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Bestia wine list?

jdwdeville Jan 12, 2013 04:35 PM

Going to Bestia tonight- has anyone seen their wine list? Do I anything to get excited about on there or it one of those new style lists where beers are more prominent and there's only 10-20 selections?

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  1. r
    RicRios RE: jdwdeville Jan 12, 2013 04:59 PM

    This is what JGold has to say in today's LATimes re. Bestia's wine program.
    (Which probably means it should be taken, as anything coming from JG, 'cum grano salis'):

    "The wine program is run by Maxwell Leer, who was the sommelier at Bazaar (not a Chait restaurant), and although you won't be able to pronounce many of his wines — my tongue collapsed in defeat when I tried to order Dingaè, a pleasantly funky wine from the Dalmatian Coast — you will probably be happy with the oddball natural wines on his list, including something called Cotar from Slovenia, which has exactly the acidity of Greek yogurt but goes remarkably well with Menashe's meaty food."


    2 Replies
    1. re: RicRios
      jdwdeville RE: RicRios Jan 12, 2013 05:20 PM

      That answers my question perfectly- I know Maxwell and his tastes, and it means there will certainly be something interesting to drink!

      1. re: RicRios
        ipsedixit RE: RicRios Jan 12, 2013 07:08 PM

        (Which probably means it should be taken, as anything coming from JG, 'cum grano salis')


        Well said. Well said, indeed.

      2. j
        jdwdeville RE: jdwdeville Jan 13, 2013 12:43 AM

        Back from Bestia just now- best described as holycrapholycrapholycrap amazing. review to follow.

        12 Replies
        1. re: jdwdeville
          carter RE: jdwdeville Jan 13, 2013 07:34 PM

          In addition to discussing the food & ambiance, do discuss the wine list if you would, given Ric's request which would also be of interest to me.

          1. re: jdwdeville
            revets2 RE: jdwdeville Jan 14, 2013 12:34 PM

            i'll second carter's request. last we ate there during Test Kitchen days, the wine list was oaky and weak and corkage was $20+.

            1. re: revets2
              jdwdeville RE: revets2 Jan 14, 2013 01:33 PM

              Corkage is $20, which I find totally acceptable.
              The list is now overseen by Maxwell Leer, as noted above in the JG article. Maxwell was also responsible for Tasting Kitchen's exceptional opening list (and I believe he was at the SLS for a time). It was a single page on Saturday, but is apparently set to double.
              The list has an Italian bent, as it should, but it's strengths are not in the traditional Italian suspects. This is not the list for you if you're looking for pages of Brunello and Barolo choices. It is heavy on indigenous grapes and oddball winemaking techniques, think Radikon and his peers, and wines from Croatia, Hungary, and Slovenia... very cuisine-appropriate.

              1. re: jdwdeville
                RicRios RE: jdwdeville Jan 14, 2013 05:27 PM

                Was Cornelissen on the list?

                1. re: RicRios
                  jdwdeville RE: RicRios Jan 14, 2013 05:46 PM

                  I honestly don't remember if there was an Etna on there...

                2. re: jdwdeville
                  archer RE: jdwdeville Jan 14, 2013 10:32 PM

                  How is the red selection for lower priced wines? And do they have good choices in the $35-$40 range?

                  1. re: archer
                    jdwdeville RE: archer Jan 15, 2013 09:01 AM

                    Actually I found quite a value selection on the list, and one of the bottles we had was of exceptional quality at around $50. You have a harder time overspending on wine- though who knows what'll happen when they expend the list. I honestly would have jumped at the chance to spend a bit more on a well-aged cru Barolo or Barbaresco...

                  2. re: jdwdeville
                    revets2 RE: jdwdeville Jan 18, 2013 11:45 AM

                    $20 cork is absolutely acceptable with a solid list. During the Test Kitchen period, it was $20 cork and a weak list. Not acceptable. But standard for all the Test Kitchen dinners we've attended.

                    Looking forward to checking at the new list.

                  3. re: revets2
                    kevin RE: revets2 Jan 14, 2013 06:59 PM

                    Do they make substitutions or modifications here ? Or is it one of those that don't ?

                    1. re: kevin
                      RicRios RE: kevin Jan 14, 2013 07:32 PM

                      "We kindly decline modifications and substitutions."


                      1. re: RicRios
                        kevin RE: RicRios Jan 14, 2013 07:33 PM

                        Darnit. Ok, thanks.

                      2. re: kevin
                        jdwdeville RE: kevin Jan 15, 2013 08:58 AM

                        Yeah, I guess I would -maybe- have an issue with that if the dishes here weren't composed with such a thrift of ingredients. However, most everything we tried had maybe 4ish components, tops. So, someone bent on making substitutions would be going in saying "I'll have the pan-seared octopus, hold the octopus. Maybe you could use shrimp for me".
                        That just doesn't work.

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