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Pleasantly scruffy and charmingly low-key, the Prince o' Whales is the kind of bar they just don't make in Los Angeles these days. This is not a place to see and be seen or, heaven forbid, sip the latest mixology trends. This is a place to drink and, if you're feeling ambitious, play a game of ping pong or pinball. There's kind of a half-hearted nautical motif going on — whale carved on the door, ship's mast suspended over the dark wooden bar — but the real appeal is the way such a large bar manages to feel cozy rather than cavernous. Perhaps it's because the place is broken up into three rooms, two with full bars, plus a patio. (We counted no fewer than 19 TVs.) The food on offer — potato skins, burgers, a $13.50 steak — is strictly to soak up the booze, not show off anyone's skill in the kitchen. That means that if you order the “Calorie Counter,” you won't get kale but rather a hamburger patty with cottage cheese on the side. It's hard to imagine anything has changed here since 1983. There are even ashtrays on the patio. That's something you really don't see every day. —Sarah Fenske

335 Culver Blvd., Playa del Rey, 90293. (310) 823-9826, princeowhales.com.

LA Weekly