Nothing much has changed under new chef Evan Funke. This is still a filled-to-the-gills spot for folks who don’t mind a conversational rumble ricocheting off hard surfaces. The food’s got farmers’ market written all over it: your beet salads, your pastas with fresh veggies, your roasted skate with braised endive and cannellini beans—all nicely turned out, if not revelatory. The cheese plate offered as an appetizer is more of a dessert, but it may be a good plan if you want a nosh to go with one of the festive prosecco cocktails (the Indochine with lemongrass, perhaps?). The beer and wine lists are well thought-out, and the alcohol-free quaffs are imaginative. The kernel-flecked blueberry corn cake is divine, even though it seems more like a breakfast treat.
Best Beer Sommelier, August 2008
Los Angeles’s main contribution to beer culture is Father’s Office
, the gastropub where Foret Saison de Silly is paired with grilled asparagus like diet cola with a cheeseburger. But our cocktail-prone city has only one true suds sommelier. Self-described “beer chick” Christina Perozzi, who honed her palate at the original Father’s Office in Santa Monica, now rules the craft-beer roost at the Rustic Canyon Wine Bar and Seasonal Kitchen
. Like the dinner menu, her bottle collection rotates monthly, and tableside doting is the norm. One minute she shows why Kulmbacher Eisbock rocks with bloomy rind sheep’s milk cheese; the next, how the rare farmhouse brew Saison D’Erpe Mere draws out the citrus in a snapper ceviche. She even pioneered the beer cocktail with a ginger-lemongrass syrup that diners drizzle into a glass of Girardin Geuze. Welcome to Christina’s office.