Downtown LA Welcomes Las Perlas, a Shrine to Mezcal & Tequila

March 8th, 2010 — 10:47pm


Contact: Joan McCraw,, 213.817.5321, Ext.109, 310.560.6920 cell

March 08, 2010 – Fans of mezcal and tequila, the distinctive spirits distilled from the heart of the agave or maguey plant, will finally have a real destination in the United States. Up till now, American bars have focused on only one expression of agave based spirits: tequila. Most American’s aren’t aware that tequila is really just a type of mezcal. And that Mezcal is a broad category for all agave based spirits produced in Mexico.

Agave aficionados and converts who covet the mystical spirits produced from remote Oaxacan villages to state-of-the-art Jalisco based distilleries can now visit Las Perlas in Downtown Los Angeles, a shrine to artisan-crafted mezcal and tequila set in the historic Santé Fe Building on Sixth and Main.

213’s president Cedd Moses, together with business partner Mark Verge, created Las Perlas to cater to the adventurous imbibers who populate their downtown establishments seeking to satisfy their evolving taste for high quality spirits and cocktails.

“American tequila bars are way behind what is actually happening in the Mexican spirits world.” said Moses. “It’s like opening a whiskey bar and failing to stock Single Malt Scotch. Premium single-village mezcal is the oldest and widely considered one of the best spirits in North America. And it works even better in cocktails than tequila.”

General Manager for Las Perlas, Raul Yrastorza, was most recently at the helm of Cole’s Red Car bar and established the tequila programs at El Carmen and El Dorado.

Las Perlas will feature the finest selection of mezcals and rare small-batch tequilas available in the United States. Raul will host on-going tastings and agave education to enlighten and entertain the bar’s loyal patrons.

Raul and fellow artisan-agave evangelist Julian Cox, Rivera bar chef and cocktails consultant for Las Perlas, created the cocktail list. The hand-crafted cocktails are balanced with house-made syrups, bitters, herbs, Mexican sugars & salts, and the bounty of seasonal fruits and vegetables from downtown LA’s produce markets. Las Perlas cocktails will arrive garnished with everything from wild hibiscus flowers to the Oaxacan delicacy of spicy, roasted chapulinas. An extensive selection of Mexican cervezas on tap and in bottles will also be available.

Las Perlas gained its name from Raul and Cedd’s treks to Mexico to call on distillers and producers of the country’s best tequilas and mezcals. “In Mexico, a whole new generation has discovered artisan-crafted agave spirits; preferring true mezcal over the mass produced overly-distilled products that have lost the soul and flavor of the country’s native spirits.” said Moses. “These young locals judge mezcal by looking for “las perlas”, the bubbles that form when only the best and purest mezcals are shaken.”

Upon entering Las Perlas, patrons are seduced by the allure of an authentic Oaxacan cantina. Designed by Ricki Kline, the bar’s organic decorative touches and vibrant colors echo the pride of Mexico’s culinary capital and one of the country’s most artistic regions. Hand-painted signage recounts the types of agave and names of villages and regions producing the purest renditions of Mexico’s native spirit.

A rustic, rough-hewn stained wood wall capped with wrought iron, custom wood finishes, vintage windows, and giant 100-year-old hand-blown Oaxacan mezcal bottles add to the bar’s Central Mexico ambience. Set off by a distinctive porcelain covered bar and custom-crafted chandeliers, the massive multi-tiered back bar houses hundreds of tequilas and mezcals.

Pullman booths and bar seating is available in the main bar room. Cocktail tables line the tasting room and the outdoor patio overlooking Sixth Street. A jukebox features classic and modern Rock n’ Roll and a selection of soulful Latin music

Las Perlas is located at 107 East Sixth Street in Historic Downtown LA, 90014, (213) 988-8355. Bar Hours: 7pm – 2am, Monday through Saturday and closed Sundays. From 7 -8pm during the week it will offer special pricing on its signature spirits and cocktails. Features: pool table, jukebox & live acoustic. For more information, visit, and check out Raul’s blog launching soon at .

The first nightlife developer to stake a claim in Historic Downtown, 213 continues to set LA’s standards for distinctive urban nightlife experiences and enliven the city’s cocktail culture. Set in reimagined architectural gems, 213’s collection of classics; Seven Grand, Cole’s French Dip, The Varnish, Broadway Bar, Golden Gopher, Tony’s Saloon, Casey’s, The Doheny and Las Perlas are a magnet for downtown dwellers and the city’s diverse workforce, the influential arts & creative communities, & social entrepreneurs reinventing modern city living. For more information, visit and, or follow 213 on