Local origins can make anything that much sweeter, from your neighborhood taco truck, to just about anything else except the Clippers. Stocking wines from your gigantic, sock-shaped backyard: Corkbar.
Cork's pouring 40+ varieties of California-only vinos in a patio-aided setting whose wood-heavy one-room interior almost looks like a giant cask: light white oak semi-circular bar and ladder-accessed, 23ft-high tiered-wood shelving, with bottles Jenga-tasticly stacked both horizontal and vertical. State-wide coverage comes by the glass or bottle, with selections like Santa Barbara's smoky Babcock Syrah, Santa Ynez's fruity Melville Viognier, and Napa's Frog's Leap Sauvignon Blanc, described as having "aromas of lemongrass, citrus blossoms, and wet stone" -- which smells just like fragrant dry stone, enhanced by the intoxicating scent of water. To soak up the local grapes, an eclectic menu runs from small plates (fontina, cheddar, and asiago mac & cheese), to sandwiches (ribeye w/ piquillo peppers on ciabatta), to entrees (striped seabass w/ chorizo), all lovingly created without the aid of a freezer or microwave, guaranteeing ultimate freshness, and the unfortunate absence of delicious rogue Hot Pocket splatter.
Cork's also got a slew of California beers in bottles and on tap (Petaluma's Lagunitas Pilsner, Humboldt's Steelhead Extra Pale...), and'll have a five-sample tasting flight every month, with pours spread out geographically among both California and exotic locales like New Zealand, France, and Oregon -- 'cause while local pride's great, nothing's sweeter than proclaiming the Oregon one's the worst.
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