of the local community for over 15 years and created Bar Calo with their neighbors at the heart of their inspiration. It’s the kind of place where you can simply pop in for a drink at the bar while waiting to meet friends at Ostrich Farm, or you can settle in for the night with a handful of shared plates and sip your way through the lengthy list of Mexican and Southern Californian wines.

Photography: Wonho Frank Lee

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