We have all become familiar with the idea of the Italianate wine bar in the past year or so, intimate, themed places with a few dozen inexpensive wines, nibbles of meat and cheese, and a cheery, relaxed vibe. Bin 8945, which just opened in the raging heart of Boystown, is the other kind of wine bar, a showcase for wine more than a center of conviviality, with a serious Asian/Caribbean menu and a wine list that is expensive but dotted with values for those few of you willing to pop $120 or more for a bottle of rare or antique wine to go with your fried green tomatoes. Chef Matt Carpenter has a Bahamian background, and there are twists in the cooking you might not expect from a restaurant where the food is supposed to be incidental to the wine: grilled steak with duck-fat fries, spicy Barbados-style catfish, a rather too-elegant take on jerk chicken, and what must be L.A.’s only example of duff, a steamed Bahamian cake studded with raisins, that Carpenter has his grandmother send in from the islands. Bin 8945, 8945 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, (310) 550-8945. Open nightly, 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.
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