Alley

When Harry Met Alley

A Blushing Speakeasy in a Culver City Alley

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If you are to deploy the phrase “I know a little place”...

Said place should be dark and intimate.

It should be hidden in an alley.

And it’d better have some rye whiskey, Al Green and a rhino head or else...

It should be Alley, a secret new bar for rye-and-cabernet cocktails accessed via alley, now quietly open Wednesdays through Saturdays in Culver City.

This place has late-night rendezvous written all over it. To begin, you’ll have a bite at the restaurant up front, Fin, or somewhere nearby—like Gravlax or Corner Door. Then, at meal’s end, here it comes: “I know a little place...” Right before you usher your date behind Fin, into an alley and up to an imposing doorman. So, yeah, bit of a trust exercise.

Inside: it looks like a small piece of the Viceroy broke off and drifted away. It’s a dusky little blue-walled lounge with circular mirrors and white-wood animal heads. Soon you’re ordering a couple Cagneys (rye with brandied cherries and cabernet) at the black marble bar while blues, soul or ’70s rock plays.

And when Al Green creates a need for one of you to run your fingers through some tassel-like curtains, abscond to the more private, couch-lined nook beyond.

Note: tassel curtains. Everyone can still see you.

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