Fun Lunch places for dining alone in SF and dinner for 2 in Napa
I'm heading to San Francisco with my husband for a business trip and would like some suggestions for good lunch places while dining alone. Will be staying at the Mandarine and probably on foot. Also, we're heading to Napa for a wine tasting on Sunday evening and would like some suggestions for dinner. Thinking about Celadon but open to suggestions. Don't want anything too formal.
Regarding your Napa restaurant:
There are many places around, and most restaurants have already been extensively written about here on Chowhound. I'd use the location of your wine-tasting to guide you -- is it in Napa,
Yountville, St. Helena or which town in Napa Valley? Use that
town as your search term in the Chowhound search window, and
go from there. The info is already here!!
The restaurant in the hotel, has a nice lunch special and they are very nice to people dining alone. I haven't been for a few years though I still hear good things.
Tadich down the street is fun to sit at the bar. It is lively and they have good fish. You could walk down to the Ferry Buidling and try some places there. I like Boulette's Larder a lot.
If you search on Ferry Building and FI-DI (financial district) you will get lots of ideas.
Re: Napa; I was never much of a Celadon fan -- for my money (in order of preference), I'd take Pilar, Redd, Pere Jeanty, or Bouchon.
This is a great question. As a frequent traveler myself, I'm always impressed by places that make a solo diner feel welcome. Too often, the response is snippy and dismissal, as though the lone diner is simply too much trouble.
But enough of the soapbox. I second the recommendation for Tadich (at the bar) for lunch. I think Boulevard may similarly accomodate solo diners, but I'm not sure.
In Yountville (not Napa but worth the drive) is Bistro Jeanty... not to be missed if you like the true Bistro experience. One could be in the French countryside. Excellent food.
I just got back from a weekend of eating in Napa. Bistro Jeanty was disappointing - heavy, uninteresting and several dishes were flat out poorly executed including a rubbery coq au vin. For French bistro food, I prefer Bouchon.
Best meal of the weekend was at Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen in St. Helena (a lovely little town just north of the city of Napa). Casual, delicious, food was interesting but approachable, fair prices.