A quick overnight to Napa, CA

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love2bake
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2014/05/23 13:38:56 (permalink)

A quick overnight to Napa, CA

I went to Napa to see blues/rock legend Gregg Allman and hit a few food stops.
 
Oxbow Market, on the other side of the river from downtown Napa, is a fun collection of food places with something for everyone--Italian, Mexican food, Hog Island Oysters, Gott's Roadside, etc.  I suffered from paralysis by analysis and just got ice cream at Three Twins.  I got a scoop of the Sergio Romo Mexican Chocolate, and one of chocolate malt.  Both very very good (sorry--no pic!).
 
I headed to Sweetie Pies in downtown Napa--a place that's been on my bookmark list for a while.  They seemed to have more cakes and cookies than pies, but I did get a "small" strawberry rhubarb pie to go:

 
The filling was well balanced from a sweet and tart standpoint.  There was too much crust for my taste, but that's often a risk with small versions.  Here's a closeup of the filling:

 
For something savory I went to Grace's Table in downtown, listed as American on Yelp, it's also got South American, Mexican, etc.  Here's their Argentine empanada with chimichurri sauce.  The filling had beef, currants, olives, and hard-cooked egg.

 Here's an interior shot.  The empanada itself was delicious.

 
Grace's Table is famous for their cornbread with honey lavender butter.  I'm not much of a fan of lavender, as it reminds me of soap, but this mixture went well with the cornbread.  Underneath that crunchy top crust, the cornbread was almost pudding-like.  Unusual, but not in a bad way.

 
Late lunch turned out to be dinner for me, so here are a couple of concert shots:

 

 
In the morning I went back to Oxbow for the best English muffins I've ever had.  These are seriously wonderful, and you can get them at the Model Bakery.  They freeze well, too. 

 
That's it!  I told you it was quick. 
post edited by love2bake - 2014/05/24 15:36:01
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    ScreamingChicken
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/23 13:46:00 (permalink)
    Those English muffins look nothing like the storebought variety!
     
    An Allman playing a hoity-toity venue like Napa...what's this world coming to?!?!?
    post edited by ScreamingChicken - 2014/05/23 13:47:01
    #2
    leethebard
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/23 14:30:51 (permalink)
    What great looking food!!!!
    #3
    mar52
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/23 15:16:15 (permalink)
    I want that empanada.  I'll leave you Gregg Allman.
     
    Great photos.  I've never seen English Muffins that didn't come out of a package.  I want many.
    #4
    pnwchef
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/23 16:00:52 (permalink)
    L2B, looks like a great time!.....everything looks wonderful......would you post a pic of the English muffin after you toast it ???......thxs for the report and pics...............pnwc
    #5
    FriedClamFanatic
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/23 22:14:57 (permalink)
    Those English muffins alone has made me add Napa to my next trip to Marin Cty....and if I can get to Santa Rosa for the Portuguese bakery/deli (with linguica!), then it will be a perfect trip!
    #6
    love2bake
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/23 23:10:53 (permalink)
    FCF - The English muffins are definitely worth a drive for!  They can run out early in the day, though, and when I arrived on Thursday afternoon around 2pm I didn't see any in the case.  The Model Bakery has a location in St. Helena as well, FYI--that's where I first had them.
     
    pnw - my stash of muffins is already in the freezer, but I found/"borrowed" a photo online that shows the interior pretty well.  They're really quite light.

     
    Screaming - it WAS fancy digs!  At least it looked fancy, but I must say, the place stank--not sure if it was a plumbing issue or what, but it smelled like pee. " /> Ick.
     
    lee - You probably know this, but there's so much good food in Napa, it's not hard to find something wonderful!  Making decisions is the hard part.  I felt like a pinball at the Oxbow Market, bouncing from menu to menu at all of the food stops inside. 
     
    Mar - I'd leave Gregg alone, too.  He has definitely seen better days and was not doing well.  Still, I was glad to see a legend!  The empanada was very good--something was odd about the sauce, but no biggie--it didn't need it.
    post edited by love2bake - 2014/05/23 23:14:51
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    BackRhodes
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/23 23:12:14 (permalink)
    ScreamingChicken
    An Allman playing a hoity-toity venue like Napa...what's this world coming to?!?!?

