Pour Haus Wine Bar
During the month of May Happy Hour City will be celebrating all things wine related. Each week we will educate you on the different types of wine, we will also show you how to make wine centered cocktails/drinks, and we will be giving you the inside scoop on some of the best wine bars & wineries around LA.
Happy Hour: $
Pour Haus- Wine Bar
Every day: 4:00 - 7:00 PM
When wandering the streets of the Arts District in DTLA for the first time, you might ask yourself where all the people are. The answer is yes, they are inside those giant warehouses, most of them are actual businesses, but the lack of foot traffic would confuse any newcomer to the area.
There are actually a lot of people who live in the Arts District, they go out and eat and drink, same as any of us. This was not always the case, given how desolate DTLA had been until recent years, but one wine bar has been there since day one, watching it’s neighborhood grow- Pour Haus Wine Bar.
The brainchild of wine expert Lorena, Pour Haus Wine Bar is actually 6, almost 7 years old, and the story behind their success is damn inspiring.
Lorena is a professional from the wine industry having worked 30 years with restaurants and then distributors all throughout the LA area, she found her home here in DTLA and the place for her very first business six years ago and never looked back.
Luck and the universe smiled upon her, but she will say she was "energetic and naive," literally the most modest woman we have ever had the pleasure of speaking with. She put everything she has into the bar that's what Pour Haus is- everything you need for a good time with quality wines.
There are board games so you can go ahead and put your phone down and enjoy some serious brainy exercise. However, we understand if you can’t concentrate, the place is literally aligned wall to wall with delicious wines, all organized so well Mariana’s OCD purred inside.
The decor itself is enough to have you wandering around the place for a bit while you decide where to sit.
There’s ample, comfortable seating, where people aren’t on top of each other, or eavesdropping on nearby conversations. Should you wander around you’ll see just how much wine is stocked in the shelves, and it is a thing of beauty.
It’s not a big place but that was always the point. In the right hand back corner are the bathrooms, which were impeccable by the way, and if you walk over to the left, through what looks like the back exit, you’ll be happy to find that it is actually a back patio.
So, even more seating for those wanting to enjoy the LA weather during these coming hot months. The shareable booth styles make it a perfect place to have a big group should you not find seating inside on a busy night. Plus, there’s a garden in the back growing all sorts of beautifully scented plants, and a peach tree! Might have been an apricot, who cares! It’s a fruit tree! It was super cool! No idea if the garden belongs to the bar, we got caught up in conversation with Lorena and forgot to ask. Still, it’s a nice addition to the unexpected outdoor area. Now that you know the place, let’s get right to the menu.
First of all, we always love a daily Happy Hour, Pour Haus’ goes on from 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM on the daily and if the prices don’t make your heart flutter, you’re obviously not a fan of quality for a discount price. Everything is $5.
We repeat… EVERYTHING-IS-FIVE-DOLLARS. To be honest we half way hesitated on keeping this place all to ourselves, it’s just too good. There’s plenty to munch on both shareable and for one person if you’re feeling stingy.
We ate just about everything we could and it was all the perfect amount. Not enough to bloat you but enough to leave room in your belly for all the wines. For the drinks, we did try every single drink you see here. Since the wine list rotates so do the options for Happy Hour (a custom of wine bars if you hadn’t caught on yet) the beer rotates as well, the solo cocktail is a staple because Lorena cares about everyone.
Yes, even you weirdos who don’t like wine but maybe got dragged here by your friends (Psssst. Listen to your friends, they know what’s up). Okay, now that you know that shpiel on to the drinks!
P.S. We invited our friend Tybo to tag along in the absence of our regular wine expert, Xena.
The HHC Team Shared:
Truffle Cheese Popcorn:
Everyone at Pour Haus gets greeted the same way, with a bowl of truffle cheese popcorn and a splash of Lambrusco. Which in general is just such a nice thing to do for patrons, true hospitality right here folks, nothing much like it. Snack on this while studying the menu
White: Chardonnay Ryan Patrick 2016 Naked Chardonnay Columbia Valley Washington State
M: Definitely a lot of oakiness and wood here. It’s well balanced though, and a lot more pleasant than I expected.
T: Chardonnays in the U.S. are traditionally more powerful than in Europe due to the sun exposure they receive here, especially ones from the west coast like this one. It’s a similar grape, but the sun here makes it fruitier and thus it creates more sugar. This Chardonnay is powerful and sweet but not too sweet, which as a European, it’s a good thing. The other flavor I’m getting is also expected because in America Chardonnays are placed in oak barrels.
