From the culinary gang that brought us Scopa Italian Roots and Black Market Liquor Bar comes DAMA, a Latin-inspired restaurant that offers a fusion of South American flavors from numerous South American culinary influences. The medley of tastes has so far worked as DAMA is often in conversations pertaining to the best DTLA fusion restaurants and cocktail restaurants.
DAMA is what you get when you pair top chef Antonia Lofaso with restaurant industry veterans Mario Guddemi and Sal Aurora and cocktail connoisseurs Steve Livigni and Pablo Moix. The group has a storied history of launching one successful restaurant concept after another, making a name for themselves throughout Los Angeles, and DAMA seems no different.
From the architecture to the desserts, DAMA has everything to be the premier South American fusion restaurant in the Fashion District. If you’ve never been to DAMA, you’re missing on the following and probably more.
The restaurant itself is a visual treat. One of the Fashion district’s most impressive sights, the former DTLA banana distribution warehouse is now completely converted into a glamourous indoor and outdoor cocktail bar and dining area, complete with banquets and tables on a wide patio. The interior has a wrap-around cocktail bar and a dining room made to impress, which further adds to the old Havana motif. If you’ve been raring for some Cuban art deco ambiance while you’re sipping cocktail, this is the place to be.
DAMA’s approach to Latin American fusion food is definitely deliberate and expertly executed. Chef Lofaso has been to the places where her dishes originated from and managed to express these influences sincerely in her carefully curated work. Here, you can find chorizos and tacos alongside rotisserie chicken, as well as banana sundae are perfect for anyone who loves good food.
Steve Livigni and Pablo Moix have carved a reputation of opening and running the best cocktail bars in Los Angeles and securing for their patrons a selection of rare spirits. Moreover, the duo has created some of the most well-known bar programs in the world and has received nominations for their curation. DAMA’s wine section also shares the same level of expertise, thanks to sommelier Taylor Grant. She is responsible for the restaurant’s vast and varied wine choices that suit the food perfectly. Even the most discerning oenophiles would find something to their liking from a selection that spans every wine-producing country in Europe.