Peter Garland, owner of Porta Via in Beverly Hills, popular with celebs such as Leonardo DiCaprio, Denzel Washington, Jessica Alba and Mark Wahlberg, has just opened The Bar Room adjacent to his Canon Drive restaurant. Designed by his wife Jill Garland, owner of V Vintage, a vintage jewelry boutique across the street, The Bar Room features classic cocktails, beer and wine along with small plates of Porta Via’s favorite dishes, in a chic “nouveau pub” setting.
“We wanted a sexy yet comfy lounge in what has become known as Beverly Hills’ “Restaurant Row,” said Garland, who started Porta Via as a takeout sandwich shop in 1994. “We see The Bar Room as a casual neighborhood spot that feels like your own living room, where people can drop in for drinks and light fare until late in the evening.”
Garland purposely did not build a door between The Bar Room and Porta Via, which expanded from a one-room cafe into a two-room restaurant in 2007. “We want The Bar Room to take on its own identity and to attract a younger crowd,” said Garland. “And to help Beverly Hills overcome its reputation as an early-to-bed’ town.”
On the covered terrace fronting The Bar Room, a glass-topped communal table made from an old iron door seats up to ten guests. Inside, two intimate rooms wallpapered in contrasting colors and patterns offer moveable lounge seating. “I wanted guests’ eyes never to get bored,” said designer Jill Garland. “Everywhere you look there’s always a new color, light fixture or texture to discover.”
Guests at The Bar Room can order small plates of Porta Via signature dishes to enjoy with their Martinis and Cosmos, such as Ceviche, Chicken Taquitos, Porta Via Burgers, Sweet Potato Fries with Bleu Cheese Sauce and Grilled Pizza. Until April 15, The Bar Room’s daily “Happy Hour” from 5:00-8:00pm will feature half-priced drinks and free appetizers.