The Bigfoot Lodge in the trendy Los Feliz area of Los Angeles is the magic portal many hipsters use in the area to go from downtown strip malls to a hunting lodge nestled in the Sierra Nevadas far away from the endless traffic of the urban scene. The little Tahoe-esque oasis is themed for the great outdoors, and was the start of the campfire-lodge-themed hipster hangout that rolled in a few years ago, and while there have been many imitators, the Bigfoot Lodge is still the gold standard through which these bars are rated.
The décor is spot-on kitsch with stuffed animals on the walls and wooden everythings, as well as the large stone fireplace set up in the corner. The atmosphere is decidedly more hip than the real-deal hunting cabins up and down Truckee, but with the plaid infusion of hipsters, the clients seem to be almost wearing the same things, down to the unkempt facial hair. Yes, yes, the bar does tend to attract the hipsters and in-the-know drinkers, but the atmosphere doesn’t sway from its casual, relaxed, always-fun setting.
The drinks here have a surprising amount of variety, and are served by bartenders who have an uncanny ability to become quick friends (their outfits, customized vintage boy scout uniforms, are always a good conversation starter). The drink menu first impresses with the beer selection, ranging from the Billy Dee favorite Colt .45 to the impressive Delirium Tremens, which is a go-to for any serious beer drinker. The cocktail list, while small, shows off a wide range with retooled favorites such as variations on the Moscow Mule and a classic Old Fashioned, while giving options for the more fun and flirty (one of their specialties is a drink called the “Toasted Marshmallow”, which is a concoction of sweet liqueurs topped with a flaming marshmallow), to the borderline insane (shots of moonshine go for $9). While the price on some of the drinks sometimes grazes “pricey”, you can rationalize it by saying you’re paying for the friendly, quick service, or just obliterate the purchase from your mind with a nice shot of moonshine. While the bar keeps a pretty even crowd for most nights, the bar can sometimes become very crowded; so make sure to be careful with the flaming marshmallows.
The bar usually touts the same relaxed, unassuming atmosphere associated with drinking holes up in the Redwoods, but when it gets later in the night the crowd tends to get more enthusiastic, thanks in part to the menagerie of activities the bar rotates through on a weekly basis. On any given night, you are liable to run into karaoke divas belting out their favorites, trivia nights where the prizes range from free drinks to free Del Taco, or their popular Bingo night, which usually devolves into a drinking game before you can say “B17”.
Overall the bar is a safe bet on just about any night, catering to an after-work cocktail in the afternoon hours to the nights out on the town with big parties looking to do some irreparable damage to their favorite 80’s power ballads. Ah, the great outdoors.