Skip to Content
Art

London Bar Inspired by Downtown LA Offers “Playful Twist on Gang Life”

There is a bar in London, England, called Gangsters [Sic] Tequila Paradise. I would describe it to you, but perhaps it is best to let the establishment reveal its concept in its own words:

“Enter down a darkened staircase and get hit with a classic LCC vibe, inspired by Mexico’s second home, Down-town LA! Expect references to “ESE’s” and “Bloods & Crips”, a playful twist on gang life, with “gang sign” art work, “pimped out” sexy bandana clad graffiti girls, and even lumberjack shirt furnishings, (no doubt buttoned to the top!).

You’ll see graffiti-covered walls depicting gun-toting clown figures and mean cityscapes. The focus of the action remains at the bar where there’s hot contest for a stool seat. Expect to be “sippin” on “Gin and Juice”.”

Wow.

And how, precisely, is this “playful twist on gang life”/crass commercialization (complete with chalk-like outlines) of gang culture and genuine human suffering on this side of the world being received in London?

Fluid London says: “Infamous for being one of the most impressive cocktail havens in London, Gangsters Tequila Paradise seems to house everything that LA vomited up. They’ve got bandana graffiti girls, ‘Bloods & Crips’ references and gang art furnishings.”

I see.

This morning, I wrote the owner of the bar on Twitter after a follower of mine identified him as J.J. Goodman.

.@JJamesGoodman Hi JJ, basing a bar concept on human suffering isn't "playful"; it's a bad look. Come to L.A. Visit some spots with me. /1 pic.twitter.com/VykWPcMy4K

— Ryan Gattis (@Ryan_Gattis) February 14, 2017

.@JJamesGoodman Meet some real humans. Understand how life for the most vulnerable people in L.A. County gang areas isn't a cartoon. /2

— Ryan Gattis (@Ryan_Gattis) February 14, 2017

.@JJamesGoodman If you're unable to come, I'm happy to sit down with you when next I'm in London (April) & we can chat more about this. /3

— Ryan Gattis (@Ryan_Gattis) February 14, 2017

I suppose we’ll have to see how that goes.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from L.A. TACO

Limited-Edition Women’s ‘Boxy Cut’ Bota Shirt and Pink Hoodie Now Available!

Rep the Taco Life and independent journalism with our new 'boxy cut' women's pink bota shirt and pink-and-blue hoodie. Now up on our online store! Every sale makes sure that we continue bringing you all the stories you all love.

July 16, 2024

13 L.A. Destinations For Tejuino, Raspados, and Ice Cream To Keep You Cool While Riding Metro This Summer

Stay cool this summer with tejuino from Compton, DTLA raspados that have gone viral on TikTok, and a true Zapotec tepache in Mid-City, all accessible when you ride Metro.

July 15, 2024

‘I Wasn’t Prepared For This:’ Placita Olvera’s Iconic El Burro Is Given A 30-Day Eviction Notice Following A Unanimous Vote on Thursday

This Thursday, the Board of El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument Authority Commissioners voted to evict La Carreta despite attempts from the family, community, and even the city council to save it. 

July 13, 2024

Downtown L.A.’s First Proudly Queer-Owned Dispensary Is Thriving

The disco ball and neon signs illuminate a wall dedicated to LGBTQIA+ products at Green Qween. Despite the queer community being at the forefront of medical marijuana usage during the HIV and AIDS epidemic of the 1980s and 90s, today, queer representation remains low in the cannabis industry.

What To Eat This Weekend In L.A.: Whole Lobster Katsu, Cannabis Omakase, Smoked Brisket Agnolotti, and a Carne Asada Fest Discount

This Saturday, EVERYone is invited to the carne asada. Asada Fest, to be specific. Plus, two new restaurants team up to bring an enticing new menu at Echo Park lake's boathouse restaurant.

July 12, 2024
See all posts