Now Open: Augustine Wine Bar in Sherman Oaks

Who: Dustin Lancaster and Matthew Kaner, who own the very popular and well-respected Bar Covell in Los Feliz, teamed up with longtime friend and Sherman Oaks resident (and musician/producer) Dave Gibbs to bring Augustine, a sophisticated, vintage-style wine bar to Sherman Oaks.  L to R: Dave Gibbs, Dustin Lancaster and Matthew Kaner at Augustine during construction. Photo: Augustine/Facebook The Building: Dating back to […]

Who: Dustin Lancaster and Matthew Kaner, who own the very popular and well-respected Bar Covell in Los Feliz, teamed up with longtime friend and Sherman Oaks resident (and musician/producer) Dave Gibbs to bring Augustine, a sophisticated, vintage-style wine bar to Sherman Oaks. 

L to R: Dave Gibbs, Dustin Lancaster and Matthew Kaner at Augustine during construction. Photo: Augustine/Facebook

The Building: Dating back to 1941, the space looks like it could be a bar in Europe—or plucked from another place and time. Originally the building was built to be a radio repair shop but later spent time as a couple of restaurants, including the former Brats Brothers. The bar is decorated with a collection of antique radios, vintage publications, industrial lighting, kitschy signs and a stand-up, wood piano circa 1912. Much of the memorabilia is Gibbs', including photos, magazines and wine books. The centerpiece of Augustine is a 35-foot, reclaimed, white Carrera marble-top bar with 18 seats. Along the wall there is a small row of two-person booths, while to the left of the door there is an "L-shaped" sofa, chairs and antique table.

The Wine: Augustine offers 75 wines by the glass ranging in price from $10 to $100 and bottles ranging from $100 to $1,000. Oenophiles and novice wine drinkers alike will be at home here. Gibbs, an avid wine collector, will showcase wines from his personal collection dating back to the 1800s, as well as some rare vintages from World War I and World War II. Looking for an 1874 Chateau Lafite, a 1934 Chateau Margaux or a 1974 Heitz "Martha's Vineyard" Napa? You'll find it here.

The Beer: Rare beers are highlighted on the menu, with six on tap that will change monthly. There are also a variety of bottles that will include some very rare finds (and nowhere else in the 818 that's for sure), including Trappist Westvleteren and Brasserie Cantillon Grand Cru Bruocsella.

The Food: Chef Evan Algorri, who comes with NY kitchen cred including Marea and Union Square Café, is manning the kitchen. The opening menu features wine-pairing dishes such as a beef cheek sandwich, braised octopus, root vegetable Caesar salad, cheese, charcuterie and spiced nuts. Sweets include a blondie and a coconut pie ($6 to $25).

Augustine, 13456 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks. Open daily at 5 p.m. with last call at midnight.

(For more background from a previous column in The Sauce, click here.)

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