Huntington Beach Nightlife Goes Upscale with ‘Culinary Sound’
Huntington Beach, just south of Los Angeles, is known for its infamous pick-up scene at bars such as Sharkeez, but it’s less well known for upscale lounges, though the city has a few. Joie De Vivre’s new-ish Shorebreak Hotel has been slowly winning over skeptical Orange County residents with a low-key yet posh lounge attached to its restaurant, Zimzala. This spring, the hotel is raising the game on its second floor destination with a new series of events dubbed Culinary Sound, aimed at a demographic hungry for upscale food and nightlife that transcends the bimbo-and-himbo scene found just blocks away on Main Street.
Every other Wednesday night (the next event is March 23), Zimzala morphs into a no-cover DJ-driven lounge with Wally Callerio spinning smart house music. But the best part of the party might be the pop-up shop, which features a diverse group of clothing designers and boutiques with everything from t-shirts, sweaters, and dresses to aromatherapy candles.
So does Culinary Sound portend a shift in Huntington Beach nightlife towards upmarket mingling and away from $3 shot specials at frat-rock dives? It’s too soon to tell, but this spring, Orange County residents seem happy to explore a new after-dark option in a city lacking in casual settings to drink, shop, and socialize all at once.