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etoile - Napa/Yountville

 
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Dilbert



Joined: 19 Oct 2007
Posts: 1026
Location: central PA

PostPosted: Fri Nov 07, 2014 8:10 pm    Post subject: etoile - Napa/Yountville Reply with quote

Dinner at étoile - Domaine Chandon - Yountville / CA





Depending on which review site one reads, étoile outranks The French Laundry in the Napa Valley area.
We were able to get dinner reservations at étoile; The French Laundry web site has been under (re-)construction for mulitple weeks; The French Laundry does not answer the phone - so if you can get any attention from The French Laundry you could be in luck in getting a reservation, as apparently very few people are permitted any contact.

We had much better luck at étoile. The four course tasting menu is 98 USD per head - a bargin as really good restaurants go.
starters were:
- Beet salad w/ fourme d'ambert; petit greens; poached quince


- Veal sweetbreads w/ lentils; chanterelle; butternut squash - very nice flavor combination!


Followed by

- Pan seared Diver Scallop on a bed of mint w/ cauliflower florets and grapefruit nuggets. Delicious, well prepared, described as "diver scallop" but in reality much smaller - what we on the east coast call "sea scallop" size. Technically diver scallop are defined by "hand harvested" - an east coast default of hand selection is larger size.



For our main courses:
- Ribeye of Prime Beef w/ quail egg; celery root; be of quinoa - absolutely splendid, perfect sauce, tender and very flavorful.


- Suckling Berkshire Pork - persimmon; golden raisins; radish+scallion medley - Berkshire is an 'heirloom' breed - pork 'old style' before pork was bred to be a lean 'other white meat' - if you have the opportunity to get Berkshire pork, it is very good - not to pass up.


Desserts changes frequently - DW did a chocolate confection which was stellar.


I had the Prickly Pear Sorbet - because I've not had prickly pear - very good stuff! garnished with a sliced/dehydrated/deep fried/salted slice of celery root - which did not work for me; toss the garnish, enjoy the sorbet.

Accompanied by a Matanzas Creek Merlot (2011) - as recommended by the sommelier to be a soft merlot - spot on; good recommendation, the man knows his stuff.

Various delectable amuse-bouche and very nice crusty rolls.
I have seen one scathing review about bad service; we did not see or experience that. Service was absolute excellent - Josie did a bang-up job of Q&A and attention without imposing.

Domaine Chandon has extensive, well tended gardens. Visiting in the fall, it was getting dark at our reservation time - the humming birds were out in full force. If you have time/daylight, walking the gardens is a good side visit.

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