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Dinner At French Laundry This Sunday, What Is Best Lunch Option?

  • b

Hi everyone,

I have a reservation this Sunday night for dinner at The French Laundry and am only going to be there for the day, and getting to the area early to make a day out of it. I want to know what would be the best lunch option in the area to make the most out of the trip. This will be my first time in up in the area and would like to know your opinions. The price or style of cuisine does not matter, just want the best taste and meal.

Some that I know of are:
Redd
Bottega
Bistro Jeanty

Also, any bakeries/snack places becides Bouchon Bakery that I should know of?

Thanks.

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The French Laundry
6640 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

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  1. If dinner is at The French Laundry, lunch should be very light, like a big salad or a light soup. Dinner will be big, you want to save room. Or you could have a relatively early brunch, depending on your dinner reservation time -- Brix has a lovely setting and has good reports for brunch, and I love the brunch at the Boon Fly Cafe.

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    The French Laundry
    6640 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

    Boon Fly Cafe
    4048 Sonoma Highway, Napa, CA 94559

    Brix
    7377 St. Helena Highway, Napa, CA 94558

    11 Replies
    1. re: JasmineG

      What time is your reservation at FL?

      1. re: lizziee

        My reservation is at 7:30.

        Im am taking public transportation all the way from SF. Doing the Ferry to Vallejo, then the Napa Vine 10 Bus there. Doing this all by myself I might add. Wanting to make a great day out of it. I am wondering whether to go straight to Yountville which after my research the earliest I can get there on a Sunday is 11:12. Or, stopping in Napa to check out Oxbox Market and all of its surrounding businesses.

        Is thew ferry/bus option still the better one than bart/bus/bus? I also plan on taking a cab home at the end of the night. Yes, I know it will be pricey but all public transportation will end to early on Sunday.

        Straight to Yountville for lunch or make a pit stop in Napa for snacks?

        1. re: benv

          That's awesome that you're taking public transportation there. It might be cheaper to see if you can find a cheap hotel on Highway 29 to stay in on Sunday night, and then do public transportation home on Monday, though -- the taxi all the way home is going to be REALLY expensive, and if you don't arrange it in advance, it's likely that it'll be hard to find someone who will take you. You could probably try to Priceline a hotel in Napa or Yountville for cheap and it will still come out cheaper.

          1. re: JasmineG

            The cheap hotel and a return on Monday morning is a good idea. There used to be a commuter bus that left Napa from the parking lot of one of the shopping centers very, very early in the morning. I think it was a commuter club whose members paid for it but they would allow non-members to pay by the ride. This was over 10 years ago when I used to take it occassionally from San Francisco to Napa on Friday evenings. I'm sure it must still exist in some form as there are a lot of people who commute to the City from Napa. Not sure how you find information about it--maybe the Napa Chamber of Commerce or Visitors' Center. I googled "Napa Valley Commute Club" and there is a telephone number but when I called it I got a recording saying the call could not be completed at this time. Anyhow, good luck!

            1. re: JasmineG

              Another idea is to call French Laundry and ask about a car service. Other people have mentioned that they have some the use on a regular basis and that they're reasonably priced. A flat rate should be cheaper than a metered taxi.

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              The French Laundry
              6640 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

            2. re: benv

              Where are you leaving from in SF? The Evans airport shuttle goes between Napa and SFO. Might be an option.

              Otherwise, I think hiring a private car for a long trip is not that different from hiring a taxi, and in some cases might be cheaper.

              1. re: SteveG

                An airport shuttle or a car service are good ideas. If you take either to the Richmond BART you might be a way to save some $$$ ($4.25 from Richmond to downtown SF)...although maybe not that much. Last train is at 12 midnight or there abouts.

                1. re: ML8000

                  I thought the usual dinner length was 4 hours. If true that doesn't get benv to Richmond BART by midnight even with extra fast driving with no traffic.

                  1. re: wolfe

                    I think a solo dinner goes a bit faster but you're right...it's still probably a 3-3.5 hour dinner. Safer to go direct, less hassle but it could be pricey. Airport shuttle is probably the most reasonable.

          2. re: JasmineG

            Brix is an all-you-can-eat buffet though, right? (and one that has gotten very good reports)

            That would take a lot of restraint if it were me

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            Brix
            7377 St. Helena Highway, Napa, CA 94558

            1. re: vulber

              True, but it all depends on timing -- if the reservation at TFL is at 9, and they get to Brix at 10, that would probably be about right.

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              Brix
              7377 St. Helena Highway, Napa, CA 94558

          3. Ubuntu is open for lunch Sundays. Perfect for a light lunch that will still be interesting.

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            Ubuntu Restaurant & Yoga Studio
            1140 Main Street, Napa, CA 94558

            4 Replies
            1. re: Morton the Mousse

              Ubuntu is a fantastic idea

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              Ubuntu Restaurant & Yoga Studio
              1140 Main Street, Napa, CA 94558

              1. re: vulber

                Still doing well after the Chef change?

                Would you recommend Ubuntu more than a place in Yountville? I was very interested in Ubuntu but I thought I heard some negative reports after the change. If its still doing well that might be the perfect idea.

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                Ubuntu Restaurant & Yoga Studio
                1140 Main Street, Napa, CA 94558

                1. re: benv

                  I have not been since the change. However, the recent Chronicle review noted no change in quality, and all other reports I have seen indicate that the quality is still there.

                  Not sure which places in Yountville you were considering, but many of the big names that come to mind will tend to give you a very heavy meal, which you definitely don't need; whereas the food at Ubuntu, while still somewhat dairy heavy, is considerably lighter.

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                  Ubuntu Restaurant & Yoga Studio
                  1140 Main Street, Napa, CA 94558

                  1. re: benv

                    This review was just a week or two ago---seems to still be great.

                    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article...

                    If I were you, I'd arrange for that cab ride home in advance. Taxi's just aren't that plentiful in Yountville.