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Dining in Napa, Sonoma, North Bay, and Sacramento

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Had a really lovely lunch at Girl and the Fig.  The steak tartare and the flounder were particularly nice.

Cochon Volant BBQ was strong in everything except pork ribs, which is about average for restaurant ribs, ie barely edible.

Oxbow Market is well worth a visit, though very busy even at 3:30ish.  Hog Island Oysters reminded me how much I miss eating West Coast oysters on the West Coast.

Definitely enjoyed the smaller tasting room and vineyards to the big boys.  

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Going to Napa for 2 1/2-3 days.  We have a res at Ad-Hoc as a little homage to our Honeymoon dinner at the French Laundry.  We also have a Vintage VW bus tour of wineries.  We will go to Hagafen, Paraduxx and Pestoni.  Domaine Carneros looks interesting as I am a Tatt fan and like sparkling. 

Need to look up what other places we might want to visit... suggestions happily accepted. I have a huge amount of wineries on my google map, that I don't remember where they came from.  Perhaps a food and wine article, or perhaps from James May and Oz Clark's special- not quite sure, so they could be total trash.  (Curses former self for not filling in more details on the comments section of her google map).

I haven't figured out any other food yet, we will have lunch with our tour.  And I am sure we will check out Oxbrow for one meal.  

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I like visiting Domaine Carneros. I’m not sure when you are going, but there is a cool contemporary art installation, Di Rosa, very near the winery. It’s closed now, but reopening the end of this month.

For food in the area, you can’t go wrong with Ciccio or Oenotri for Italian, or Boon Fly Cafe for fried chicken. If you’re going to Ad Hoc, however, fried chicken may not be on your radar. 

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Ad Hoc is *far* superior to the overrated Bistro Jeanty - the bread and butter at Ad Hoc is some of the best you'll have, anywhere.

I am all-in on Boon Fly Cafe for fried chicken - it's fantastic, and you can't go wrong doing that. DIShGo has a great palate, and Ciccio is a wonderful place for wood-fired entrees and really good (top-level) pizza - none of these places are remotely junk food.

It's too bad Fremont Diner has closed; it was a tremendous place for all-day breakfast, but don't forget about Oxbow Market for a mid-day meal.

If you go to San Francisco this trip, you must go to Swan Oyster Depot - it may be my favorite restaurant of its type in the world (cash only). You'll need to get there 30-minutes before it opens and wait in line, and you'll understand why you do once you've eaten there.

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On 1/11/2020 at 1:59 AM, DonRocks said:

Ad Hoc is *far* superior to the overrated Bistro Jeanty - the bread and butter at Ad Hoc is some of the best you'll have, anywhere.

I am all-in on Boon Fly Cafe for fried chicken - it's fantastic, and you can't go wrong doing that. DIShGo has a great palate, and Ciccio is a wonderful place for wood-fired entrees and really good (top-level) pizza - none of these places are remotely junk food.

It's too bad Fremont Diner has closed; it was a tremendous place for all-day breakfast, but don't forget about Oxbow Market for a mid-day meal.

If you go to San Francisco this trip, you must go to Swan Oyster Depot - it may be my favorite restaurant of its type in the world (cash only). You'll need to get there 30-minutes before it opens and wait in line, and you'll understand why you do once you've eaten there.

Thanks to you and DishGo for the recs.  Have any winery recs?  Likely only have time to visit 1-2.  I don't mind trying to reserve something, and don't mind paying a good bit for a tasting.  Noted on Swan Oyster, I might be able to do that when I go back in May!

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On 1/11/2020 at 1:59 AM, DonRocks said:

Ad Hoc is *far* superior to the overrated Bistro Jeanty - the bread and butter at Ad Hoc is some of the best you'll have, anywhere.

I am all-in on Boon Fly Cafe for fried chicken - it's fantastic, and you can't go wrong doing that. DIShGo has a great palate, and Ciccio is a wonderful place for wood-fired entrees and really good (top-level) pizza - none of these places are remotely junk food.

It's too bad Fremont Diner has closed; it was a tremendous place for all-day breakfast, but don't forget about Oxbow Market for a mid-day meal.

If you go to San Francisco this trip, you must go to Swan Oyster Depot - it may be my favorite restaurant of its type in the world (cash only). You'll need to get there 30-minutes before it opens and wait in line, and you'll understand why you do once you've eaten there.

The donuts, don't forget the donuts at BFC.  If you can stay at Carneros Inn, their individual cabins with outdoor showers, heated floors and awesome views are spectacular.

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4 hours ago, ktmoomau said:

Thanks to you and DishGo for the recs.  Have any winery recs?  Likely only have time to visit 1-2.  I don't mind trying to reserve something, and don't mind paying a good bit for a tasting.  Noted on Swan Oyster, I might be able to do that when I go back in May!

There are some lovely wineries in St. Helena, and it is a charming town to visit. I found this map online that lists the wineries by town, which might help you limit your choices. I asked a good friend who lives in the Napa Valley and visits a lot of wineries there, and she recommended going to Hall and Duckhorn up north in St. Helena, and stopping at a smaller winery, like Sequoia Grove or Pina, which is on the Silverado Trail.

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Sequoia was in a YouTube vlog I saw and looked beautiful, nice to know it is good!  Thank you, thank you, very helpful!!!!

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17 hours ago, ktmoomau said:

Sequoia was in a YouTube vlog I saw and looked beautiful, nice to know it is good!  Thank you, thank you, very helpful!!!!

I've been a member at Sequoia Grove for a couple years.  I highly recommend their "Taste of Cabernet" tasting - it was informative and a lot of fun.

A couple other wineries that I've enjoyed my visits to: Quintessa, Venge, Larkmead, Caldwell (down in Coombsville but the caves are cool)

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A few years ago we were told to make an appointment at Round Two near St. Helena.  When we called on our way  the winemaker son lead us to his dad house.  Dad apologized for the rain, sat us at his dining table and discussed his philosophy of winemaking for 3+ hours while pouring and pouring great wine.  Dad, Dennis Johns has been involved in the business for many years.  His passion was phenomenal.

http://www.roundtwowines.com/press/about

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