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Wine & Spirits

Veni, vidi, vici, vino

Coffeehouses? They're so last year. Now wine bars are conquering the city.

January 18, 2006|Leslie Brenner | Times Staff Writer

Bodega de Cordova. A charming spot that could be in a tiny village in Spain, with a six-item menu including jamon serrano and piquillo peppers, both on crostini. 361 S. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, (323) 951-1969. Wine and beer. Cash only.

Crepe Vine. This polished French spot has comfy banquettes and a handsome tin ceiling. Keep your food order simple: Skip the coq au vin in favor of moules frites, one of the simpler crepes or a croque monsieur. 36 W. Colorado Blvd., Suite 1 and 2, Pasadena, (626) 796-7250. Wine and beer.

Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar. The national chain, which started in Newport Beach, has come to the San Fernando Valley. You can order from the regular menu of prime steaks, chops and seafood at the wine bar. 6373 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Woodland Hills, (818) 346-1005. Full bar.

La Maschera Ristorante. One side of this good-natured Old Town spot is a wine lounge, with assaggi (bar appetizers) such as mixed bruschetta, rotoli di melanzane (eggplant rolls) and marinated shrimp. 82 N. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena, (626) 304-0004. Wine and beer.

Madeleine's Restaurant & Wine Bistro. Small plates such as olives and almonds or a charcuterie and cheese plate are served at the wine bistro or ask for the full menu. 1030 E. Green St., Pasadena, (626) 440-7087. Full bar.

Next Door Tapas Lounge. Stylish and friendly, the lounge has a central fireplace and sleek banquettes. The tapas menu is evolving. Loungers didn't seem to get brandade-stuffed piquillo peppers or ajoblanco and infused red wine shaved ice; Redondo Iglesias 18-month-aged serrano ham and Idiazabal cheese seem to go over better. Too bad, because the chef has a flair. 11814 Ventura Blvd., Studio City (818) 985-9222. Full bar.

Sopra Spuntini & Bar. This sparkling, second-story room is a great place to relax with a glass of wine and sample spuntini, Italian small plates. 8840 Beverly Blvd., West Hollywood, (310) 492-0880. Full bar.

Vinoteca Farfalla. From the owners of nearby Farfalla Trattoria, this wine bar has a great vibe and an odd, Brazilian-accented menu. (The Vinoteca shares a kitchen with Tropicalia Brazilian grill next door.) 1978 Hillhurst Ave., Los Angeles, (323) 661-7365. Full bar.

Zinc Bar. In Shade, a new boutique hotel, Zinc is more party bar than wine bar. In good weather, expect long waits. 1221 N. Valley Drive, Manhattan Beach, (310) 546-4995. Full bar.

Selected others

A.O.C., 8022 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles, (323) 653-6359.

Bodega Wine Bar, 260 E. Colorado Blvd., Suite 208, Pasadena, (626) 793-4300.

Cobra Lily, 8442 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, (323) 651-5051.

Enoteca Drago, 410 N. Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, (310) 786-8236.

Monsieur Marcel, 6333 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles, (323) 939-7792.

Primitivo Wine Bistro, 1025 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, (310) 396-5353.

XO Wine Bistro, 1209 Highland Ave., Manhattan Beach, (310) 545-3509.

-- Leslie Brenner

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