I just spent a wonderful four days in Napa. Having been to Paris just last month, I can say without equivocation that the food in the Vally overall surpassed what we've had in Europe. The freshness of the ingredients and the innovative use are astounding!
The highlights were a peach, grilled vidalia onion, proscuitto appetizer at Solbar along with a flatiron steak that was the best beef I have ever eaten. We had been to Viader that afternoon and opened a gorgeous cab blend that got better and better in the glass. Service at the lounge for a pre-dinner drink was terrible - poor management of staff - but once we were seated at dinner, it was delightful.
The Grill at Meadowood was also stunning. We didn't have reservations in The Restaurant but were more than satisfied with the Grill. The heirloom tomatoes tasted like candy and the halibut with chorizo was sensational.
I think the food at Meadowood trumps the food at Auberge. We had a lunch and a dinner at the Bistro. While nothing competes with that view, I thought the food was just good, not great - didn't compare to some of the other food we had in the Valley.
A picnic at Pride Mountain was a highlight, and the sweet corn soup with tortilla dust at CIA was glorious! I'm thinking about making Napa my annual vacation spot.