Venue: The Edison
Address: 108 W 2nd St #101, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Hours: Wed – Fri 5 pm – 2 am, Sat 8 pm – 2 am
Best Days: Fridays, Saturdays or Special Performance nights
A century ago in 1916, the first power plant in Los Angeles was commissioned to serve the small town. Many years later, this power plant would see a sprawling super-metropolis sprout up around it, and eventually the plant was decommissioned. Then, in 2008, the decommissioned plant was transformed into a decadent steam-punk speakeasy type of restaurant and lounge, and thus the Edison was born.
To be upfront, the Edison is still our absolute favorite venue in downtown LA even after 10 years of being open. There is no other place quite like it. The mix of history, futurism and 1920’s charm makes it one of the most unique venues anywhere, and we mean anywhere on the planet. The venue has an underground appeal because it literally is underground and takes you back to an era when jazz music exploded and the good time were roaring in the 1920’s.
The 1920’s them is partially created by the very strictly enforced dress code. If you ever plan to visit, be sure to give it a good read through as they make zero exceptions at the door. But dressing fancy is a small price to pay (but is looking good really a price to pay?) to experience the authentic charm of the venue. The space is quite massive, with 2 bars, a stage and several dining areas next to old power generating equipment that now serves as decoration. You can even dine inside an old coal furnace, complete with functional hatches.
The food at the Edison is an eclectic assortment of dishes, but a must have are the signature beer nuts. They are an insanely good snack and we have to have them about 90% of the time we are there. What’s more impressive than the food options are the drink selections, as The Edison’s drink and cocktail selection is very extensive. And for the 1920’s connoisseur, they feature a hefty selection of absinthe. And on weekend, an actual green fairy can be spotted with a chest filled with vials of the night’s specialty absinthe. One time when she graced us with her presence we had a most decant absinthe that was blended with elderflower.
To top it all off, The Edison features a variety of different entertainers on evening, from Cirque Du Soleil style aerialists to burlesque shows, The Edison keeps it’s routine fresh and enjoyable for all. This place is a must visit for anyone in LA, as after a decade of business, the fact that it’s still thriving is a testament to how an integral a part of the Los Angeles experience it has become.