June 24, 2009

Things I Know That Are Not True

1. This is not a blog.

2. Los Angeles is not much of a wine town.

3. I do not have much of a local readership.

I'm not all that sure about #3. I quit looking at my traffic logs a while ago. Something zen-ish, having to do with not why I maintain the Lab. But if #2 is accurate, then it stands to reason that #3 would be true as well.

If I did have a significant local readership, I know this would be true: I definitely would not write restaurant reviews. In part because this is a serious pseudo-scientific research institute and we don't have time for that sort of thing. But mostly because I don't want to wait behind any of you for a table.

Nevertheless, I feel compelled to follow up on my interview with Lou Amdur of Lou that we collaborated on for saignee's 31 days of natural wine. According to the long established etiquette of gift exchange, I feel kind words are due, especially since Lou did most of the work.

Lou is on Vine, just north of Melrose in mid-town Los Angeles, just up the street from Paramount Studios. The restaurant has the corner spot in a multi-function, L-shaped strip mall.

Lou has the most interesting and eclectic wine list in Los Angeles. Every time I stop in, I learn something I didn't know before. He is passionate about wine and goes to great lengths to find interesting, characterful (his word) things to pour. If you're looking for a great educational resource, take a photo of the menu with a spy camera, develop the microfilm and then google every wine on the list. It's a journey through biodynamics, old and ungrafted vines (yes!), dry-farming and wild yeast ferments.

Oh, the food at Lou is fantastic too.

Los Angeles has altogether too few, great neighborhood bistros. We drive around too much chasing trends here. But Lou is a special exception.

So please, don't tell anyone about it.

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