I need suggestions on what to order at Auberge du Soleil and Bottega...
We have reservations and want to know what we need to order at these great restaurants that we are trying for the first time...
We went two weeks ago on Saturday for lunch. Here is the scoop:
Had Crudo...Hamachi...raw...2 slices and a "scoop" of Salmon steak tatar...all quite good but not special and v. small portion....I would suggest you skip it.
Then we had Salumi plater...not bad but v.v. tiny portion...skip it.
Also, had Octopus..v.v. nice....small portion but I would get it again because it was really good.
For mains I had Pork and Olive sausage...not bad but nothig special...skip it...my better half had the Short Ribs which were super nice...decent size portion...get it! Saw other people have Gnocchi and Risotto which both looked v. good. Overall nice experience....will repeat....I would try it again for dinner since some of the dishes (i.e Pappardelle) are not available for Lunch. Nice/good service.....
At Bottega, the grilled octopus is fab and the airfilled pastry wrapped in proscuitto dipped in lambrusco is great. If you like steak they have an incredible one but its for two.
I'd urge you to do a Chowhound or Google search (with Chowhound as one of your search terms). Search for Napa restaurants and the individual restaurants by name, and read the reviews from many people. A thread on Napa restaurants appears about twice a week on the SF Bay Area board it seems.
Two couples - Bottega - mid-August '09 - We had I believe an 8:00 dinner rez and we arrived slightly before 8. The restaurant was buzzing with lots of people sitting outside in the lounge area and inside. We were still not seated at 8:20 or so and the very professional (older) hostess brought us all champagne flutes of Proseco … and we were seated very shortly thereafter. Our waiter, Joel, was a very happy, engaging young man and we enjoyed his service very much. Our dinners were uniformly delicious … we each very much enjoyed our meals. Our friends shared the “Burrata Caprese” creamy mozzarella burrata with heirloom tomatoes, basil oil & balsamic “caviar” $14 - they couldn’t stop mentioning how good it was .. it was lovely to look at also. They both had the Wood Grilled Rack of Grass-Fed Lamb fresh & oven roasted cherry dressing, creamy ancient grain polenta $32 - I tasted my friends’ and the lamb was delish.
I had an interesting salad starter - Sugar Snap Pea & Raw Sweet Corn Salad marcona almonds, sieved egg, pecorino, whole citrus vinaigrette $9 - I thought it was really good and lots of good for you fibre too!!! For my main I had Ricotta gnocchi, salsa di pomodoro della Nonna, pecorino $15 - these gnocchi were so light and the serving was just the right amount … I loved it. My husband had a very interesting appetizer - Bacon & Egg Pork belly confit in olive oil, crispy soft-boiled egg, slow roasted peppers, onions & cherry tomatoes $15 - when I first saw it I didn’t think he would like it, but when I looked again it was all gone … he loved it. So the theme here is … this is a really good restaurant. The chef Michael Chiarello was making rounds through the restaurant … he didn’t stop at our table but he was very visible.
Do it ... you'll be glad you did (I think).