Taking a wine train through the stunning countryside while drinking award-winning wines is an experience you’ll never forget. Start or end your day with an authentic 4 or 16-course meal at some of the best restaurants in the country. Here are the 5 Best Restaurants In Napa Valley, California
5. Goose and Gander
We open up our 5 Best Restaurants In Napa Valley, California with one of our favorites. Goose and Gander is a hot spot for cocktails on the patio and its attractive surroundings. It’s a gastropub that serves comforting American food, local wines, and over 35 specialty cocktails. It’s the perfect place to start your Napa Valley adventure noshing on charcuterie boards of the local cheeses in the courtyard. The Goose and Gander burger made with grass-fed beef and topped with a duck egg is a delicious choice with a side of duck fat fries.
They decorate the restaurant with geese in the upstairs dining area, and the basement bar is a cozy place for a romantic rendezvous. Have a cocktail garnished with edible herbs and flowers while eating the grilled octopus, or Akaushi New York steak with confit fingerlings and blue lake bean dousha. This is what we mean when we say 5 Best Restaurants In Napa Valley, California.
4. The Restaurant at Cia Copia
Located in downtown Napa, the Restaurant at Cia Copia is one of the newer eateries presented by the Culinary Institute of America. The cuisine is inspired by ingredients from the local gardens and farms in Napa Valley. The food isn’t fussy or pretentious, it’s simple and delicious and well-paired with handcrafted cocktails and wine. The wait staff are warm and friendly, and the chefs are always happy to interact with you during service.
The open kitchen allows you to watch the chef’s knife and cooking skills while you dine. A few doors down is the Oxbow Public Market where you can purchase gourmet cooking tools and ingredients. Cia Copia also offers hands-on cooking classes, teaching you how to bake professional looking cakes and homemade cheese. Start off with the Cucumber and Marcona Almond Gazpacho sumac, yogurt, and mint, and end with the decadent Garganelli Pasta with snap peas, favas, lemon, Bellwether ricotta, and black pepper.
Inside the Solage Resort in Calistoga, you’ll find the bright and casual Solbar restaurant. It’s a favorite among the locals of Napa and easily belongs on our 5 Best Restaurants In Napa Valley, California list. Residents of Napa Valley gather here to socialize under the 20-foot fire pit and the palm tree decorated terrace. The menu has something for everyone including the kids with a full menu of children’s classics. Solbar is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and serves everything from light fare to savory food that will soothe your soul.
The restaurant interior is reminiscent of a San Francisco loft that gives off a relaxing vibe. Passing through the tall sliding glass doors, you see sweeping views of the Palisades Mountains. Executive chef Gustavo Rios will serve up his best Cubano Sandwich, Steak Frites, and Crispy Dungeness Crab Cakes.
Miminashi is a hip pub-style sushi restaurant that gives you a break from the California cuisine throughout Napa Valley. The hand-carved front doors of the restaurant resemble Mt. Fuji, and the interior is designed to look like a Buddhist temple. It’s decorated with wooden tables and booths that have high backs for extra privacy. The arrow-shaped bar makes it easy for solo diners to socialize.
Miminashi uses seasonal vegetables found locally in their hearty noodle and rice bowls. Authentic yakitori is their specialty, skewered over a hot binchotan. My personal favorite are the sweet corn fritters and the pan-fried chicken gyoza. If meat isn’t your thing, opt for the Roasted Japanese Sweet Potato with Miso butter, crème fraiche, tenkasu, and fermented chili. Don’t leave without ordering the zucchini bread flavored soft serve ice cream.
1. The French Laundry
Closing out our 5 Best Restaurants In Napa Valley, California is a legendary wonderful restaurant. The French Laundry deserves the title of the best restaurant in Northern California. If you’ve got the money to spend, this is the spot in Napa Valley that must make your bucket list. For $300 a plate, you can dine on Royal Ossetra Caviar, Island Creek Oysters, and Japanese Wagyu. The building was originally used to operate a French steam laundry and is now home to Thomas Keller’s culinary dream.
You will have your pick of six different salts from all over the country, a sharing and tasting menu, and an extensive list of fine wines. The chef’s at The French Laundry pay special attention to detail and their dishes look like a work of art. It’s known as one of the most difficult restaurants to get a reservation so you’ll need to book months in advance.