Ad Hoc (Yountville, CA)

Ad Hoc
6476 Washington St
Yountville, CA 94599
Dining date: 8/30/15

Ad HocI’ve been to Thomas Keller’s Ad Hoc twice before (with the last visit over five years ago) and been to Addendum once, earlier this year. While looking for a brunch spot for a large party, Ad Hoc came up as the popular choice.

This would be my first time having brunch here. Ad Hoc offers one daily menu, 3-4 courses served family style. The restaurant sometimes serves its famous fried chicken in a classic chicken and waffles dish for brunch; I was really hoping for this but it wasn’t in the cards this afternoon.

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Redd Wood (Yountville, CA)

Redd Wood
6755 Washington St
Yountville, CA 94599
Dining date: 5/24/15

redd wood

Yountville might as well be called Kellerville from a food perspective since Thomas Keller’s restaurants here clearly dominate the national headlines (and for good reason). However, Yountville is home to many other recognized chefs and restaurants including this one.

Redd Wood opened in 2012, the second restaurant by chef Richard Reddington. Reddington consistently garnered Michelin stars for upscale sister restaurant Redd down the street, but this more approachable Italian spot has been just as popular if not moreso.

Redd Wood was the choice for a lunch in between morning and afternoon wine tastings in Napa Valley. We ordered a few items across the menu for a sampling – some salumi, one appetizer, one pizza and one pasta.

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Addendum (Yountville, CA)

Addendum
6476 Washington St
Yountville, CA 94599
Dining date: 5/25/15

addendum

Addendum opened in 2011 behind Ad Hoc serving picnic favorites on Thursdays through Saturdays for lunch (Spring/Summer only). It’s easily the most approachable way to try some of Thomas Keller’s food in Yountville since it doesn’t require making a reservation and is very family-friendly. Food is ordered from a little shack in the back and eaten throughout picnic benches or even on the lush grassy areas.

Ad Hoc’s most famous dish has to be its herb-brined fried chicken served every other Monday night. But here at Addendum, the chicken is always on the lunch menu (along with BBQ pork ribs or pulled pork and a couple of rotating side dishes).

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I’ve had the fried chicken at Ad Hoc before (and again at Bouchon Beverly Hills, even cooking it once at home), but it’s been a while since I’ve had it. Following our dinner at The French Laundry, we came here for a quick meal before leaving town. We picked up a bucket of fried chicken and an order of pork ribs to eat on the picnic tables. It was a beautiful day to be outside with a bucket of fried chicken.

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The French Laundry (Yountville, CA) [2]

The French Laundry
6640 Washington St
Yountville, CA 94599
Dining date: 5/24/15

EXTERIOR

I’ve been lucky enough to visit The French Laundry a handful of times. It’s always a memorable experience with delicious food, precise execution, and warm service. This most recent visit was thanks to a reservation I was able to obtain when the restaurant’s reservation books opened up following their closure since the holidays. The kitchen has been completely torn down in preparation to build a much larger state-of-the-art version; it’s currently replaced with four temporary shipping container kitchens (they’re much, much nicer than it seems).

A visit to The French Laundry isn’t complete without a stroll through the gardens across the street.

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The famous blue door.

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Oenotri (Napa, CA)

Oenotri
1425 1st St
Napa, CA 94559
Dining date: 5/23/15

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Oenotri has been a popular spot for Italian food in Napa since opening in 2010. The restaurant combines the flavors of southern Italy and with local Napa Valley produce for a unique Cal-Italian blend. Much of its produce is sourced from its own garden, breads are made in-house every day, and the restaurant maintains an on-site salumi program. Typically the signs of a great restaurant. I’ve heard plenty of good things about the restaurant over the years and stopped in for dinner while in Napa over Memorial Day weekend.

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Stones Throw (San Francisco, CA)

Stones Throw
1896 Hyde St
San Francisco, CA 94109
Dining date: 12/28/14

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For the past number of years, my cousins and I have taken my grandma out for a birthday dinner over the Christmas holiday. This year, we decided on a restaurant in close proximity to my grandmother, Stone’s Throw in the Russian Hill neighborhood. The new American restaurant has been a hit since opening just over a year ago and it would be a new restaurant for all six of us (except for one cousin who had visited previously).

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We ordered a number of small plates to share and each ordered a main course.

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