Changes are afoot at Napa Valley's three Michelin-star Restaurant at Meadowood: a redesign by architect Howard Backen and craftsman Michael Capp resulted in an expanded bar area, a new (larger) private dining room and new bathrooms. The new look features limestone, reclaimed wood (from a 100-year-old bridge in British Columbia, naturally), concrete/wood floors and "suspended custom ceramic tiles...positioned to add interest to the overhead space." The old private dining room has been turned into a wine cellar.
And the changes are not only aesthetic: chef Christopher Kostow has added a $20 snack program to the bar alongside wines by the glass as well as cocktails. For those who are a little hungrier but still not feeling the full tasting menu, a $90 three-course menu is available in the bar as well. And Kostow's not the only one paring down bar menus: over in San Francisco, Josh Skenes recently introduced a shorter, $88 menu in his salon area at Saison. Fallout from the tasting menu backlash, perhaps? Below, a press release.
The Restaurant at Meadowood Debuts New Features for 2013
ST. HELENA, Calif. – March 4, 2013 – The Restaurant at Meadowood has several new features to offer guests in 2013. The new reveals include: a sheltered entry and expanded bar; a private dining room seating up to twelve guests; an interior wine cellar; additional custom-designed furnishings and art pieces; and new restrooms.
On the inspiration behind the recent additions, Restaurant Director Nathaniel Dorn says, "The projects we completed during the last couple of months were primarily designed to enhance our guests' comfort, enjoyment and sense of discovery. We delved deeper into our relationships with a few of our existing artisans and craftsmen and forged several exciting new partnerships as well."
The new entry and expanded bar area, designed by noted architect Howard Backen, features a twenty-foot beamed ceiling, fieldstone walls, two fireplaces, large windows and a polished concrete-and-wood floor. Craftsman Michael Capp worked with Dorn to execute his designs for new dining tables for both The Restaurant dining room and the bar. The table tops are crafted of limestone while the bases feature cast iron steel and 100-year-old wood salvaged from a bridge in British Columbia. Suspended custom ceramic tiles by local artist Richard Carter add warmth and texture to the room and are positioned to add interest to the overhead space. Fabric colors feature shades of gray and subtle pin striping in keeping with the accents in the dining room.
In addition to the beautiful new space with seating for 18, guests will also find snacks from Chef Christopher Kostow and The Restaurant at Meadowood culinary team offered at $20 per person. The bar will be open Monday through Saturday evenings from 5:00 p.m. to midnight with wines available by the glass or bottle and an array of traditional and signature cocktails.
Another new culinary debut occurs at the actual bar itself, where guests will now be able to enjoy a three-course menu each evening priced at $90 per person. The menu will change nightly and guests are encouraged to call ahead to reserve space as seats at the bar are limited. "This new three-course menu was largely inspired by the members of our local community who enjoy coming into The Restaurant mid-week," says Dorn. "We have a good many vintners, for example, who've told us they'd like to come into The Restaurant at the end of the day for a lighter meal and some good conversation. So, we've created that opportunity for them."
The new private dining room was created in response to the growing number of larger parties inquiring about dining in The Restaurant. "Increasingly," says Dorn, "we have guests who want to hold special celebrations in The Restaurant. This space, which overlooks a small, private garden, will be perfect for gatherings of friends or family members celebrating special occasions. It's also ideal for members of our local vintner community wishing to host private dinners featuring their wines alongside Christopher's menus."
Finally, in the dining room, wine enthusiasts are likely to delight in the new Thomas Warner-designed wine cellar. Crafted entirely of rich walnut the cellar fills the space of the original four-seat private dining room. Says Dorn, "We're excited to have our extensive wine collection located in the dining room where it will be close at hand for both our staff and our guests."
For more information on The Restaurant at Meadowood or to reserve a table, visit www.therestaurantatmeadowood.com. To reserve seating at the bar or to inquire about the private dining room, call 707-967-1205.