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Apr 10, 2006 12:35 PM

Healdsburg Dining

  • j

My husband and I will be spending 5 days in the area at the end of the month. I'm looking for a few good recommendations that "won't break the bank". Have eaten at Zin and Cena Luna last year and enjoyed both. Am thinking of returning to both and wondering about Santi in Geyserville.

Thanks for any help you can give.

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  1. For a very casual lunch, you may want to consider the Downtown Bakery and Creamery. It's run by some former Chez Panisse folks who (many years ago) decided to open their own place.


    2 Replies
    1. re: Edie

      Downtown was sold a while back by Chez alum, heard it's gone downhill. However, I'll be in Healdsburg this month and plan on checking it out!

      1. re: rabaja

        Downtown looks pretty much the same as ever and I was pleasantly surprised for the most part. We tried a couple cookies and baked goods and they tasty, the fig newton was huge! What I especially liked were the crumpets, they are frozen so you can take them home and reheat them. Well, they are long gone now, but I'm still thinking about them. Once toasted they had a great texture and solid buttery flavor. It seems like a good place to satisfy an afternoon sweet tooth, for a cookie or an ice cream cone, not a great atmosphere for lunch. You could always take a sandwich to the square though.

    2. I like Zin but for special occasion dining you may want to try Cyrus, Dry Creek Kitchen, and/or the Madrona Manor.

      Manzanita and Ravenous are in a similar niche as Zin.

      Oakville Grocery is an alternative to the Downtown Bakery and Cremery for a sandwich.

      Don't forget the Flying Goat for coffee!

      6 Replies
      1. re: Ken

        if you're in downtown Healdsburg, try Bistro Ralph if its still there. Right on the square. It used to be great for lunch or for rainy day comfort food

        1. re: swillbill

          I think it's only open for dinner...

          1. re: swillbill

            I think it's only open for dinner...

            1. re: Paulie

              Personally, I would pass on Bistro Ralph. At one time it was the only show in town but its day has passed... IMO, of course.

              1. re: Tom Hall

                Will you post about your weekend, Tom?

        2. Anyone have any add'l dinner or lunch recommendations that are based on the past few weeks experiences?

          My wife and I will be in Healdsburg the first week in August and need two nights' dinner recommendations, and lunch places as well, so very recent recommendations would be appreciated.

          1 Reply
          1. re: markdeac

            We went for a long weekend in April and had a great time. Our Sat. night dinner was at the Dry Creek Kitchen. It was good, not outstanding. The fois app was great, my fish entree was odddly plated, service was very unsincere, wouldn't rush back. We wanted to got to Cyrus but everyone suggested that might not be wise w/ a fifteen month old.
            Brought food in one night from Oakville, the fava bean salad stands out in my memory, it was very good. The rotisserie chicken was good, it's a nice alternative to full scale restaurant dining.
            Willi's for lunch on the way out of town was interesting. The plates are a little precious, but the food was tasty for the most part. Can't remeber what we had, but I would try it again if I could sit outside in the sunshine.
            What I really wanted to try were the Mexican restaurants off the square. Two come to mind, one across the street from Oakville and one by all the coffee shops. Anyone know if they're good?
            We went to some beautiful wineries as well, and Papa Pietro was a favoriate discovery for all of us. Great reds, nice people.

          2. Jimtown Store just north of the town on 128 is a wonderful spot for a casual and delicious lunch.

            2 Replies
            1. re: skraft

              I agree about Jimtown. And they have lots of fun things to buy.

              I had an oddly bad dinner at my one time at Manzanita. The locals I was with raved about it but remember thinking everything was off, despite being summer and loads of good produce being available.

              1. re: Earl Grey

                Manzanita has a new owner and team in the kitchen, so you might want to consider it again.

            2. I really liked Barndiva for lunch in Healdsburg....very nice patio area. Also, another vote for Willis and Ravenous. Both worth checking out.

              1 Reply
              1. re: hannah

                I was in Healdsburg over the 1st weekend in July and had a great dinner at Barndiva. Three of what they described as "medium plates" (smaller than entrees, bigger than appetizers) was plenty for the two of us - we did share a dessert as well. I especially enjoyed the Crispy Duck Salad (a tad overdressed for my tastes, but didn't stop me from cleaning the plate!). And the garden/patio area is indeed lovely, especially on a warm summer evening.

                For lunch, we just picked up some picnic items from the Healdsburg location of Oakville Grocery and ate at a winery picnic table. Very pleasant.