Copa D’Oro

Its proximity to the Santa Monica Farmers’ Market explains the “produce section” thing going on behind the bar. Head bartender Vincenzo Marianella comes by way of Providence, where he single-handedly wrestled L.A.’s flavored-martini craze to the ground with his fresh, classically inspired cocktails. At Copa d’Oro he takes mixology beyond gimmicks, with the argument that a good cocktail doesn’t have to be retro. The space is airier than most, thanks to high-beamed ceilings and a blond-wood bar. The cocktail list changes seasonally and includes such obscure ingredients as Cynar and rhubarb bitters. Or you can choose your own combination of fruit, veggie, and spirit—like at Jamba Juice but with booze. Time warp: So very now. Ultimate swill: The Santa Monica gimlet with Martin Miller’s gin, cucumber, celery, and lime juice. Secret ingredient: Fresh-from-the-farm goods.