    Napa is not nearly as "hoity-toity" as St Helena...
     
    I wonder if the Buttercream Bakery and Partricks Ice Cream are still in downtown Napa...those places are / were the very best...worth driving 30 miles each way from Calistoga...
     
    #8
    BackRhodes
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/23 23:15:29 (permalink)
    FriedClamFanatic
    and if I can get to Santa Rosa for the Portuguese bakery/deli (with linguica!), then it will be a perfect trip!


    If you like authentic tacos, try Pepe's in Santa Rosa...Sebastopol Ave 1  or 2 blocks east of Stony Point Rd, south side of the street...
    #9
    EdSails
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/24 04:12:41 (permalink)
    L2B, another great report. I can just taste that rhubarb pie.......
     
    I'd wondered about the Allman tour, it's going to come to the Coach House in SJC. I first saw Gregg Allman at The FDorum when brother Duane was alive, the second time at the Hollywood Bowl while Berry Oakley was still alive. I just never expected a Gregg Allman show to come anywhere close to those Allman Bros. shows I saw. 
    #10
    love2bake
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/24 10:50:54 (permalink)
    What with several health issues, a lawsuit, and general aging, it's no wonder the show was a little weak.  I wouldn't be surprised if even the venue had a subduing effect--he might have done great at the Santa Cruz outdoor event on this tour.  I do wish I'd have seen them when Duane was with the band--they played all over when I was living in NC, but I never went.  
    #11
    Turtle66
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/24 13:21:32 (permalink)
    The food looks Yummy! Especially the Empanada 
    #12
    The Travelin Man
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/29 16:15:10 (permalink)
    I was in Napa a few weeks ago. I think we went to a place called "Downtown Joe's?" It was pretty good - and, as mentioned above, not nearly as "hoity-toity" as my preconceived notions.
     
    We tried to go to Sweetie Pies, but as some of you might have guessed, they were closed. 
     
    Yeah.
    #13
    wanderingjew
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/05/29 19:24:29 (permalink)
    We might be heading to Napa (or Sonoma) next year. It certainly looks like you went to some solid places.
    #14
    BackRhodes
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/07/06 13:45:30 (permalink)
    Sad news:  Partrick's Ice Cream is no longer in Napa
     
    Good News: Buttercream Bakery IS still in Napa (I love their butterhorns)  707-255-6700 on 4th street
     
    For folks going to Napa, just south of the jail is the "old town" neighborhood with many classic Victorian houses, worth taking a look...
     
    I spent MANY years in upper Napa County, and I'm sure if I went back there (a 3 hour drive) I'd find many, many changes, compared to how life was in the 1970's...
     
    Although still quaint, Calistoga is no longer the self sufficient town it used to be: the bakery, shoe repairman, clothes store, theater, and auto parts are all gone, replaced by businesses that are tourist oriented. It's sad to see a town change like that, when it no longer caters to the local population...
     
    St Helena way long ago became a tourist oriented town...
     
    I don't know IF they still exist, but the Yountville Saloon & the Yountville Diner were good places a few decades ago.
     
    Martinelli's Smokehouse used to be in St Helena, and used old grapevine stumps to fire an indirect heat brick smoker, and while it's now called something else, there is a possibility the brick smoker still exists (Pope Street 100' east of Main St / Hwy 29), downtown St Helena  (pronounced Saint Heh-LEE-Nah)
    #15
    Twinwillow
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/07/06 16:24:29 (permalink)
    Thank you. A solid report showing gorgeous foods!
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    ChiTownDiner
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/07/06 18:41:29 (permalink)
    L2B - Great stuff...I'll see your English muffin and pie and raise you 2 scoops!
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    love2bake
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    Re:A quick overnight to Napa, CA 2014/07/06 22:44:07 (permalink)
    CTD - I'll see you those two scoops!!  Three Twins makes some delicious ice cream. 
     
    WJ and others who might come to this area:  There are so many great choices throughout Napa Valley--this trip was only to Napa itself.  Also in Napa is one of my favorites--Mustards Grill--which has been there for 30 years (pretty much a classic in an area with a huge turnover in restaurants).  Everything I've had there has been delicious, including a lovely, spiky, lemon-lime meringue pie.  Mustards is pricey, though, so be prepared if you go!  http://mustardsgrill.com
    #18
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