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Restaurants & Bars 1

Napa Valley Grille / Bouchon reviews

Christine | Feb 21, 200504:51 PM

After being told there would be a 45-minute wait at Mustard Grill for Sunday lunch, we decided to venture back to Yountville instead.

The Napa Valley Grille welcomed us and had a table of 5 ready for us in minutes. Beautiful dining room with lots of windows, wood paneling, and a semi-open kitchen. Bar area has small tables that separate it from the rest of the dining room with a low wall. Menu of the day placed before us had a few signature dishes and some brunch items.

Bread there is wonderful! A focaccia and a more crusty-type bread. We couldn't get enough of it, and the server was more than happy to keep refilling the basket. The menu said that their burgers were served on Bouchon loaf, so I'm guessing most of their baked goods are from that bakery (with the exception of English muffins, which were plain old Thomas' english muffins- we saw the package when we walked past the kitchen).

Food roundup:
- Dungeness crab sandwich: crab with parmesan & artichoke in a creamy sauce. Served open-faced on crusty baguette. A little too rich for my taste- all cream and cheese, not enough crab. Could have used something fresh or tangy on the plate like a salad or pickles. The housemade potato chips were excellent- still warm and pleasantly non-greasy. $14.50
- Crab cakes served with poached eggs, spicy sauce, & potatoes. Did not get to try it, but my friend raved about it and said the sauce was not as spicy as she thought it would be. $14.50
- Croque monsieur: toasted brioche filled with pork. Served with lettuce & endive salad. Thick-cut brioche that was well toasted and seemed stuffed with meat. Easily the largest serving out of all of our meals. Pork looked thinly sliced and juicy. $13.75
- Harvest Platter 15.25
house smoked king salmon, crème fraiche, marshall's farm honeycomb, air cured beef, proscuitto, sky hill "feta", cypress grove "purple haze", artisan foie gras terrine, stone ground mustard, fleur de sel, raisins-on-the-vine; it looked interesting but the portions of everything were very small. Not enough for a meal but good with a glass of wine as a snack.

Overall, we had a hard time choosing our entrees because everything sounded so good. Service was good, although our server was so cheerful she would leave us speechless with her loud chirpy replies whenever we asked for something as simple as bread. But I'd rather have that than disinterested service! They sell bath products scented with lavendar in the front, you'd catch a whiff of lavendar in the restaurant every once in awhile. Very pleasant to me, but wonder if it could be too strong for other diners.

ONTO Bouchon Bakery...

After having the wonderful bread at Napa Valley Grille, I decided we had to stop at Bouchon Bakery on our way out of Yountville. I purchased a chocolate madeleine filled with some kind of cherry filling $.95, a raspberry macaroon $2.50, and olive bread $4 or 5?

Gave my sister the madeleine so don't know how it tasted, but it was interesting that they only had chocolate ones and not lemon or regular.

Raspberry macaroon is larger than the ones you get at Miette in the Ferry Building. More like the larger-sized ones you can buy in Paris. Light, slightly flaky, and good filling. I loved it even though it was overpriced.

Olive bread wasn't sampled until the next morning, but was dense and still moist. Even though I don't really like olives, it had good flavor, texture and a nice crust.

The bakery had a good mixture of sweets and breads. They have ready made sandwiches like ham and gruyere on baguette for diners who want to have a picnic.

Overall: I would go there again if I was in the area, but would not make a special trip just to buy baked goods.


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