The New Speakeasies

Seek out these three new backroom bars

We get the allure of hole-in-the wall restaurants, tucked-away bars and places where obvious signage is uncool: Everyone loves a secret spot. But these three new bars–small, modern-day speakeasies for great cocktails, wines and audible conversation–take the idea of under the radar to an impressive level.

The Varnish Just look for the door with the cocktail-glass sign to find this backroom bar at Cole's. Expect dark wood, low-lit sconces and expertly crafted classic cocktails. Drink: Remember the Maine (rye and Cherry Heering; $11). The Varnish at Cole's, 118 E. 6th St., Downtown; 213-622-9999 or thevarnishbar.com

The Wine Room at Delancey Sneak away to this purple velvet hideaway for small-production wines from Italy and California. Drink: Flights of three for $15. Delancey, 5936 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; 323-469-2100 or delanceyhollywood.com

Bar at Muse You can only get in with a dinner reservation for Muse, but the seasonal cocktails and patio balcony make a perfect warm-night destination. Prices are commensurate with Bev. Hills, but nothing Judge Judy–who we spotted here one night–would scoff at. Drink: Bitter Cache (gin, grapefruit, Campari; $16). Muse at Montage Beverly Hills, 225 N. Canon Dr., 310-860-7800 or montagebeverlyhills.com