Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
Jul 7, 2006 07:34 AM

quiet spot for a group in Sonoma County

Following a wedding, we may be acting as wine country tour guides for 12 to 15 family members. I'm trying to think of a Sonoma County restaurant for a group that size with some privacy or quiet so the whole thing isn't a hopeless shouting match. Another problem: it will be a Monday night (in August).

I was thinking of asking about the Farmhouse Inn, but I'm afraid the prices might be too much for some (entrees are about $30). Also I was there quite a while ago, maybe now it's too popular to attempt. But I liked the food and the fact that it was in an old house and broken up into different rooms, which made it quieter.

I'll appreciate your suggestions very much.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Santi in Geyserville is open on Mondays. I've had a group of 12 in the main dining room.

    The Farmhouse Inn is now open on Mondays. As you pointed out, prices are higher there. Worth it though.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Melanie Wong

      If the weather cooperates, the deck at Santi will hold over 12 comfortably. You should have no problem on a Monday night.

      1. re: Melanie Wong

        We used to live in Geyserville and ate at Santi a couple of times. The first time there was superb. The second time there was less a huge disappointment, and an embarassment as we had taken some guests. Many of the staff at Santi used to work at Mange Bene in Healdsburg, which likewise sufferred from schizo quality. If you time it right and the head chef is there, you should probably do well.

        1. re: chilihead2006

          Santi has changed ownership and chefs from the original Thomas and Franco team.

      2. I used to live in Sonoma County...Santa Rosa and Occidental. These were our favorite eating spots..and favorites of others who live there still!

        Gary Chu's in Santa Rosa
        Syrah in Santa Rosa
        Willow Wood Market and Cafe in Graton (my all time favorite). They also own Underwood Bar and Grill across the street which has gotten rave reviews.
        Applewood Inn in Guernville
        Stella's Cafe (yummmm) between Sebastopol and Guernville
        Lucy's Cafe in Sebastopol
        Martha's Old Mexico in Sebastopol (we ate there twice a month...girls night out. nice patio.)

        Love all of these places. The Girl and The Fig in Sonoma is great is John Ash in Santa Rosa..but $$$$.

        1 Reply
        1. re: melly

          Thanks for the reminder for Syrah. I've had a group of 10 there. The staff set up a long table in the atrium. The acoustics aren't great, but we had plenty of room and, most importantly, the food on the tasting menu was very good.

          * * * *

          Heads up to anyone who has changed handles with the software switch, please sign in on Site Talk.

        2. I recently went to a rather newish place in Forestville called Mosaic. We were a group of 10 and there is a small "alcove" that is private. There is also outdoor dining. I thought the food was good- my halibut good but the sides a sweet potato puree and fennel gratin were not seasonal and did not really compliment the fish. The shortribs were good, but in the summer? The appetizers were mixed too. The service was very friendley and I would definitely try it again, if I lived in the area.

          1 Reply
          1. re: zinfanatic

            Thanks for talking about Mosaic, as we haven't heard much about it here. That's kinda what I've been hearing from friends too . . . mixed but good enough to go back. Do you recall the price range?

            Mosaic Restaurant
            (707) 887-7503
            6675 Front St
            Forestville, CA 95436

          2. Thanks for your replies. The Farmhouse Inn said it doesn't take groups larger than 6, and those only at certain times. Someone i asked off-line today suggested Santi also.

            Now chilihead is making me nervous, though.

            2 Replies
            1. re: wearybashful

              It's too bad about Santi. On our last trip, everyone's dish was mediocre or worse, and they were giving short pours in the wine. Mind you, the prices were as high as ever. When I politely complained about the short pour (never did that before, anywhere), the waitress started giving me a dose of attitude...even though we'd known her from her Mangia Bene days for years. For that kind of price you expect nothing less than superlatve food and service. There are too many reliable restaurants around to take a chance on a poorly managed one.

              One of our favorite Sonoma county restaurants is Seafood Brasserie on 3rd St in Santa Rosa. The corned beef hash is takes a bold and creative kitchen to elevate such a dish to haut cuisine, but they succeeded. Everything else we've had there was also very good. Pizza Gourmet in SR is another great spot. We don't do the high-end thing too often as we can usually do better at home.

              1. re: chilihead2006

                We went to K&L Bistro in Sebastopol. It was nice of them to deal with a group, since it was obvious that they can fill the place any night of the week without our help. It was very good: I had salmon which was very delicate, poached or steamed. It got hot in there, though.

            2. I've never been to K&L Bistro....will have to check it out! ;)