Without a doubt, LA has become a bit of a mecca for foodies in recent years, and restaurants like Sotto and Alma contribute to that distinction. Both restaurants represent two of the best meals I’ve ever experienced anywhere. Part of the foodie adventure was not just due to the decor, vibe and eats, but also to the accompanying wine. Both restaurants- in very different locations- offer menu selections great for tasting and sharing. As such, we shared 8-10 courses, including dessert(s). The young chefs at both these restaurants are inspired by fresh, seasonal market ingredients, and aren’t afraid to think outside the culinary box and taking risks that pay off. They present an eye-catching aesthetic and wonderfully complex textures. Sotto showcases Southern Italian dishes with a twist, and Alma features highly curated California cuisine.
It is at Sotto that I discovered and experienced Donkey and Goat wine, natural wine from a wine producing couple based in Berkeley, CA. The clean, clear Chardonnay with impressive acidity and subtle alcohol and fruit was the perfect compliment to all the textures, flavors and varying dishes we had that night. When we even more recently ate at Alma, I ordered an unfamiliar Prosecco that as soon as I tasted, I knew was in the au natural family of wines. I turned the bottle around and noticed that none other than Joe Dressner was the importer. The follow up red wine was a fantastic Cab Franc from a somewhat familiar producer imported by Jenny and Francois. I instantly knew they had assembled an all organic and biodynamic wine list working with the best wine importers in the business.
It’s no coincidence that these up and coming, cutting edge restaurants are working with organic and biodynamic wines and the importer/distributors that have the best selection of the genre.