7156 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA | Directions 9004634.090675 -118.346379
Mon - Fri, 4pm - 2am; Sat - Sun, 6pm - 2am
Neighborhoods: West Hollywood, Central LA
The first thing you'll notice at the Formosa Cafe, once your eyes adjust to the dark vibey interioor, are the signed headshots of celebrities on the wall. Movie stars and studio heads have been eating and drinking (but mostly drinking) here since 1925. Come for the mai tais, stay for the lobster truffle mac-n-cheese. Formosa Cafe, now a preserved L.A. landmark, has a great happy hour from 4 to 7pm.
A hollywood classic, the re-vamped cocktail program at Formosa makes this historical restaurant a new must-visit in LA.
Historic Hollywood hot spot gets a menu-makeover to draw new generations of deal-making diners. – The Scene
Opened in 1934, this trolley-car restaurant has preserved its star-studded history, making it an ever-trendy watering hole in West Hollywood. Dimly lit, the two red and ebony bars are encased by walls of vintage photographs. Hundreds of black and white portraits, from Marlon Brando to Humphrey Bogart, are autographed evidence of the bar's former patrons. It's also a prime landmark for out-of-towners who crave a taste of the classic Hollywood scene. Industry folk still flock to the bar's happy hour for specialty mai tais, martinis and snacks.
Maybe come for happy hour if you just want to drink and eat cheap food. – First off let me say that I think I came here at the wrong time. I went here last night at around 8pm. It was like a ghost town. It was dark and dingy and was really just a typical little dive bar. We were starving so we decided to stay anyways and order some food. We had pad thai, chicken satay, and calamari. Everything was very bland. I don't really understand how pad thai can be bland considering that it is not a particulary difficult or advanced cuisine to make and is basically considered fast food in Thailand. Anways, it was very very very dark in there and I am not sure if it was a good or bad thing that I could not see my food. After reading the postings about happy hour I can see how maybe $4 chicken satay paired with a beer or a very basic cocktail (i.e. vodka tonic, rum and coke) would be a draw. However, even when I have happy hour, I still want to enjoy reasonably memorable food. This is not the place for it. The couple next to me left right after being seated, commenting that they thought it would be nicer inside. Hopefully someone will save this L.A. landmark.
Had it all! – I jokingly challenged my friend to find us place in Hollywood where we could: drink, smoke, eat, and sit comfortably. She took us here, and it was a total success. We beelined to the back patio, and it had it's own little bar! The bartender was really nice, and took the time to chat with us. We ordered beers and potstickers, and both were really good. I highly recommend this place!
UPDATED MENU & HAPPY HOUR!!!!! – The menu is now a hybrid of some of the great, classic Chinese dishes that regulars had come to love (Kung Pao Chicken, Fried Rice, etc.), as well as new variations on a few of the old chef's creations--new & improved Kobe Burger and Lobster Mac & Cheese, among others! The menus still mention "tapas-style", but the majority of the dishes are regular sized. Be sure to ask the server about any specials not listed on the menu--they usually have some tasty treats hidden away. And try the Molten Chocolate Souffle--it's more of a rich cake than a true souffle, but it's WORTH THE WAIT!!! Happy Hour is one of the best deals in town! $4 appetizers (ribs, chicken shu mai, chicken satay, veggie spring rolls), plus $3 beers, $5 wines & sake, and $5 specialty drinks (such as the sublime Pomegranate Cosmopolitan!). Stop by for Happy Hour, 4 to 7pm, Monday through Friday. The back patio is open at night, Wednesday through Saturday--on the weekends, check for table service with a cocktail server on the patio. Formosa's relaxed upper deck is typically open on the weekends during the summer, but fair weather and demand may prompt them to open it sooner! It's a great place for a date or a party! Weekdays are more relaxed, but the place is packed on the weekends. Overall, Formosa has retained its relaxed, chill vibe and has begun to focus on service--servers are all laid-back and friendly, atmosphere is hip, but not pretentious!!!
A good time every time – I always like going here whether it's for some quick dinner before a night out or a party on the roof- the atmosphere is great, the food always good and the cocktails are well mixed. I always feel very "Hollywood" here, but not in a bad way.
Quirky menu, great prices – My husband and I discovered the restaurant late at night after a friends play. We were told that the menu had just beed redone, it was FANTASTIC! I had a perfectly grilled piece of salmon in a tasty, mild curry sauce. It was served with edamame, delish! My hubby had the catfish and mashed potatoes in a creamy bacon sauce. All of the flavors mixed well together and I for one, can't wait to go back.
no idea when you were there.. but went on friday. and this place is GREAT – sliders sliders sliders wow to the owners and chef gladstone for creating a bold small plate menu in an historic place like formosa.
loved the flavors, sliders were the best.
Bad Fast Food!!! – Just aweful fast food menu and oily food gross tasting dishes with no selection at all and no real meals. Don't waste your time.
Good place to chill – The place was too dark in my opinion but they had good drinks and excellent service. It's a good place to go to with a few friends if all you want to do is sit and talk.
love the food to dark for a restaurnat – great lounge bar food. lots of flavors. average service but friendly.. after i ate.. went to have wine at new bin 8945. great wine there but lousy food... so eat at formosa.. drink wine a mile down the road!!
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