The key to a happy life is a healthy work-life balance. It can help relieve stress and increase productivity, leaving you feeling more fulfilled and less drained in the office and back at home. The Harbor House wants to rewrite that equation and tip the scales more toward life. Perched just above 7th and Figueroa, Harbor House’s expansive garden terrace houses wide, open spaces and seating that’s fit for a royal courtyard. The arrangements cater to a range of groups, so no party is too big or too small. Intimate happy hour? Check. Post-work shindig? Check.
Harbor House might not have a pool but their swim-up bar is anything but dry. Stationed at the center of the energy is a marble counter top where you can be close to the drinks and still bask in the sun.
Stepping out from the patio, and just beyond the tall, stone columns is a spacious atrium with large televisions affixed on the inside so that you won’t miss the beginning, or more importantly the end, of the big game. The handcrafted cocktails devised by Jordan Young shows a depth of knowledge and range of tastes and flavors including a reposado tequila spiced with cayenne provides a nice kick that is tamed by the mix of tamarind cordial, honey and lemon. A great pairing for a warm summer day is the Whiskey Punch – made up of rye, scotch and bourbon. The concoction is infused with an over-steeped Hojicha tea which is balanced against the sugary citrus oil flavors of the house-made oleo saccharum.
If cocktails aren’t your fancy the House boasts a beer tap 20 strong that exclusively serves brews within a 50-mile radius. The selection runs the gamut from lagers to stouts to sours and doubles as a tour of LA’s breweries from Mumford to Golden Road to Angel City and Eagle Rock Brewery.
Who is the mastermind in the kitchen? It’s a Harbor House secret. His identity is cloaked under a veil of secrecy like an Oppenheimer — the Harbor House his Manhattan Project; his dishes the bomb.
The roasted Brussels sprouts with chopped green apple have their individually distinct notes accentuated by the feta, pine nuts and dill. The end result is so light and refreshing you could almost get away calling it a salad.
The four, large Maryland style crab cake dish would be the ideal dish to share with a friend or colleague if the crunch from the light fry and sweet spice from the old bay aioli didn’t make you devour it all by your lonesome.
Just make sure to save room for the large, succulent herb roasted chicken leg nestled in a bed of quinoa. It is an absolute delight when mixed with the tzatziki garnished by sprigs of dill that seal the deal on the savory meal.
So before hopping into the 110 Freeway, stop by and make the Harbor House your harbor home away from home.
Written by Brian Chernick
Photographed by Caleb Thal