Redd or Martini House? Or other places for December?
I've been scurrying over various posts to try to decide where to go for my trip out to the Bay Area in December. Plan on going wine tasting mainly in St. Helena; but we will be staying in Napa at the Marriott (near Hwy 29 and Union) because it is cheap! We would rather spend the money on wine (will be bringing it home; brought back 24 bottles last time! Massachusetts has extremely limited shipping from wineries) and a good meal.
So after a day of tasting, we would like to go some place decent to eat; I've been leaning towards Redd or Martini House; they seem to get mixed reviews; other suggestions are welcomed. I think I might be more partial to Redd because of their menu and pricing; but is it as noisy as some posts make it out to be? Anyway, I'll be dining on a Monday night (Dec 29, 2008) so all suggestions are welcomed! Thanks!
We were in the valley last week and had a wonderful dinner at Ad Hoc. It was "the" Monday night so fried chicken was being served and it was outstanding. In fact, Thomas Keller was there that night. Dinner is served family style, bowl of salad, platter of chicken, a great cheese plate and then dessert, all for $45/person, a real bargain we felt. Ad Hoc, in case you don't know, is in Yountville.
Although the recommandation for Ad Hoc is good, I would suggest Ubuntu for a few reasons. First, it's amazingly good, second, it's in Napa so little driving around is involved and third the wine list is cheaper than at Ad Hoc (the Abraxas we paid $73 at Ad Hoc one night was sold for $60 at Ubuntu the day after). Ad Hoc is good, no doubt about it, but the wine list is pretty expensive.
Ubuntu is a totally different experience that I'd be hard pressed to find anywhere else. I was litterraly blown away as I think it was the best meal of my life. The restaurant only serves vegetables in such a creative way thatr every dish comes unexpected and every bite is an explosion of flavours. I spoke with chef Jeremy Fox and he told me he was sorking on a book that would come out hopefully in about 2 years. Keeping my fingers crossed until then and I'm already dreaming to head back to No Cal just to eat at Ubuntu.
I just ate at Redd twice in the past month and I would go there again. My only caveat is that I would not get the tasting menu, I much preferred eating off the regular menu. The first time we went with the in-laws and they loved it. We ate in the main dining room and while the lighting is a bit strange it didn't seem too noisy to us.
I'd suggest Redd which we've been to multiple times and usually come away pretty happy. We've only managed to make it to Martini House once so far, and we had two tasting menus (one was tomato-based, the other was mushroom-based) that really struggled and came off a bit on the gimmicky side. We'll give it another try though.
If you like rustic French, Bistro Jeanty offers a pretty satisfying meal.
had lunch at Redd a couple of weeks ago and I really enjoyed it..not too loud which I have heard can be a problem.
food was very good.
I have never had a bad meal at Redd or Ubuntu and have been to both many times. I will be going to Redd the first week of Nov. again. I would suggest both. Used to go to Martini House but I get a food hangover from the food. I like the tasting menu at Redd but I think this time will opt for the regular menu. BTW , I was in Boston last year at this time and loved the lobster pasta at Neptune :-) (and the Pumpkin beer at Boston Beerworks)