The location: The Ensenada Bar.


Q. What is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. A tough Mexican bar. A (fake) sign hung over the main entrance reads "Edificio Padilla" - which roughly translates to "Cook Building".


Q. Where is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. Somewhere on "Calle B", in Ensenada, Mexico.


Q. When did we see it on the show?

    A. In Episode 2 (of season 4), "The Gringos".

    Following Marissa's death, Ryan goes to Ensenada to track down Volchok. A private investigator (hired by Julie) has given him the address of a bar where Volchok has been working, so that's the first place that Ryan goes.

    Once there, Volchok is nowhere to be seen - only a no-nonsense bartender with an attitude. He tells Ryan that he fired Volchok. When Ryan asks if he knows where he went, the bartender directs him to a waitress who knew Volchok. But the waitress tells Ryan that she doesn't know where Volchok is.

    Later, Seth comes to the same bar, and asks the same gruff bartender about Volchok. Seth mentions that his friend Ryan is looking for Volchok because he "killed a girl". The bartender throws him out.

    But the waitress, having overheard the conversation, follows him to curb outside, asks if Volchok really killed a girl, and when Seth confirms it, she tells Seth that she knows where he can find Volchok.


Q. What is it actually in real life?

    A. It's a brick building housing a small row of storefront shops, including a record/music store and a Mexican ice cream shop..


Q. Where can I find it in real life?

    A. It's not in Mexico. Actually, it's in the same general (L.A.) neighborhood as the Ensenada gas station location: northwest of Exposition Park and USC.

    The building's center door address is 2809 S. Vermont Ave., in Los Angeles.

    The record/music store on its left is really Bernal's Records Shop, at 2811 S. Vermont Ave.

    The ice cream shop on its right is really Paleteria Jalisco, at 2807 S Vermont Ave.

    The brick building is on the west side of Vermont Avenue, near the northwest corner of Vermont and W. 28th Street. That's right across the street from Leonardo's Restaurant, and about six blocks south (and three blocks west) of the Ensenada gas station location.

    Here is a Bird's Eye view aerial photo of the building.

    And here is a map link.

    There are several other "Ensenada" locations in the same general area.

    [ Warning: Some neighboring areas have experienced a high crime rate: exercise reasonable caution. ]


Q. How the heck did you figure out where it was?

    A. The street numbers (#2809 and #2807) were visible in one of the episode's shots of the building. But finding the street was another matter. All I knew for sure is that there was a music/record store to the left of the main door.

    Fortunately, when I enlarged one screencap, I could see the word "Paleteria" on the right awning, which also bore the number 2807. So, I Googled "Paleteria and 2807" and pulled up an entire page of listings about Paleteria Jalisco at 2807 Vermont Ave. I checked Live Local's aerial photos of the address and was able to immediately identify the brick building.

    Once I knew it was on Vermont Avenue, I went looking for the name of the record store.  That wasn't hard. Since the street number in the middle was 2809 and the number to the right was 2807, it followed that the address to the left would be 2811. So, I just Googled "2811 S. Vermont" (hoping it would turn up a music store) and was rewarded with a page of listings about Bernal's Records Shop.



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THE O.C. screenshots from the show and all related characters & elements are trademarks of and © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
All other photos & text are Copyright © 2011-Gary Wayne and may not be used without written permission.



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