Petra’s Bistro and Wine Bar (6080 Minaret Rd., 760/934-3500, dinner Tues.–Sun.) brings a bit of the California wine country all the way out to Mammoth Lakes . This eatery offers a seasonally changing menu that’s designed to please the palate and complement the wine list. That wine list is worth a visit itself—an eclectic mix of vintages highlights the best of California, while giving a nod to European and South American wines.
Wine-lovers will recognize many names, but still might find something new on the unusual list. The by-the-glass offerings change each night, and your server will happily cork your half-finished bottle to take home for tomorrow.
Two dining rooms and a wine bar divide up the seating nicely, and the atmosphere succeeds in feeling romantic without being cave-dark. Petra’s stays open all year, so if you’re visiting in the off-season you’ll get a pleasantly uncrowded treat. Reservations are a good idea during high season.
A popular gourmet establishment, Skadi (587 Old Mammoth Rd., Ste. B, 760/934-3902, http://restaurantskadi.com ) describes their menu as containing “alpine cuisine.” In truth, this chef-owned restaurant boasts a menu filled with California-style innovation using mountain-inspired ingredients to their best advantage. (You’ll see a lot of venison!) Everything on the list looks tasty, but if you’re not ready for a heavy entrée, consider ordering a couple of items from the long list of appetizers for a “small plates” experience.
Oh, and don’t skip dessert! Whatever you choose, the European-heavy wine list will have something perfect to pair with it. If you’re in town in the ski season, make reservations in advance, especially on weekends.