Bacaro, dear Bacaro, how do I count the ways I love you? Now people, I’m not usually prone to hyperbole but Bacaro LA Wine Bar is the Ryan Gosling of L.A. restaurants. There, I said it. It’s nice to look at, yes; but visually isn’t as stunning as, let’s say…Johnny Depp. But beneath the unassuming exterior lies so much more….much, much more. A swirling tornado of creativity? A bubbling caldron of passion for the culinary arts? Mountains of the kind of kitchen confidence that only grandmothers wielding 100-year old cast iron skillets possess? Although Ryan Gosling may answer “yes” to the first question, Bacaro gives a thumbs up to all three.
I honestly can’t remember how I stumbled upon Bacaro but perhaps it was via some blog love; I’d heard whispers about this place so my sister and I tried it about two years ago and fell in love. I then took J there and he, too, fell head over heels for their rustic, flavorful and consistently high quality cuisine. Of course I had to take my best friend M next, and she swooned over the burger dripping in bechemel crowned with a perfectly runny egg. After all, who wouldn’t?! Your mouth is watering right now, isn’t it? My parents were equally impressed as we lingered over a mountain of roasted whole garlic cloves piled high on crisp ciabatta and drizzled with an emerald pesto which we washed down with three bottles of wine (hey, there were four of us, ok?).
Every single meal at Bacaro is completely and utterly satisfying in every way. The food is always so well-made: perfectly seasoned, beautifully plated and totally delicious. The service is not only efficient but friendly and fun- we almost always end up in conversation with the waitstaff (Johnny is our favorite waiter and is a master at juggling practically the entire restaurant on his own). The wine selection has something for everyone and the prices are beyond reasonable. I honestly couldn’t ask for anything more in a restaurant.
Now Bacaro isn’t fancy. There aren’t a lot of bells and whistles, you can’t make reservations for a party of less than six and you may have to wait for one of the 12 or so tables they have, but it’s worth it. The food at Bacaro is just good cookin’. It’s clearly made with love and care and by someone who likes to eat. They use fresh, local ingredients- the bread for the Bacaro Burger is from Bicycle Bread Company, founded by two former USC students and it’s deeeelish. Dining at Bacaro is like eating dinner at your best friend’s house if your best friend was a damned good cook. And isn’t that what we want when we go out to eat?
I suppose this post is bordering on gushy, but I truly adore this place and am just happy that it exists. Bacaro makes me excited about eating, inspires me in the kitchen (I’ve made the roasted garlic at home for a pizza) and puts a smile on my face every time I go.
What can I say? I’m in love.