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Approaching Wine at the French Laundry???


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Restaurants & Bars San Francisco Bay Area French Yountville Wine

Approaching Wine at the French Laundry???

Oklahoman | | Apr 17, 2010 12:02 PM

Background Information: Hi! I am new to Chowhound and this is my first post so bear with me. My husband and I are visting the San Francisco area next week (April 21-25). We will be spending the first two nights in Yountville and the last two nights in SFO.

I was lucky enough to score reservations at the French Laundry on Thursday, April 22nd @ 6:00 and am thrilled. Although, I am very perplexed about the how to approach the wine part of the evening. My husbad and I enjoy many different wines, but are certainly not "experienced" in wine, as many seem to be in the Napa area.

I have viewed the wine list online, and to be perfectly honest, I don't know that I am familiar with many, if any, of the wines on the list. I also called the restaurant to inquire about a pairing, since no pairing information is listed on the website. I was told that they do a pairing, but since the menu changes everyday, the pairing changes as well and to expect a cost of around 250/pp for wine pairing.

Although the pairing seems inticing, I am not interest in spending 500 on wine. Ideally, I would like to stay in the 200-300 price range for the two of us.

Oh, and I have reasearched the other post on here about TFL, but it seems that the questions dealing with the wine at TFL are several years old.

The Questions:
1. Is 200-300 total a reasonable amount to spend on wine from TFL, meaning will we be able to drink throughout the meal reasonable wine?

2. Should I consider bringing my own wine and fork over the $50/bottle corkage?

3. Should I give the "captain" an amount that we would like to spend on wine and allow him/her to select for us?

4. Should I try to select wine upfront from the wine list? If this seems to be the best choice, how should I approach it seeing as I am unfamiliar with the majority of wines on the list?

Any and all help or suggestions are appreciated. Thanks in advance!

The French Laundry
6640 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599