Trinchero Family Estates

They now have a Hospitality Center to house Trinchero's internationally recognized Vine to Dine® wine and culinary education programs, the Hospitality Center features a Tuscan-style culinary center with indoor and outdoor kitchens and dining, vinegar solera, woodburning ovens, reserve tasting room and cellar, and culinary gardens.

The dinner table they setup in one of the barrel rooms.

The barrel room with French oak barrels. These barrels cost about $1,200 and are only used once.

Fermentation tanks.

Tasting room.

The new kitchen in the Hospitality Center. The kitchen opened two days before we arrived.

Myself in the kitchen. I'm really uncomfortable in any kitchen without my whites.

I thought this was cool, right outside the kitchen was a wall with hundreds of burning candles.

A view from outside the kitchen.

Summer Has Finally Arrived

Heirloom Tomato Salad
"Peach" and "Chocolate Cherry" tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, sea salt & cracked pepper, basil infused olive oil, balsamic reduction, micro sprouts.

When Cheese Becomes Cake

My experiment with savory "cheesecake" allowed us to infuse flavor yet maintain the integrity and creaminess of the cheese. With the right cheese and the correct ratios the flavor combination possibilities are endless.

Bleu "cheesecake" with mission figs.
Goat "cheesecake" with dried cherries.

Cross section of goat "cheesecake" with dried cherries.

Cheese Condiments
Candied kumquats, golden raisin & mustard seed relish, sweet & sour cherries.

"Cheesecakes" with rosemary crackers and quince paste

The Versatility of Crepes

Corn & Jalapeno Crepes
Sauteed oyster mushrooms with spinach and goat cheese. Balsamic reduction, fresh chives and chive flowers.

Smoked Duck Crepes
Fresh corn, manchego cheese, green chiles, radish sprouts

Taylor's Automatic Refresher

Taylor's Automatic Refresher has been a fixture in the Napa Valley since 1949. This burger joint is the forerunner to the gourmet burger palaces popping up across the country. Taylor's has garnered as much press as the multi-starred fine dining restaurants in the valley. They've been featured in USA Today, Wine Enthusiast, The New York Times, Bon Appetit, Gourmet, Travel & Leisure, Food & Wine, and many many more.

The cheese burger was ethereal. Sitting at a picnic table in St. Helena in the spring with a hot cheesy burger is a thing of beauty. And of course, being in wine country they have a great selection of wine.

At peak times the line can get very long, business is so good they prohibit buses from stopping there.

Farallon - San Francisco

Chef Mark Franz opened Farallon in June 1997 in partnership with designer and restaurateur Pat Kuleto. Surrounded by an interior reminiscent of the lost City of Atlantis, Franz serves his sophisticated interpretation of "Coastal Cuisine." Nominated by the James Beard Foundation as one of the best restaurants in the nation, Farallon was also chosen as one of the best newcomers in the country by national magazines such as Esquire, Bon Appetit and Food & Wine.

Franz was awarded the "Chef of the Decade" award in 2002 by the California Culinary Academy and Farallon received the prestigious DiRona Award the same year. Farallon continues to be one of the highest rated and most popular seafood restaurants in San Francisco.

petite celery salad, caper berries, crimson beet emulsion

endive marmalade, toasted almonds, meyer lemon vinaigrette

beef short rib ravioli, toasted walnuts, cherry Cognac jus

Iacopi Farms English peas, house made gnocchi, wild mushroom fondue

kumquat marmalade, cream cheese ice cream,candied pecans

brown butter streusel, sweet Meyer lemon ricotta cream, hibiscus strawberry rhubarb compote

Vibrant Tuna

This is one of the crispest, cleanest tuna preparations we've ever developed. The base is a crisp-spicy cucumber &Thai green curry gelee.

Hawaiian Tuna Crudo
Cucumber-Thai green curry gelee, serrano chiles, candied kumquats, cilantro, sea salt and crystallized ginger.