I need to stop bookmarking joints in the busiest parts of DTLA. The parking situation is crazy! But, foodie that I am, I had to come try this interesting vegan cuisine being made in a bar, of all places. And perhaps a cocktail or two.
The space is pretty ample for couples and groups of four to eight. Singles get a bar stool. There are several TV's set along in front of the bar, as well as near the more spacious dining area for those of you bar-hoppers that love to catch the latest game while you enjoy your drinks and meal. And while it may look a little cramped at first glance, I found even the bar seating to be comfortable, with plenty of elbow room to enjoy my meal. The booze menu is pretty small, yet has plenty to please every palate, from kombucha to wine, draft beers to frozen cocktails. I tried their Piankiller Cocktail with Plantation Overproof Rum, Cream of Coconut, Orange, and Nutmeg. Not the best cocktail I've had, but this isn't exactly a 5 Star restaurant, so they are forgiven; it had a nice balance with a tropical twist, I'll give them that.
Since I'd heard so much about their Loco Moco Bowl and Viet Nom Nom Wrap, I gave them both a try. The Viet Nom Nom Wrap with tater tots was the bomb diggity! One side of the wrap was nice and crackly while the rest was soft, chewy, and had a powerful flavor that packed a bit of Asian flair and sweetness in every bite; probably from the green papaya. Those tater tots were no joke, either; hot, crispy, and perfectly-portioned to compliment this meal.
The Loco Moco bowl was spicier than I expected, with a healthy drizzle of Sriracha and Sambal sauce. It's a bit hard to taste all the other goodness packed in there thanks to the spice, but it is a carb-loaded beast that will keep you full for hours. If you love that mouth-burning sensation, this beast is for you.
Another thing they sell, but I didn't get this time around is the Impossible Burger, which I have had before and tastes just like a real burger, texture and all. Bar snacks and greens also abound at this well-established bar; just pick your somewhat healthier poison. For sides you have your choice of tater tots, garlic fries, and salads, all of which are satisfying in their own right.
If you fancy mixing health with delicious indulgence, or if you became a vegetarian/ vegan later on in life, but still love your gut-busting bar food, Beelman's is the joint for you.