Putting The “Bore” In Neighborhood

Plans are afoot to develop properties in Sunset Junction. One, the popular 4100 Bar and two, the Sunset Pacific Motel  a long-derelict vagrant magnet (more appropriately known as the “Bates Motel” since it is bordered by Bates Drive, but more importantly because it is pretty creepy).

Following The Eastsider LA’s post on the subject the ensuing comment thread was full of disgust, in large part because the developer, Frost/Chaddock, didn’t win any points for unexpectedly demolishing a group of revered junction structures last September.

I tried to muster up some of that disgust, but fell a bit short. Frost/Chaddock certainly blundered in such an unceremonious ham-fisted destruction of that batch of buildings that many in the area consider significant, if not historic. But in terms of tearing down the Bates Motel and the 4100 Bar — from which will most likely rise hulking westside-ified housing/retail structures (renderingzzzzz of which have since been posted at Curbed LA) — I’m only a little bit ashamed to admit: good riddance.

Not losing any love over the Bates Motel going bye-bye shouldn’t come as a surprise. I’d be intrigued at anyone grieving over the removal of such a rotting shell of an architecturally/culturally insignificant place that has long been not only an eyesore but a draw to transients. The 4100 Bar? I confess my reason for not joining in the collective mourning of its future demise is entirely a petty one, involving my experience during my first and last visit there seven or eight years ago, at the time in which I was continuing an informal search of Bars Who Knew How To Make A Classic Daiquiri — the way Hemingway and JFK drank ’em:

  • 1-1/2 ounces light rum
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon simple syrup or superfine sugar

4100 turned out to be one that didn’t. When I ordered, the too-cool bartender shot me a pan-eyed look and flatly informed me “We don’t have blenders here.” This was disappointing on two levels. First, I was clearly dealing with an idiot only familiar with the deplorable frozen versions whipped up by Issac on the Lido Deck of the Love Boat — no doubt served with little paper umbrellas and a skewered selection of tropical fruit bits. Second, this idiot thought I’d be the type of patron to walk into a dive-esque drinkatorium and order such a concoction. So instead of patiently explaining what I wanted in hopes I could educate one more bottle jockey I affrontedly bit my tongue, ordered a whiskey sour and upon leaving crossed that place off my libation list.

Is my indignant overreaction to that solitary and somewhat random incident enough to accept its eventual disappearance? Yep, but certainly it wouldn’t be to those who adore the place. But let’s face it, the structure is not the bar, it’s just the shell and a nondescript one behind which sits a long-vacant lot and adjacent to it is a Jiffy Lube — which is across the street from an El Pollo Loco. It’s not like whatever will replace it is the first project to diminish the junction. And who knows? Maybe it will end up reinvigorating it.