If you're one of those Angelenos who takes advantage of our proximity to Tijuana and Mexico's Valle de Guadalupe, you probably know that while the food of the region is amazing, the booze is pretty exciting as well. At Tintorera, the new Silver Lake restaurant from Maycoll Calderón of Mexico City's much-lauded Huset restaurant, there's a focus on seafood and woodfire-cooked meats, but the chef is also taking the booze side of things very seriously.

Calderón — who is a certified sommelier — is curating the wine list himself, with a focus on the wines of the Valle de Guadalupe. “One of our goals at Tintorera is to encourage our guests to try Mexican wine,” he says. “Mexico is now what Napa was 20 or 25 years ago. Valle de Guadalupe is producing some incredible wines, and people are investing in technology now to make them even better. Many people in the United States have no idea they are producing such good wine in Mexico because they haven’t had the opportunity to try it.”

Calderón and his partners hope to change that with a list that spans the globe but includes many Mexican wines — a rarity in Los Angeles.

Great mezcal isn't quite as rare here — restaurants such as Petty Cash and Scopa Italian Roots have fantastic selections — but it's a spirit with endless variety, and Tintorera's focus on mezcal cocktails is a welcome addition. Calderón has brought in accomplished Mexico City barman David Mora to run the restaurant's cocktail program, which is twofold in its aim. Outside, more refreshing cocktails are served that are meant to pair with the food. Indoors, Mora is overseeing a speakeasy-style bar with more experimental craft cocktails.

Let's hope this trend of exciting Mexican drinks (to go with our wealth of exciting Mexican food) continues.

Tintorera, 2815 Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake; tintorera.la.

LA Weekly