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Best Wine Bar that also serves good food in LA?

dkantt Nov 24, 2009 10:19 AM

Hi all! I will be visiting LA soon and I'm looking for the best up-scale Wine Bar that also serves great food. Any recommendation you may have will be helpful!


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  1. m
    MahiMahiFish RE: dkantt Nov 24, 2009 11:28 AM

    The Must Wine Bar

    2 Replies
    1. re: MahiMahiFish
      cls RE: MahiMahiFish Nov 24, 2009 12:08 PM

      agreed good, but far from upscale.
      Palate perhaps.

      1. re: cls
        MahiMahiFish RE: cls Nov 25, 2009 06:55 AM

        You are right.
        Now that I'm reading the post more clearly, I see it asks for slightly different things. The title I read asks for "best wine bar w/ good food". The poster then asks for "best upscale wine bar w/ great food".
        I think the the word "upscale" definitely brings it to Palate or AOC.

    2. t
      TracyS RE: dkantt Nov 24, 2009 11:48 AM

      I'd say AOC hands-down.
      On the casual side, there's BottleRock

      1. j
        JBC RE: dkantt Nov 24, 2009 12:19 PM

        One of the, if not "THE", largest wine cellar in L.A. is at Vanentino in Santa Monica with 2,500+ selections. They have the Vin Bar where one can order food at:


        1. J.L. RE: dkantt Nov 24, 2009 04:34 PM

          Bacaro LA, near USC.

          1. w
            will47 RE: dkantt Nov 24, 2009 09:34 PM

            I like AOC, but Lou is also pretty good.

            1. Uncouth Gourmands RE: dkantt Nov 24, 2009 10:11 PM

              My vote is Bodega Wine Bar. Average food but all of the wine is priced the same and affordable.

              1. kevin h RE: dkantt Nov 25, 2009 12:30 AM

                AOC comes to mind. And how 'bout Tasca for a more tapas-centric flair?

                1. Servorg RE: dkantt Nov 25, 2009 07:00 AM

                  A bit of a "left field" recommendation, but a very interesting place - Bar Pintxo in Santa Monica.


                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Servorg
                    cls RE: Servorg Nov 25, 2009 07:21 AM

                    No, center field.
                    I think it meets the criteria, although food reviews have been mixed.

                    1. re: Servorg
                      yogachik RE: Servorg Nov 25, 2009 04:21 PM

                      Bar Pintxo is a good rec. I'll add Primitivo.

                    2. m
                      mc michael RE: dkantt Nov 25, 2009 08:28 AM

                      Based on a Virbila review sent to me yesterday, it appears Noir in Pasadena may be a candidate. Anybody been?

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: mc michael
                        carter RE: mc michael Nov 25, 2009 04:11 PM

                        Try Vertical on Raymond in Pasadena's Old Town if in that area. David Haskell, the wine guy, reallllly knows his wines. Have not eaten the food since he took over as there is also a new chef and the menu was changed.

                        Vertical Wine Bistro
                        70 N. Raymond Ave, Pasadena, CA 91103

                        1. re: carter
                          mc michael RE: carter Nov 26, 2009 08:44 AM

                          Vertical, true to its name, does pour decent flites.

                        2. re: mc michael
                          Will Owen RE: mc michael Dec 20, 2009 10:27 AM

                          Our wine bar experience is limited, but I can recommend Noir for both wine and food. "Upscale" it may or may not be; prices are quite reasonable, even for the likes of us, and the atmosphere is quite casual and unpretentious. Best part for me is that it's well away from Old Town, but as it's situated between the Boston Court theatre and the Ice House it's not exactly out in Siberia either.

                        3. Bob Brooks RE: dkantt Nov 25, 2009 03:24 PM

                          Lou, in Hollywood gets very good remarks here.

                          1. LATrapp RE: dkantt Nov 25, 2009 05:37 PM

                            Toss my vote in the AOC box.

                            I'm also a fan of Bar Pinxto, but not knowing your specific criteria for 'up-scale', I'm afraid that Bar Pinxto could possibly fall into the 'casual' category.

                            Back to AOC - If you enjoy sitting at a counter or bar for your meal (personally I love it when there's some cooking, mixing, or pouring to watch), the charcuterie and cheese bar is small and very fun. If you drool at just the right moment, it's possible that whoever is tending to the meats and cheese might throw a scrap your way;)

                            The bar that serves wine on the other side of the room is not as exciting for me as it just has a huge array of those automatic dispensing wine coolers. I'd prefer a table. If you're looking for quiet, upstairs might be the answer but it can also feel removed from the scene.

                            Good luck and report back!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: LATrapp
                              Riccardo RE: LATrapp Dec 19, 2009 09:52 PM

                              That dispensing apparatus is called a Cruvinet. It's not automatic, and it's not necessarily a cooler (the reds aren't cooled, naturally). What a Cruvinet does is displace any spoilage-inducing oxygen that'd be in the bottles with inert gas (nitrogen), preventing oxidation of the wines. The breadth of A.O.C.'s Cruvinet-protected wine offerings is another mark of distinction for this exceptional restaurant.

                            2. r
                              Robert Thornton RE: dkantt Nov 27, 2009 09:06 AM

                              If you're willing to go to Glendale, Palate gets my vote easily.

                              If you want to stay in L.A. proper, then I'd be another vote for AOC.

                              1. d
                                dkantt RE: dkantt Nov 28, 2009 10:38 PM

                                Thanks a lot for all the help!! This was really helpful!

                                1. w
                                  whatsfordinner RE: dkantt Nov 30, 2009 08:13 AM

                                  Haven't been in a while, but AOC is upscale and has great food, though my absolute favorite is Barbrix in Silverlake. It's a more casual, less expensive and the food is amazing.

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