Oenotri, Napa, CA

5forks

oenotri_logo

1425 1st St
Napa, CA 94559
(707) 252-1022
www.oenotri.com

Neighborhood: Downtown Napa
Cuisine: Italian
Cost: $$$ = $50 and less – Higher priced
Five Forks = Sets the standard for fine dining in the region and consistently provides superior quality dining

Hours:
Lunch: 11:30AM-2:30PM Everday
Dinner: 5:30PM-Close9:30PM Sunday through Thursday
5:30PM-10:00PM Friday and Saturday

SPECIAL FEATURES:  They change their lunch and dinner menus daily offering a menu with more than 20 different types of house-made salumi, that is aged in their own cave.  An array of handmade fresh and dry pasta’s are served  as well as exclusive olive oil sourced from within the Napa Valley.

Handicap accessible: Yes
Parking: Street
Vegetarian options: Yes
Kid friendly: No
Liquor served: Full Bar
Wine List: “Nothing ordinary” A treasure trove of some of Italy’s great wines, a collection from Umbria to Sicily.  A beautiful list of local offerings
Outdoor seating: Yes
Reservations: Yes

Tyler Rodde is the Chef-Owner and Jessica Baron manages Oenotri Farm, which provides up to eighty percent of the restaurant’s produce.  They also grow some of their greens in the kitchen.  Jessica collaborates with the chef to grow unique and delicious varieties and harvests each crop at the peak of its flavor.  Napa’s warm summers and mild winters allow the restaurant to serve farm-fresh vegetables all year long, so with each meal at the restaurant, you get a taste of the farm!

They are located in downtown Napa and part of their goal to serve quality artisanal pizza, in an imported from Naples wood-fueled Acino oven.  The menu is founded on and inspired by the abundance surrounding us in the Napa Valley and California.  They believe in making the farm-to-table transition as simple as possible, allowing the food to speak for itself while supporting sustainable and organic practices whenever possible.

Unique: “Italian food simplified.”  Rodde says “It’s all about keeping it simple. We don’t want muddled flavors. Each dish should have an opinion, and if there are 20 dishes on the menu, then let each of them have a different opinion.”

Our server was Jake and he was superb.  We had our choice of regular or bubbly water that was served in attractive carafes (along with wonderful Mayer Lemon wedges) and were both refilled often as Bill and I chose our own individual styles.  He was fun and very professional and also very knowledgeable of the menu.

The restaurant was warm and inviting.  I always appreciate when I can view an open kitchen!

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The ambiance is warm and comfortable with tables made from attractive wood.  Seating is comfortable and quiet enough to hold a conversation without yelling.  Love it!

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Complimentary Bread is apparently available upon request.  Unfortunately, we were unaware and hadn’t ordered it.  We later heard that it is really good.  It is served warm, it is apparently soft and fresh out of the oven with fantastic olive oil for dipping.  Next time we’ll try it!

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We enjoyed a glass of wine – Montepulciano $13 each 

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We started off with:  ANITPASTA – $10.50

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Shaved lettuces with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette and Parmigiano-Reggiano.  This was awesome!  It was fresh and flavorful and a large enough portion that was perfect for sharing.

Entree’s: Bill chose the PASTA – $19

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Linguine with Manila Clams, Scallops, Garlic, White Wine, Calabrian Chili and Rosemary.  Bill really enjoyed the flavor of this dish, but seriously?  THREE clams.  We had just been to Washington, where these clams are from.  We know that they are typically sold by the pound (about a dozen), which is a healthy main-course portion for one person; so this was pathetic.  Though scallops did help fill the dish, he wished he had more of the sweetest clams you will find in the market.

I selected the SECONDI – $29

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Halibut with Grilled King Trumpet Mushroom, Brocolli Romanesco, Mushroom Brodo, Green Garlic and Tokyo Turnips.  Again, the portions were very small.  This fish was cooked perfectly and went well with the meaty mushrooms and flavorful greens.  Perhaps had we known about the bread, we would have filled up a bit!

We were glad that we had decided to shared a CONTORNI – $7

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Roasted Sunchokes with Meyer Lemon, Pancetta and Pickled Mustard Seeds.  This dish was outstanding and flavorful!  We were not certain what a sunchoke was, but it is a tuber, like a potato, and is often prepared and eaten as a root vegetable.  Raw, it is light brown and bumpy on the outside and white inside and looks somewhat like a small potato or ginger root.  It was rich and meaty and paired perfectly with our fish dishes!

Coincidentally, we frequent PureCru that has a wonderful tasting bar just across the way in the corridor.  Mitch Cosentino is a well known wine maker who had  “been reminiscing about a small, hands-on entity where I could do it all (himself) again, like (he) did in the beginning.”  His new tasting room  features a long bar with plenty of tall leather chairs, tasting tables for groups, and a nice alcove off to the side where bands sometimes played during the evenings.  They have a private tasting room including a boardroom-sized tasting table for private or larger parties.  The advantage is that PureCru’s staff provides Oenotri menus for guests who would like to enjoy pizzas and small plates! 

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Private Dining Room at PureCru Wine Tasting Bar — Accommodates up to 14 Guests

Pure-Cru

On more than one occasion, we’ve ordered the PIZZA’s to enjoy while sipping on the great wines at PureCru!  The pizzas are baked in a 100-percent wood-burning oven, imported from Naples Italy.  We’ve enjoyed numerous varieties and each have been outstanding!

Margherita –  $14

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Mozzarella Di Bufala, San Marzano Tomato Sauce and Oregano

Panna – $17

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Green Garlic Crema, Mozarella Di Bufala, Silver Moon Squash, Black Pepper, Young Kale and Nettles.

Lamb Sausage – $16.50

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With San Marzano Tomato Sauce, Hot Pepper, Mozarella Di Bufala, Carmaelized Onion and Arugula

Intenso – $17

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Cream, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pisachio’s and Green Garlic

We finished our meal with Dessert:  Hazelnut Torta – $9

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Fig Conserva and Olive Oil Gelato.  The best way to describe this is “to die for”!  

Latte – $4.50

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This was a perfect finish to a delicious meal!  They also include complimentary Olive Oil cookies with your check.  A nice touch.

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No doubt, we’ll be back!

Bon appetit!

~Chris

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