Rosé: Château Pigoudet Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence 2017 PremièreRosé
M: I recognized the name coming in so I knew beforehand I'd be a fan. I can drink this all summer long, it's quite literally perfect.
T: This rose is a nobel one, the color is very very clear. I am familiar with the region, being born in the south of France also, so the colors and properties are right on. You know it comes from the coast near the Mediterrenean Sea simply by the color. This is also caused by the sun, so the flavors are a fruity sweet. On the nose I detect notes of apricot, peach, and some citrus. Those are the notes you want. This rose is perfectly subtle, delicate, refreshing, and a winner for Happy Hour. Plus, during this time of year the glass usually goes for $12-$15 due to the region so for $5 you’re getting a great deal.
M: When describing wines, there are so many flavors, very rarely do you hear this tastes like a grape, but that’s Lambrusco. It tastes like a grape, not overly sweet, we had a splash at the beginning so that’s a nice sample of their sparkling selection. Great choice for Happy Hour, it’s sparkling so it’s not too heavy. The flavors of fruit mixed with the deep red color make it truly original and it is. You can’t make Lambrusco outside of Lambrusco, Italy, same protection as Prosecco or Champagne.
Red: Ryan Patrick Columbia Valley 2016
T: This Cab is a traditional Cab from the same place as the white. It’s got all the correct properties of a Cab. It’s strong, with lots of wood flavors, and I even detect some cocoa along with the oak. My only regret here is that for Happy Hour, it seems a bit too heavy to drink. Still, a good Cab.
Beer: Pilsner, Krombacher
T: Low abv makes it easy to drink, 4.8%. Good Pils from Germany, it's a blonde, medium bodied, tastes like honey, it’s nice and decent. Great for the beer drinkers that don't like wine.
Cocktail: The Cleaner
M: First time trying Soju. I love all the ingredients, the cayenne is easily detected as it is sprinkled right on top. They do not skimp on the amount, it’s a lot of cocktail! Soju Korean liquors have wide range of ABV this one is low, according to Lorena, "it's double wine half of vodka." The lemon and ginger balance each other perfectly and that's coming from a girl who hates too much ginger.
T: Ah, the Italian version of tartines. So I have had actual Italian Bruschetta, and it is just cheese and tomato sauce, they have reimagined it here. I love the use of the baguette, with Parmesan cheese on top and pico, which is well seasoned. Just wish the bread was hotter so the cheese would've melted more but that's just me.
M: It's like a quesadilla for vegans. No cheese, no meat, just perfectly roasted veggies like bell pepper, squash, zucchini, & eggplant. The pita is PERFECTLY toasted and the cilantro aioli that comes with it made this our favorite during Happy Hour.
M: Two Oxtail tacos for $5 is a steal anywhere you go. Here, they make it with Chimichurri, which being from Colombia I adore. The meat itself was more Mexican traditionally seasoned, this is just me but I put lime and salt on everything so that's what I craved, yet the way they make them here you can tell they care. The sauce is homemade and the meat is slow-braised.
Flatbread White Pizza:
T: The size is perfect for sharing, between two people everyone gets like 3-4 pieces. The crust is crunchy not burnt, enjoyabley crispy. It's made with mozzarella, which originally doesn’t taste like much but I like the toppings it comes with. Just wish there were more cause the ratio of the cheese. It's just me probably, but I'd like more of the topping's flavors.
The Overall Experience:
Pour Haus Wine Bar is the story of a woman who followed her dreams and the universe was on her side because she deserved it. Lorena's knowledge and passion shows all over her Art's distric bar and that's why locals flock to it. She runs a tight ship and her staff is the friendliest we have encountered in a while. We even broke a glass and they made us feel okay about it, (still sorry!)
We love finding places like this but do note, this isn't the place for foodies or for your Instagram, it's a serious wine bar with pride and value in what they do and Lorena's trial to getting here deserves that much respect. So put your phone down, grab a game board, order wine, and actually enjoy the space and moment in time you're in.
We'd like to thank Lorena and her staff for serving us and being incredibly attentive. Everything went seamlessly and we enjoyed ourselves to a fault. Thank you for your time and hospitality it was truly what made this experience one of the best.
We'll be back for sure. No phones or cameras next time.
Overall Score: 5/5
Happy Hour Score: 4.7/5
We'd also like to thank Tybo for filling in for our regular wine expert. That wraps up wine month here at Happy Hour City, we hope you have enjoyed learning, celebrating and reading about wine. Don't forget to stop in at any of the three places we reviewed and tell them who referred ya. We'll be back in June for whiskey! Thanks for reading and as always...
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