A wine bar, at its best, is buoyed by the quality of its conversation as much as its wine selection. That's part of what we love about Bar Covell, the Los Feliz wine bar run by Dustin Lancaster and Matthew Kaner. There's no menu — when you belly up, the bartender will gauge your tastes and mood and drinking proclivities, and suggest a few wines you might enjoy. This sets the tone for Covell in general, a place where you might strike up a conversation with your neighbors, or be invited to partake in someone else's bottle and banter. The selection is always appropriate for wine nerds and casual drinkers alike. There is also the small fact of Los Angeles' dearth of proper wine bars — a niche Covell pretty much has locked down. We hope it gets more competition in the coming years, but it will almost certainly still be the best. —Besha Rodell
4628 Hollywood Blvd., Los Feliz, 90027. (323) 660-4400, barcovell.com.