Peter Birmingham (you might remember him from Norman's or Pourtal) is one of the more passionate sommeliers around. As desserts arrive, he might show up at the table, twinkle in his eye, and pour a glass of dessert wine to pair with each plate. It's very esoteric and wonderful stuff — a Brachetto d'Acqui from Piedmont, Italy, a marvelous Muscat from Alicante in Spain and a lush Grenache-based Port-like wine from French Catalan country. The wine list, at this point, though, seems left over from the previous restaurant.
While everybody else is running as fast as they can for the food truck, pop-up restaurant or small-plates dive, here's one heroic and hardworking chef who is standing his ground and going for fine dining. I, for one, am cheering for Hatfield's all the way.
6703 Melrose Ave. (at Citrus), Los Angeles; (323) 935-2977; http://www.hatfieldsrestaurant.com
Dinner appetizers, $14 to $21; main courses, $26 to $36; desserts, $7 to $10. Four-course menu (including a vegetarian one), $59 per person. Lunch appetizers, $11 to $12; main courses, $15 to $22. Three-course lunch menu, $29. Corkage fee, $25.
Sunday to Thursday for dinner from 6 to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday 5:30 to 10:30 p.m.; and for lunch Monday to Friday from 11:45 a.m. to 2:15 p.m. Full bar. Valet parking, $6.
Rating is based on food, service and ambience, with price taken into account in relation to quality. Four stars: Outstanding on every level. Three stars: Excellent. Two stars: Very good. One star: Good. No star: Poor to satisfactory.