God's Word for Today

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Food

Y’all there are so many vineyards and wineries in Napa that you could never visit them all nor should you for fear of a DUI. After one stop for a tasting we found ourselves in Rutherford. You will see Rutherford right in the middle of the map below!


It was a quaint small town with a rather popular restaurant. There was a sign out front that read “No Corkage since 1994” Well inquiring minds had to know so upon leaving I asked the hostess what that meant. She informed me that they did not charge you to open a bottle of wine that you bring in yourself!

Well my mind went to spinning, so I pay for the wine, but you are going to charge me to open it! If they do not charge for this service at this establishment then this tells me that there are other establishment in Napa Valley that will make you pay if you want to open a bottle of wine that you have brought in.

No thank you I’ll wait until I get home and you can bring me a glass of water instead.


Here is a picture of my $14 dollar cheeseburger! YES $14 DOLLARS! and it did not even come with fries!

IMG_0052Cheeseburger  - Fresh ground chuck roast with Cheddar on a toasted house-made egg bun . . . . 14

I love how expensive restaurants just put the numerals beside the menu item to try to lessen the blow of the cost of the food. Oh you want a cheeseburger will it’s just 14….DOLLARS!!!!!!!!!

If you’re ever in Napa Valley and you want to pay way too much for a regular cheeseburger then by all means make a stop at Rutherford Grill otherwise wait and go to Steak N’ Shake when you get home. 

But here is what you were paying for.

The lovely outside dining area sitting beside a tranquil bamboo garden with a wonderful water feature.

Here is this very inviting statue of a rather large hairy pig sitting in a water fountain with a bird perched on it’s back about to give him a good peck in the head.

Oh! Can I please have a table near the warthog please! IMG_0049 IMG_0050

I will say that I did enjoy these wonderful rosemary bushes planted in containers by the front door. They took me on a trip down memory lane to my old house. It was to wonderful to run your hand over the bushes and then to get that strong piney scent wafting from your fingertips. The aroma lingered on my fingertips all afternoon.


At Fisherman’s Warf we fared a bit better.

These wonderful clam chowder bread bowls were very affordable. The hubs and I dove into these for a late lunch on Saturday. See the bay leaf sticking out of my bowl?


The clam chowder was creamy, with lots of celery, potatoes and chewy clams. Now let me say up front that I am not a huge fan of seafood. It just has never been one of my favorite things to eat. But this clam chowder was very good, but then anything surrounded by freshly baked sourdough is a winner in my book. The chowder was delicious but munching down on the tangy soft chewy sourdough was the real treat!

On Monday we went back to the Warf to take the bay tour and the Hubs spots a small shop off to his left. The intoxicating aroma pulls us over. Since we had just stopped for an afternoon pick me up of a cup of coffee from the San Francisco Coffee Roasting Company well these sweet delectable creations seemed to be calling out our name.


Y’all I watched them come off the conveyer belt fresh from the fryer and then the woman behind the counter asked did we want cinnamon sugar.

Well the only proper response was “YES!”

We strolled along Fisherman's Warf enjoying our coffee and these hot, fresh, sweet, sugary, cinnamony donuts. It was just like being in heaven, or real close I would imagine.

We stopped at Boudin’s and watched as their bakers behind the big picture window make these wonderful sourdough creations. The smell as amazing.


They use a sourdough starter that they have been nurturing since 1849!

There were lots of street vendors, you could get all assortment of crabs, shrimp, clams, oysters, the catch of the day…if you like seafood then this is the place to go.


On our last day in San Francisco after spending the  day at the Golden Gate Park (I am working on that post as well) we had reservations at the famous Cliff House.

 The Cliff HouseIMG_0409

You can see the restaurant in this photo below. The Cliff house is the white building on the far right of the picture.


If you want a very nice meal in very nice surroundings then The Cliff House is for you. The table cloths are white linen, the flowers are real and fresh, the candlelight is wonderful and the attention to detail is perfection.

IMG_0410As we sipped our wine we munched on warm sourdough bread served with real butter sprinkled with a brown spicy sea salt that was to die for. 


This was the view for our table.

We were in one of the best table, but then we are old fogies and our reservations were for 5:15.

We got to dine on fabulous food and watch the ocean gently fade as the sun went down. We even saw a whale off in the distance while we ate our diner.

Can life get any better than that?


IMG_0415 Now this meal warranted a picture. IMG_0417

Maple Leaf Duck - Two Ways —  roasted breast “a l’orange”

I had never had duck before. It was amazing! and no it did not taste like chicken. It was tender, and flavored with orange an the accompanying salad was dressed perfectly with a wonderful sweet and tangy orange sort of dressing with pine nuts and spicy arugula.

The only thing I did not like was the green purée of olive. It had some kind of French name but I can’t remember it (YUCK!). But then it’s ok to ask for them to hold the olives at the Olive Garden, but The Cliff House, I don't think so….

As you can tell I am not a huge fan of olive so i just enjoyed the picture it made on my plate.


After dinner we enjoyed a glass of Port with our desert. 


The Hubs and I shared a slice of Blackberry & Chocolate Ganache Cake with banyuls marinated berries-whipped cream & Graham’s Six Grapes Port.

Y’all I don't think I will ever be able to eat another piece of chocolate cake without wishing I had a glass of this port to go with it. The cake was OK but the port was fabulous!! The combination of the two together was the hit of the evening.

As I gave the desert menu the once over I noticed that several of the after dinner drink selections were…shall we say a bit out of our price range.

They had a few selections of brandy for $175.00 for one ounce and there was the Madera for $195.00 for 1/2 an ounce, I think that might be a sip and a half!

Needless to say we enjoyed our port at $8.00 a glass, my kind a price!!!

We left The Cliff House pleasantly satisfied knowing that we had just had a wonderful meal and were bringing our vacation to a close. We don't splurge very often on a dinner but every now and again it is worth it.

I would highly recommend it!

Well that does it for the food!

On to Golden Gate Park.

I have saved the best pictures for last. I will do a short post about Chinatown and some of the more unusual things we saw in San Francisco and then I will conclude with my post on Golden Gate Park.

Are y’all sick of my vacation yet?




Sassy Granny ... said...

I'll have a bread bowl w/chowder and a slice of Genache cake, please.

What a way to place memory markers on a trip!

Glad you had such a fabulous time. The west coast is truly filled with beauty & bounty.


SusanD said...

Oh what fun times and precious memories. Thank you so much for sharing your vacation with us. Blessings, SusanD

Nel said...

How fun... Thanks for sharing your travels with us! Enjoyable! Glad you had such a wonderful time.

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