St. Helena--Friday night dinner
- Ms. Verde Aug 5, 2007 04:39 PM
I will be in St. Helena for a week starting August 6th. I have checked the board and , but didn't find as much as I expected, especially recent reports. I have been to St. Helena several times over the last 5 summers, taking classes at CIA at Greystone. I tried many of the big name places: Martini House, Cindy's Backstreet, Vigne Tre (?) Taylor's Refresher, Pinot Blanc, Greystone and also Bistro Jeanty, Bouchon in Younteville, and Julia's Kitchen in Napa. . I read about Terra. Is that where I should try for on Friday night? I have dinner reservations at Martini House Monday night--that was my favorite last time.
Over a week ago I had a fabulous dinner at Meadowood's Restaurant, the chef's tasting menu. Terra is always good, or at least it has been for me. Not all dishes are always mind-blowing but it is a nice place for a cozy dinner.
One of my consistently favorite restaurants is Rutherford Grill. You have to order the cornbread- fresh, sweet, moist and made with just a tad of fresh jalepeno for a perfect but faint little kick. Also the pork ribs literally fall of the bone. They have a near perfect Caesar salad, great wine list, excellent service.
I highly recommend Cook (contemp italian/cali), Market (american with a twist), CC Blue (sushi), and Armadillo's (fine mexican) because they are all smaller, less touristy and the food is outstanding.
Pinot Blanc is now gone and has been replaced with Go Fish - owned and operated by Cindy Pawclyn of Cindy's Backstreet and Mustards fame. Highly recommended if you are a fish fan.
Also new is Press - an upscale steakhouse that I think is over-priced and rather pretentious.
I have never been a Tra Vigne fan (okay, I liked it a dozen years ago but it is a shadow of its former self). Terra would be a great choice if you are working through your St. Helena list. Fyoulady's suggestions are all good but only that - just good for locals but I think hardly memorable.
My friend, a wine broker foodie who lives in St Helena, loves Press and Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen.
Nothing is better than Terra in Napa Valley, except perhaps FL. Do Terra, but Martini House is a close second. Don't think Meadowood is ready for prime time yet, Rutherford Grill and Cook may be too casual for what you'd like -- if you'd like a more casual place, I also recommend Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen. I don't recommend her other resto: Go Fish (the menu is unwieldy and the food is all over the place). Press is great for certain things -- beef, etc. Tra Vigne has been off its game for years. The best is Terra.