Mezcal is taking over Los Angeles. Bars and restaurants that specialize in the Mexican spirit are popping up everywhere. This can make it hard to pick out the best ones. Enter Mezcalero DTLA, a mezcal-centric bar with awesome food that’ll keep you coming back for more.
Situated on Broadway near the corner of 5th Street, Mezcalero is a high-end, yet affordable spot that has one of the most well thought-out specialty bar menus in the city.
Along with a healthy assortment of beverages to choose from, the food offered at Mezcalero is well rounded. There’s an assortment of taco and burrito options, a varied selection of starters, and larger entrees for those with a bigger appetite.
The space feels like a cozy, rural cantina; with brown tiled flooring, exposed brick, wood paneling, dim lighting, and plant life sprinkled around. The bar itself sports a sleek wooden counter and has ample seating, with several small tables adjacent to it. Near the back of the space there are some comfy booths and tables meant to sit larger parties. The dim lighting in this area is offset by murals that take up the entire wall.
Artisanal liqueurs from regions all over Mexico are highlighted in the bar program, put together by Nathan McCullough. Although selections do rotate as availability changes, expect to find around 70 bottles of Mezcal, 30 Tequila selections, and lesser-known, but very enjoyable agave spirits Sotol and Raicilla.
The well-trained staff at Mezcalero will help you pick out the right drink for your taste palette. Aside from the smokey characteristic that Mezcal is known for, other flavors can range from citrus and floral notes, to stronger flavors of anise. If you still have a hard time choosing what you want, they offer flights of mezcal so that you can experience the full gamut of flavor.
A unique list of specialty cocktails help set Mezcalero apart from other bars. Standouts include the Oaxacan The Garden, made with maestro dobel tequila, por siempre sotol, el silence mezcal, mint, cilantro, basil, red and yellow bell peppers, fresno pepper, fresh pineapple & lime juice; the Smoke ‘Em If You Got ‘Em, roasted corn infused maestro dobel tequila, cinnamon, burnt tortilla syrup, byrrh quinquina, fresh celery & lime juice; and the Unseaworthy, made with sailor jerry spiced rum, jamaican overproof rum, allspice dram, pomegranate syrup, coconut cream, bitters, fresh lemon & pineapple juice.
Mezcalero has set high standards for bar food in the area. There is an assortment of meat and veggie fillings for tacos or burritos, each served with hand made tortillas. From fresh, tender carne asada, carnitas, peanut mole chicken, brussel sprouts, and even tofu. A great summertime choice is the Baja style taco, with your choice of fish or shrimp, served with cole slaw made in house, cranberries, and a chipotle sauce.
Two not-so-common taco choices that are sure to set your tastebuds off are the fried chicken taco, served with a watermelon salsa and habanero mayo; and the octopus taco, served with salsa verde, avocado mousse and pickled onions.
Mezcalero DTLA is located at 510 S Broadway. They’re open from 3:00pm – 2:00am, Monday – Saturday. From 11:00am – 2:00am on Sundays.