What happens when you team up a James Beard semi-finalist and a wine genius? Meet Hayden. Located inside Platform, this too-cool-to-be-true mall in Culver City, Hayden is your new favorite spot for a date or an ‘apéro’. They call it Golden Hour at Hayden, and you’ll rush to finish work early in order to get glasses of funky wine and discounted oysters from both coasts. During the rest of the day, it’s not bad at all either: chef/owner Ari Kolender makes an excellent ancient grain salad, crispy buckwheat waffles (with your choice of whipped ricotta and raspberry jam, or jambon de Bayonne and a soft egg, or a personal favorite: white-miso butter and Windrose Farms plums), as well as the best-selling Japanese breakfast bowl: Koda Farm’s rice, cucumber, shiitake, avocado, a soft egg and either kanpachi tataki, roasted chicken or smoked trout. If you’re in a rush, grab a charred Japanese eggplant sandwich with nori butter, melted leeks on Bub and Grandma’s pillowy focaccia. And don’t ever leave without trying Ari’s banana bread baked in a cast-iron skillet. To wash it all down, ask Anthony Cailan’s (brother of Eggslut’s Alvin Cailan) advice on one of the best wine list in town: a few smart-casual European bottles, and a lot of young and cool Californian natural winemakers. Remember to use Uber/Lyft when dining at Hayden, because you’ll probably be overdrinking. And that’s a good thing.
Where? 8820 Washington Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232
When? Sunday-Thursday 9AM-9PM, Friday-Saturday 9AM-10PM
How? No reservations
Style: Californian / Wine bar
Price: Small plates $3-16, Sandwiches $12-15
Neighborhood: Culver City
Best for: Drinks and dinner