Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
Nov 17, 2009 03:08 PM

Napa: Meat at Ubuntu - “No Holds Barred, No Rules” dinners on Tuesdays during the winter

Thanks to hhc for sending me this link to the Napa Register

"Starting in December, one of the restaurant’s now “dark” nights will be a Tuesday “No Holds Barred, No Rules” dinner where chef Jeremy Fox will personally prepare and serve a family-style, all-inclusive meal for up to 18 guests per night"

A comment complains about the restaurant serving meat on Tuesday. I read that article carefully and found no mention. The Ubuntu website is being redesigned (thank heavens) so no info there.

So I googled and found this from SFoodie

"owner Sandy Lawrence told SFoodie that, as early as next month, the Napa vegetarian restaurant is launching a series of Tuesday night dinners that'll feature appearances by what she called some of the nation's top chefs. ... and feature single-seating family-style dinners that will depart from chef Jeremy Fox's typical style -- even, in some cases, offering meat."

The article says the menu will be posted one week before the dinner

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The comments from the outraged customers are interesting. How does one revegetarianize a kitchen. Is it similar to this link?

    15 Replies
    1. re: wolfe

      The staff meal at ubuntu features meat, if you go in their walk in you'll see lots of meat used for family meal. I'm not sure if they use special cookware just for family meal, I highly doubt it, but if one goes in expecting that nothing in that place has ever touched meat, they're sadly mistaken.

      1. re: wolfe

        >The comments from the outraged customers are interesting.<

        I find the "outraged customers" part pretty sad when I don't think it's funny. Talk about PC...

        >How does one revegetarianize a kitchen.<

        What? Since when did vegetarian mean no meat on the premises? And as has already been posted, there's always been meat cooked there.

        1. re: Mick Ruthven

          MR and PD, I'm "shocked,shocked" that you have taken my post seriously. I haven't seen self righteous comments like the ones in that link since the letter responding to the theft of Le Creuset tops, from stores, due the their disintegration from the high heat used in the "no-knead bread" recipe. " That is exactly the behavior one would expect from people who don't knead their bread." ;-) ;-)

          1. re: Mick Ruthven

            I find it sad, also. Furthermore, Ubuntu has never promoted itself as a "vegetarian" restaurant, i.e. one that follows the precepts of vegetarianism. It's always called itself a "vegetable" restaurant, i.e. a restaurant that cooks vegetables because the chef is interested in working with vegetables, not for any philosophical reasons.

            1. re: Ruth Lafler

              They may have backed off from the claim, and the chef may have distanced himself from term, but they've been strictly vegetarian since they opened, and in their opening press release, they said:

              "Ubuntu Restaurant and Yoga Studio, Napa’s newest and only vegetarian restaurant and combined yoga studio, celebrated their grand opening ..."


              1. re: Ruth Lafler

                Actually he wasn't so interested on his own. The owner of Ubuntu was the force behind this and approached Fox to see if he was interested. IIRC, there were a number of candidates for chef at Ubuntu

                Maybe the enui we all get in the winter set in. Where you look at what is available and wonder what you are going to do with another damn root vegetable.

                1. re: rworange

                  rw, since I know you are a fan of the place (as am I, particularly after my last visit this past Spring) does this mean that you'd recommend I not choose it for dinner when I am up in the area the day after Christmas? How does Ubuntu do with root vegetables, anyway?

                  Oh well, I've been on an unsuccesful and unsatisfied search for the best savory dish with egg (more interested in result of a soft yolk to mix in with other ingerdients than I am in how it is prepared) and am hoping that perhaps Ubuntu will deliver.

                  In any event, it is one of the few places that is an easy sell for hubby, which is probably reason enough to eat there.....

                  1. re: susancinsf

                    You might start a new topic for best dishes with an egg on top.

                    1. re: susancinsf


                      Off topic and it's a scrambled egg not a runny yolk, but Seasalt has a great cauliflower dish with scrambled eggs, feta and croutons that I would recommend.

                      1. re: susancinsf

                        OT but how about Commis for either amuse of poached hen's egg with onion puree, granola and chives or starter of soft farm egg with potato and allium, fermented black garlic and pork jowl. The latter seem s to be on the menu a fair bit and they were both v good.

                        1. re: susancinsf

                          Susan, have you had the piperade with serrano ham and poached egg at Piperade?

                          1. re: susancinsf

                            Ubuntu is great in the winter too. In fact, my first visit that impressed me so much was in December.

                    2. re: wolfe

                      I read the replies from a couple of folks. I'm just wondering, do they only eat in 100% vegetarian restaurants? If so their restaurant dinning is likely quite limited.

                      1. re: skwid

                        It's because the owners are despoiling the vegetal temple with live sacrifices. Of course they did it before but it was "secret."

                    3. From today's report in the Chron, it sounds like they backed away from the meat idea. Chef Jeremy Fox and Commis's James Syhabout are teaming up to serve a family-style vegetarian meal to 18 people (already sold out, of course).