There's never a quiet night at this Los Feliz wine bar, where each of the 150 wines by the glass comes with a story to tell. Whatever you're in the mood for, an expertly trained member of the staff will make unique wine recommendations based on a few simple questions about your preferences and maybe an adjective or two (think: "fruity," "clean," "funky"). Then, your drink-slinger is off, pouring samples and drawing in the most serious of customers until they crack a smile and get something that’s just to their liking. Ask for a seat at Bar 1 for prime people watching, and discover a new wine from the ever-changing menu as you munch on standard fare like cheese and charcuterie.
In our eyes, a truly great L.A. wine bar has to have three out of four of these things: A thoughtfully curated bottle list, delicious food to go along with it and a stylishly low-key ambience that pointedly doesn’t turn into an absolute madhouse on the weekends. (We’re looking at you, Voodoo Vin and El Prado.) Part of the appeal of wine bars is the ability to strike up a conversation with a knowledgeable bartender, so our list excludes fairly crowded wine bars that are better known as places to see and be seen rather than destinations for those who appreciate (or perhaps want to learn more about) wine.
Though the atmosphere at these spots run the gamut from relaxed to slightly pretentious, the complex varietals you’ll sip on will more than make up for whatever’s missing. Whenever you’re not in the mood for yet another upscale cocktail den or a rowdy brewery, these amazing wine bars will be more than happy to pour you a glass.
RECOMMENDED: Where to go wine tasting in Los Angeles