1st Napa trip need help
My husband and I will take our 1st trip to Napa in Oct. we need help on lunchs and dinners. Some places I have looked at Graces table, Mustard's, Oenetri, Carpe Diem and Bistro Sabor. Would love any and all opinions. What wineries should not be missed? Also any other don't miss things to do. We will be in Napa for 5 nights.
Girl & Fig/Sonoma got famous on Chris Jones' cooking. He moved to Brix on the Napa/Yountville border (next to Mustards) and is doing a terrific job since summer 2011. We returned to Brix last month (April) and the second visit was just as successful as the first.
If one is going to trek to the city of Sonoma (the crowds on the hwy can be hideous at times) La Salette would be a good choice, or Barndiva just off the Square.
For Napa, some relatively inexpensive eats at Oxbow Marketplace can offset the high prices elsewhere. It's all relative, of course: if you're from NY or Hawaii or Tokyo, Napa/Yountville/St. Helena etc. won't be a shocker. If you're from someplace not as outrageously expensive, your credit card will suffer a heavy beating after five days, LOL.
Here's the thing: are you winetasting? Because if you are, you should plan your meals to be not too far from your last pre-lunch and last pre-dinner stops. Driving back and forth on Hwy 29 gets very old, very fast.........!
Carpe Diem is wildly inconsistent, I'm afraid - some times the offerings are opulent and filling and other times, I am left hungry. In one week alone, the salmon came in around 4 oz for the entree and later that week, it was probably 8 oz.
Instead, consider Zuzu which has been a consistent favorite for over a decade.
I'm not a fan of Mustards as it specializes in large plates of roast meat which - to me - is just boring.
Bistro Sabor is better for lunch than dinner, I think.
Other favorites include Angele, JoLe (Calistoga), Goose & Gander and Cook (both in St. Helena).
Avoid: The Thomas, Celadon.
Do visit, the Oxbow market, there are many stores to shop there. I really like the spice shop, all kinds of spices,salts and herbs. I also like the Three twin organic ice cream there. You will find something you will fall in love with.
So I don't know your tastes and expectations but if I were planning for myself, I would have one leisurely lunch at Bouchon. Solid technique making classic French bistro food. It's not exciting but it's comforting and well executed. Eat a dozen of oysters. Order sides of rillettes, cornichons. Sit at the bar. Tuck your napkin in your shirt. Dig in.