Pour Haus Wine Bar
Hidden in a quiet neighborhood near Industrial and Mateo St lives Pour Haus Wine Bar–a nontypical wine bar locals call home. With dimmed lights, wine books, board games, wine bottles displayed on the walls mimicking a museum, and smooth music playing softly, it is inevitable you will feel relaxed with just one step through the doors. Just like you would in your very own home. Pour Haus Wine Bar was created 5 years ago being one of the very few to deliver fine wines at reasonable prices in L.A.’s Arts District. Lorena Porras, the owner of Pour Haus, began the company coming from the wine and restaurant business. She realized that there were not many wine bars in East L.A., let alone one that didn’t feel intimidating. “Wine can be overwhelming. To not know about it, it can be intimidating,” she says. With that in mind, she wanted to create a space for locals to enjoy a glass of wine and have a fun experience, hence the board games available. Not only are customers guaranteed a fun time, they can also expect surprising prices. There is a section on the wall where handpicked wines are available for purchase at only $10. “My goal is to always have affordable prices,” Porras says.
You can also order by the glass, which Porras mentioned that they were one of the first bars to offer this. Not only are their wines good, but their food also brings in a lot of traffic. With catchy names such as the Peppadew Pepper Poppers, Slice of Pi (which is priced at $3.14159 each), and the Vietnom-nom sandwich, you are guaranteed a good laugh. However, it is their popular dish of oxtail tacos that customers love. “[They’re] so easy and go with a lot of stuff,” Porras mentions. One of their popular wines is their house brand red wine called Chingadera– which is a Spanish word that translates to ‘piece of shit.’
Does it get any better? Yes, it does. Pour Haus offers special events for the community: Wine School’ed! and Sunday Brunch. Wine School’ed are monthly wine classes that bring together improv and education. Being a wine expert herself, Porras wanted to do something different. She mentioned that wine classes can be super boring so she had to challenge herself: “How could I make learning about wine be fun?” With that, improv actors are there every month to play, have fun, and allow customers to learn. “You’re laughing, wine tasting… customers have a ball,” she says.
It’s the small things that matter. This is why, according to Porras, 50% of their customers are regulars. This is why she and the servers at Pour Haus know so many people by their names. “To have a repeat customer, I knew I was doing my job right.”
Written by Jessica Flores
Photographed by Caleb Thal