Where and What to Sip in Los Angeles Tonight: Four Wine Bars To Know

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Photo: Courtesy of Barbrix

Happy Saturday, oenophiles. It’s spring time–no other reason is needed to start the evening off with a well-picked glass of wine. Whether you’re in New York, San Francisco, or Los Angeles, we’ve got expert selections at hand. Enjoy the sommelier picked selections and the stellar ambiance at these wine bars and toast the weekend.

A.O.C. Wine Bar and Restaurant
8700 West 3rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90048

Photo: Aaron Cook|AACK Studio

Photo: Aaron Cook|AACK Studio

Owner and Wine Director Caroline’s Styne’s spring wine selections from A.O.C include:

2014 Cassanova della Spinetta, Rosato “This rosé is a blend of 50% Sangiovese and 50% Prugniolo Gentile, made by one of my all-time favorite winemakers, Giorgio Rivetti,” Styne says. “The wine is a pale salmon color (perfect for Spring!) (ed note: we’ll come back to this!) and is clean, bright and fresh with delicate melon notes and vibrant acidity. It makes the perfect accompaniment to dishes made with the season’s early produce and can hold it’s own through a light outdoor lunch or more serious dinner.”

2012 Patrick Baudoin, Anjou, “Effusion” “This Chenin Blanc from the Loire Valley is the epitome of elegance and really speaks of the clean, freshness of Spring. It is bright and lean with hints on the nose and palate of apples and pears and delicate hazelnut. It is at once forceful and elegant showing soft fruit notes alongside a vibrant and racy acidity,” Styne says.

2012 Soliste, Pinot Noir, L’Esperance, Sonoma Coast  “This is an absolutely gorgeous Pinot Noir, from Claude Koeberle of Soliste. This is my kind of Pinot, lean and elegant with pretty pure red cherry and pomegranate fruit notes on the nose and palate, a striking mineral component, silky texture and balancing acidity,” Styne notes. “It is the perfect embodiment of the season.”

2442 Hyperion Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027

Photo: Courtesy of Barbrix

Photo: Courtesy of Barbrix

Photo: Courtesy of Barbrix

Barbrix sommelier Claudio shares his seasonal selections:

Reisling “Stein. Terassen,” Salomon 2012 Austria  “Spring means my favorite, fava beans, are around and fava & reisling is just a terrific combination. This wine pairs so nicely with the produce this time of year brings” he says.

Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, La Quercia ’13 Italy  “This medium to full fruit wine pairs great with spring lamb and meats, and complements grilled items too,” Claudio notes.

7274 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90046

Photo: Courtesy of smoke.oil.salt
Photo: Courtesy of smoke.oil.salt

Stephen Gelber, the Owner and wine director of smoke.oil.salt. suggests these two wines for the warmer seasons:

Ameztoi Rubentis Txakolina “I love the Txakolis from the basque region all year-round, but especially the rosés for summer. The Ameztoi Rubentis, from the Getaria region in Basque, is very fresh and lively, with notes of strawberry and melon. It finishes with just a touch of salinity, and is a great food wine,” Gelber notes. “We pour this at smoke.oil.salt. out of a porrone from height, which activates a slight frizzante, and also serve it by the glass. It’s a fun wine.”

Bodegas Bernabé Navarro Tinaja de la Mata “This is an organic white wine, a blend of Merseguera and Moscatel, fermented in amphora without sulfites, rendering it ‘orange,’” Gelber explains. “The result is a wine with bracing acidity, and oxidative tones that give it a structure solid enough to match seafoods or meats. Navarro is a very creative winemaker producing very cool artisanal wines in Alicante. We serve this one by the bottle and by the glass at SOS.”

Rustic Canyon Wine Bar and Seasonal Kitchen
1119 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401

Rustic Canyon - Interior 4 - Emily Hart RothPhoto: Emily Hart Roth

Rustic Canyon Bar - Photo Credit Emily Hart Roth
Photo: Emily Hart Roth

Rustic Canyon’s Wine Director and General Manager Steve Infield shares his picks:

2014 Robert Sinskey Rose Vin Gris Los Carneros “This is a very vibrant rosé with a lot of bright, red fruit quality like strawberry and watermelon that pairs great with the seasonal produce available,” Infield says. “It will also be one of the best wines to drink all through the summer!”

2013 Leitz Dry Riesling, Rheingau, Germany “A great Riesling for those who don’t want sweetness or something too tart,” Infield notes. “Just the right amount of acidity makes it a great wine to drink on its own as the weather gets warmer, or even as a nice white with barbecue.”