Drinking Locally

Space Truckin’

Hawthorne dive blasts off

By John Chandler October 9, 2009


If you put a gun to my head (and you will, trust me) and demanded that I reveal my favorite local dive bars, the Space Room would be on the short list. The snuggly booths, goldfish bowl-sized drinks, and atomic-age murals work as a healing balm on my weary soul. So when I heard that a face-lift was on the horizon, I kind of freaked out.

I’ve seen too many unique and eccentric old rooms transformed into bland, corporate lounges with zero personality. Dude, I can’t drink in a sterile environment! Fortunately, new owner Seth Leavens and I are on the same page. The main bar area is pretty much unchanged: the flying saucer lamps still hover overhead, and the cosmic art remains intact. Instead, Leavens had his design team make over the adjoining Brite Spot, also known as that dumpy little diner area that no one ever sat in. Now the room is opened up and the decor matches the rest of the place. Times 10.

The revamped dining room is chock-a-block with outer space accouterments, including Warhol-style alien paintings, alarming UFO newspaper headlines, and, of course, aliens. There’s a grand opening party tonight between 6–10. Drop by, have a bloody Mary, and help christen the new, improved Space Room.

Bonus! The menu now features breakfast served all day! It seems like such a simple thing, but many bars in town seem to have missed the memo. When you go out drinking, and eventually require a greasy pile of carbs to soak up the sauce, nothing, I repeat, NOTHING works better than eggs, potatoes, toast, and bacon. Get it? Got it? Good.

Get a sneak peek at the makeover in this web-exclusive slideshow.

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