Napa Valley

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ShermansTravel experts know where to find the best meal in town at the best price. Our restaurant reviews sift through the mountains of menus to highlight neighborhood gastronomic institutions and up-and-coming foodie hotspots – not to mention where to go for affordable, dependable fare complemented by a charming atmosphere.

Top Restaurants in Napa Valley

Bouchon

Cheaper, a bit more casual, and easier to get into than French Laundry, Thomas Keller’s second Napa Valley restaurant, with a counterpart at the Time Warner Center in New York, boasts French bistro fare like steak frites, quiche, boudin noir, and profiteroles.

6534 Washington St., CA, 707-944-8037, www.bouchonbistro.com
Tags: expensive | notable chef | french | jim's pick

Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen

Come for delicious meals, a comfortably elegant atmosphere, and great prices. Sit on the patio and order any fresh, fish-of-the-day entrée (they’re all wonderful). Adventurous diners should try the quail or duck, but there are also plenty of basic dishes like the slow-smoked pork chop.

1327 Railroad Ave., CA, 707-963-1200, www.cindysbackstreetkitchen.com
Tags: moderate | seafood | great value | patio | new american

French Laundry

If it weren't surrounded by vineyards and full of Michelin-starred restaurants, Yountville could be mistaken for a small town in the Midwest. Here you'll find Thomas Keller’s legendary, three-Michelin-starred French Laundry, for which you still have to make reservations months in advance, unless your concierge or innkeeper engages in the local dirty secret of passing on an unused reservation to you. But this holy grail of wine country dining, with its nine-course tasting menu (the only choice, though there is a vegetarian option), is totally worth it. 2008 Smart Luxury Award winner

6640 Washington St., CA, 707-944-2380, www.frenchlaundry.com
Tags: expensive | notable chef | editor pick | smart splurge | smart luxury winner | french | jim's pick

Mustards Grill

Enjoy wonderful California cuisine at reasonable prices. The onion rings are the signature starter, but the corn tamales, crab cakes, and calamari are all wonderful. For dinner, Mongolian pork chops are amazing and the Truckstop Deluxe is a meat-lover’s dream.

7399 St. Helena Hwy., CA, 707-944-2424, www.mustardsgrill.com
Tags: family | moderate | american | comfort food

Press

Dine on steak, lamb, chicken, or fish prepared in a wood-burning grill and served on fine linens. Prices are not outrageous by big-city standards, but the bar menu is cheaper and features delicious comfort food.

587 St. Helena Hwy., CA, 707-967-0550, www.presssthelena.com
Tags: family | expensive | comfort food

Taylor's Automatic Refresher

Tourists and locals line up for blocks to try Taylor’s juicy burgers and tasty sandwiches. Veggie, chicken, and fish options are available, but a meal isn’t complete without crispy onion rings, salty fries, and a creamy shake.

933 Main St., CA, 707-963-3486, www.taylorsrefresher.com
Tags: family | budget | editor pick | local favorite

Wine Spectator Greystone Restaurant

Explore the castle-like grounds of the Culinary Institute of America before dining at the cooking school’s best restaurant. The menu of local, seasonal ingredients changes daily. Begin with a small-bites plate before moving on to the tempting and accessible main dishes.

2555 Main St., CA, 707-967-1010, www.ciachef.edu/restaurants
Tags: expensive | notable wine list

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