Nestled inside the Bonaventure Hotel, experienced masseuses maintain 10,000 square feet of pure serenity spread across 11 treatment rooms. Cordoned off into sections for men and women, the facility flaunts amenities such as hydro-jet showers with seven pulsing showerheads and saunas fogged with soothing vapor instead of fog machines stolen from middle-school dances. Bonaventure Club plucks massage techniques from all over the globe, including Thailand where therapists stretch frames with their hands, knees, and feet to amplify the client's flexibility and energy. Pre- or post-treament, clients can unwind in a relaxation lounge stocked with Perrier water, jasmine-rose tea, and snacks, while flipping through magazines or watching a big-screen TV.
Behind its brick storefront, The Crush Bistro & Wine Bar presents visitors with the opportunity to sample wine from around the world. Pendant lights throw their glow across a towering case filled with stacks of wine and miniature ships waiting to dock in an empty bottle. However, rather than having bartenders manage the sizable stock, 16 self-serve dispensers pour tastes and glasses of reds and whites, letting visitors sample several options to pair with the tapas menu. Small plates create landing sites for smoked Norwegian-salmon crostini and beef-short-rib sandwiches, and the bistro's chefs also cook veggie options such as Asian-style summer rolls that wrap marinated tofu with lettuce and cabbage.
Sepulveda Wine Co. opens its tasting bar to sommeliers and soda fans alike, with a weekly changing menu of wines available for sniffing, swirling, swishing, and swallowing. During a wine tasting, guests can sample five wines from the daily selection of 12 quality wines, featuring four white wines and eight red wines. Past potables have included Sanctuary 2006 Bien Nacido pinot noir—whose dry, balanced characteristics slosh past uvulae with flavors of currant, plum, and pomegranate—and the Round Pond 2009 sauvignon blanc, which complements its tangy lemon-lime taste with harmonious notes of herbs, honeysuckle, and Vivaldi’s Concerto No. 3 in F Major: L’Autunno, also known as the theme song of Jersey Shore.
Inside the Torrance Marriott, chefs toss together farm-fresh ingredients to create flatbreads, sandwiches, and well-balanced entrees that complement a wine list of more than 40 different vintages. A two-story water feature gives meals a soothing backdrop for thoughtful conversations or raucous celebrations in anticipation for a new quarterly budget report. Outside, flickering flames from the fire pit cast a glow on the zen garden's orange-cushioned lounge chairs beneath the clear Southern California sky.
Gonpachi fashions its menu of authentic Japanese fare and Edomae (Tokyo-style) sushi from locally sourced ingredients, as well as authentic foodstuffs purchased from Tokyo's Tsukiji Market. Gonpachi hand-pounds its soba noodles daily from buckwheat flour threshed and milled on the premises. These freshly noodled noodles can then be served chilled with a dipping sauce as seiro ($8) or in a hot broth as kake soba ($8–$9). Gonpachi in Beverly Hills also practices the slow-cooking robata-style, preparing delicacies such as Chilean sea bass ($6) and bacon-wrapped cherry tomatoes ($3) over the gentle firelight of a traditional oak-charcoal pyramid. On the other end of the cooked spectrum, sushi fans can trap spicy tuna rolls ($5) between the bamboo chopsticks in their hands or the insect pincers on their faces. Chopsticks also protect hands from the flavor explosion of the dynamite roll ($16).
The dudes behind The Dudes' Brewing Company share a mutual love for?believe it or not?craft beer. For brewmaster Jeff Parker, the obsession started in an unlikely place: high-school chemistry. Drawn to the science-y processes of beer production, Parker eventually began experimenting with home brews in the late '80s and beyond before getting on board with The Dudes. Together, the team has crafted a lineup of beers to impress any discerning drinker, whether they prefer a hop-forward double IPA or a smooth, malted porter with notes of toasted coconut. Visitors can check out the brewery before heading to the tasting room, where they'll find a host of beers on tap, which frequently include one-offs, specials, and beer not intended for keg stands.