photo by Bradley Tuck
At 71Above, you’d be forgiven for looking up from your meal. On the 71st floor of the US Bank Tower, you’re privy to a nearly 360-degree view of LA, from downtown landmarks to the San Gabriel Mountains. The interior (if you care) is sleek and modern, the restaurant’s wines illuminated in see-through columns, like museum displays filled with liquid treasures. Chef Vartan Abgaryan’s prix-fixe menu slants toward the eastern Mediterranean, with dishes like grilled octopus dusted with sumac and Aleppo pepper, or roasted striped bass with harissa, raisins, pine nuts and preserved lemon. CatherineMorel surmounts the site’s logistical and storage hurdles to present a list with impressive breadth, strong in pinot noir and chardonnay from both the US and Burgundy, as well as rieslings, like Ostertag’s Muenchberg 2005, and rare domestic reds like Pax Mahle’s 2007 Agharta Red Label Syrah.