Tuesday, March 23, 2010
17th Annual Taste of Yountville
I completely lucked out that the 17th Annual Taste of Yountville happened on the same weekend as my friends’ wedding…but then again the groom is a big foodie and he knows his friends are all good eaters…The 17th Annual Taste of Yountville was mainly located on Washington Street (where Bouchon Bistro & Bakery are) and on Madison St.—right off Highway 29. There were 13 restaurants and more than 20 wineries hosting the event. Admission was free but in order to sample the food/wine you need tickets. 1 ticket = $1. Each vendor for the most part did not exceed three tickets. It cost an additional $5 for wine tasting –you keep the wine glass. Since it was three hours before the wedding, I figured it would be wise to pass on the wine…
I started off with Hurley’s Restaurant’s rabbit potpie with Portobello mushrooms, carrots, turnips and potatoes. Yes, you heard that correctly, rabbit. My friends know that I won’t eat Bugs Bunny, but when you’re away, you are already out of your comfort zone, making you try something new? This does not mean that I will eat Bambi when I’m in Canada; I’ve already tried deer and it’s too gamey for me.
Since I’ve never had rabbit and the portion was tiny, I dared myself because there’s nothing more annoying when you hear people unwilling to try a new thing. Life is short. The rabbit surprisingly tasted like chicken. I was trying to tell myself that I was eating chicken until I got to the bottom where there was a nice fatty rabbit skin. Will have to check out Hurley’s $18.00 2-course lunch prefix next time around.
Bistro Jeanty’s Roasted Pork with Butternut Squash Puree was my next dish. It was delicious and my favorite! I will definitely make sure I dine at Bistro Jeantry the next time I’m up. Must make note to my companions that Happy Hours are from 3:30-6:30, Monday – Thurs and you get $1 oysters.
Mustard’s Grill’s potato chips with homemade sour cream dip were the next item. At first I didn’t want to waste my tickets on potato chips but then time was running out and I had to return to the hotel to change for the wedding. A colleague of mine had gone up to Napa last year and raved about Mustard’s Grills’ Portobello sandwich. In fact she said that sandwich was the best sandwich of 2009 and she’s engaged to chef and a meat eater. Hell, I figured why not try their potato chips? I ate rabbit.
OMG, I’ve never had potato chips like Mustard’s Grill, and what really sealed the deal was their homemade sour cream dip. The chips are slightly thicker than regular chips. It was just amazing. Actually the more I think about it, their potato chips beats Bistro Jeanty’s Roasted Pork
After sampling Bouchon Bistro, Cantinetta Piero was our last restaurant before returning to the hotel. Cantinetta Piero is located at the Hotel Luca and one of the new restaurants in Yountville. Cantinetta Piero’s Majale (braised pork cheek with Toscanelli Bean Salad) was okay. It was tender and not too terribly chewy.
The Gianduja Budino with Caramel and Meldon Salt was way too sweet. I don’t think it’s Cantinetta Piero’s fault. I think in general Budinos are too sweet for my taste buds. I only liked the rice chocolate balls in the dessert.
Can you believe that I only spent $12 at the Annual Taste of Yountville!? Not a bad deal when you’re in the land of the Michelin starred restaurants. I will definitely plan to come up for future annual tasting and try the wines!
Hurley's Restaurant & Bar
Address: 6518 Washington St, Yountville, CA 94599
Phone#: (707) 944-2345
Address: 6510 Washington St, Yountville, CA 94599
Phone#: (707) 944-0103
Address: 7399 St Helena Hwy, Yountville, CA 94558
Phone#: (707) 944-2424
Cantinetta Piero @ Hotel Luca
Address: 6774 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599