The tables at Bottle Rock are the size of phonograph records, and the wobbly metal stools seem perpetually on the verge of collapse. The location, tucked behind a parking structure, is obscure, even if it is just a step or two from Culver City’s new restaurant row. The opening chef, Jason Travi — who cooked at La Terza, Campanile and Opaline, among other places — has already left, probably to work on the restaurant he is opening soon right around the corner. But Bottle Rock, which doubles as a shop, is among the most appealing of the wine bars that have opened on the Westside over the past year — because of the house-made pâtés, because of the tomato bread and the pressed sandwiches, because of the cheese board, but mostly because of the wine, which tends to be obscure, well chosen and reasonably priced. The proprietors will open any bottle in the shop, from simple California wines to aged Barolos, if you commit to two glasses of the stuff, and the chalkboard list of available wines can change 20 times a night. The little grilled chorizos are delicious. And there is always something good to drink for $5 a glass. After a screening at Sony or a show at one of the local theaters, Bottle Rock is the perfect place to kick it. 3847 Main St., Culver City, (310) 836-WINE.

—Jonathan Gold

LA Weekly