Photos: A Rock N' Roll Bar With A 5,000 Gallon Fish Tank Opens In DTLA
Embracing literally both the highs and lows of downtown Los Angeles, there's a new rock n' roll bar and lounge nestled in the same downtown building as Perch (one of our favorite rooftop bars in L.A.) that opens today. But instead of high up on the rooftop, this one goes down into the basement—and there's a massive 5,500 gallon fish tank that wraps around the space above the bar.
LAist visited Mrs. Fish on Thursday night for a soft opening. It's equal parts a space for live music and a place for small bites and craft cocktails. And it's owned by the creator of Perch.
We enter the bar and find ourselves walking through a metal-like tunnel down a staircase with an ornate, wrought-iron banister. Although this may seem like something that would have been an original vintage design of the historic Pershing Square Building that it's housed in, the bannister was created specifically for the bar. This is just a first glimpse at the intricate details throughout Mrs. Fish. The basement once was home to a restaurant in the 1920s, and Mrs. Fish's owner took three years to heavily remodel the space.
The three-level basement lounge is huge at 6,800 square feet. The salt-water aquarium above glows blue with tiny fish swimming in it. These fish, which have all been bred in captivity, have some growing up to do, so they might not look impressive just yet. (The owner hand-picked the fish and was once a rescue scuba diver.)
A mish-mash of different retro-style couches, in colorful hues of turquoise, red and yellow-orange, and some made of cow hide, leather and patent leather surround the room. There are more than enough areas to get comfy, and nooks where you'll find more secluded areas to hang. A Harley Davidson motorcycle and a gorilla playing the drums are encased in glasses as part of the decor. Elvisto "Elvis" Restaino, an interior designer for the likes of celebs like Gerard Butler, played a major role in the look of Mrs. Fish.
There are three bars with a program helmed by bar man Joseph Brook (The Edison, Copa d'Oro). There's everything from a Tiny Bubbles champagne drink mixed with Remy Martin to more complex cocktails like whiskey-based Vieux Carré (pronounced 'vyoo ca-ray) from New Orleans. They even have a Manhattan on tap.
The small bites are all meant to be finger foods (although it does get a bit messy without any utensils) and are created by Chef Greg Bernhardt of Church & State. The dishes can go from the familiar (beef sliders with delightfully crunchy potato crisps and perfect brioche buns) to complex (like the melt-in-your-mouth Pigs in Zen pork belly skewers with a sherry-maple-soy glaze) and high-end (caviar accompanied by crème fraiche and brioche toast).
A live band is rocking out in the center of the room during our visit and others sit around the couches and watch. Dexter Story, a musician and multi-instrumentalist, is curating Mrs. Fish's nightly performances, rotating acts from indie rock to electronic and blues. When bands aren't playing, DJs will be spinning tunes.
Mrs. Fish is located at 448 S. Hill Street, downtown. The grand opening is on Nov. 22, but it will be normally open Thursdays through Saturdays from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m.