Owner Claudio Blotta and wife Adria teamed with New York-bred chef Don Dickman (formerly of Rocca) to create this homey restaurant and wine bar and were rewarded with a nod from Los Angeles Magazine as one of LA’s ’10 Best New Restaurants’. The cheery former residence with exposed beams and bright walls invites you to forget your day and pull up a seat. The square wine bar encourages, if not requires, conversation with neighbours and the open kitchen overlooking the small dining room creates a noisy but intimate ‘we’re all in this together’ feeling. The wine is refreshingly affordable, most glasses are under $10 and all have been chosen carefully for Don Dickman’s robust Mediterranean small plates menu (as has the creative beer list). Dickman takes a classic approach to his food; he prefers to let the fresh ingredients speak for themselves. The vegetable small plate offerings are unusually plentiful and creative – try the roasted charmoula spiced cauliflower or grilled polenta with mushrooms – and the cheese/charcuterie selections are unrivaled in Silverlake. Pork belly is a favorite here, too, but the menu changes with the seasons and market availability so you may have to come back twice to catch it. Call ahead for a table as Barbrix has devoted regulars and a busy after-work crowd taking the edge off the day.