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Oct 7, 2013 06:04 PM

Best Napa Restaurant for a Special Occasion

Hello Everyone!

I am new to this board and would really appreciate any recommendations
you can give me for a great restaurant in Napa to celebrate a very special
birthday. Looking for good seafood, great ambience, fairly
reasonable prices, and no corkage fee would be a bonus!

Thanks so much!

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  1. Seafood makes me think of Morimoto Napa (but not sure if one would consider that reasonable)

    4 Replies
      1. re: goldangl95

        Also thought of Morimoto (dramatic presentations, fun atmosphere).

        And, Meadowood (exotic seafood from around the world,
        beautiful presentations, elegant, comfy)

        But neither are reasonable.

        Good seafood, great ambience, free corkage, and reasonable = tall order in Napa Valley.

        You might want to head out to Hog Island on the Pacific Coast. You get everything you're asking for there. Make a reservation for a picnic table.

        1. re: maria lorraine

          Been there a handful of times, and for what you get, Morimoto seems fairly priced, or close to it. But it's not inexpensive. It's the quality of the food, the presentation, the general all-around excellence, that justifies the higher price, to me. For a special occasion birthday, it might be perfect.

        2. re: goldangl95

          I found Morimoto too hit-and-miss given the incredibly high prices. I'll go back for the $25 bento lunch someday.

        3. I don't know if you're going to drive around the area, but about an hour north in Healdsburg, Willi's Seafood and Raw Bar is pretty fantastic:

          Best oysters I've ever had, and I try as many as I can get my hands on :) Also pictured, a seared tuna tartare, lobster roll, and uni mac & cheese.

          4 Replies
          1. re: foietographer

            This place sounds great; the pics look delicious!

            Thank you for the recommendation!!

            1. re: foietographer

              foie, have you tried Bravas around the corner from Willi's (same owners, the Stark Group)? We thought it was much better than Willi's, actually. Great outdoor patio, too, reminiscent of Girl & Fig but bigger.

              1. re: jaiko

                Hi Jaiko, I haven't but I really enjoyed Girl and the Fig, so I'll put Bravas on the list next time we head up north. Thanks! :)

                1. re: jaiko

                  Sounds good too! Thank you for the suggestion.

              2. I can't think of any restaurant in Napa that doesn't charge corkage...

                Fish Story in Napa is the most fish-centric restaurant in town, but it is far from exceptional or special.

                Sadly, seafood isn't as big of a deal in the valley as it should be. My favorites for seafood would include Auberge and Meadowood, but those are far from reasonable in the pricing category. Morimoto has the best sushi offerings but - again - not even close to reasonable.

                A few of my favorite restaurants have one-off seafood courses (Angele for their salmon, Grace's Table for seared scallops and roasted halibut), but those are not necessarily special occasion restaurants.

                1 Reply
                1. re: CarrieWas218

                  Not right in Napa but a relatively short drive away is Rutherford Grill which has free corkage and a menu that doesn't break the bank.

                  Not the best dining in Napa Valley but offers good value.
                  Just another option to consider.