Monday, May 2, 2011

Redd - A Simple Elegant Lunch (Yountville, CA)


One of the benefits of having your hometown being a 30 minutes drive to the Napa Valley is the access to all the fine dining close by. However, it's not a luxury that I've enjoyed until recently. On a recent trip up (in fact, it was my lunch before my dinner at Bottega), my friends and I decided to catch an early lunch there before going to the vineyards for wine tasting.


I loved the dining room at Redd. It's so clean and open. I wish I had taken a shot of the space. Since we knew we had a heavy dinner in a matter of hours, we decided to go light and ordered family style.

Bread Service
Bread Service

It's hard to go wrong with some warm crusty bread. Though I had to make sure I leave plenty of room for the dishes coming up.

Smoked Salmon Panini
Corn Soup
Corn Soup - smoked salmon panini

As a starter, we went with a cream corn soup. The texture was smooth and creamy. It was quite delicious. The accompanied smoked salmon panini was tasty by itself and worked well with the corn soup. The soup was the definite star here. It was a bowl I wished I had all to myself.

Tasting of Cold Foie Gras Preparation
Tasting of Cold Foie Gras Preparation
Tasting of Cold Foie Gras Preparation - stone fruit, pistachios, brioche

This dish was recommended by Julian, though I doubt I would have bypassed anything with the words "foie gras" on the menu.The trio of foie gras were all quite nice. It was rich, but yet delicate at the same time. I'd recommend this as a starter to anyone visiting Redd. Which one was my favorite you ask? The foie gras with the pistachios was quite nice. I enjoyed the flavors of the foie gras and pistachio together.

Braised Beef Short Ribs
Braised Beef Short Ribs - bacon, cipollini onions, fingerling potatoes, red wine jus

Short rib might be an ingredient that's a bit too played out these days, but that doesn't mean this dish was any less delicious. It was fork tender good. I loved the red wine jus that went with the short ribs.

John Dory
John Dory
John Dory - creamy jasmine rice, clams, chorizo, saffron curry nage

Even though the menu states this dish as John Dory, we were told that they were out of that particular fish, and will be replacing it with halibut (or at least I think it was halibut). Since we also enjoyed the replacement ingredient, we gave her the green light with the order. The fish was cooked nicely, tender and moist. I enjoyed the rice bathed in clams and chorizo. It was actually surprisingly light. Of the savories, this was my favorite of the day.

Crispy Duck Confit
Crispy Duck Confit - lentils, foie gras meatballs, crispy spaetzle

Duck confit AND foie gras meatballs? Wow, on the menu it sounded like a winner to me. Although I enjoyed this duck confit, I preferred the version served at Bottega.  I wished the foie gras meatball had more of a foie gras flavor to them. With that said, it's still a solid preparation of duck confit.

Mango and Coconut Sorbets
Mango and Coconut Sorbets - pineapple, lime granite

Now, it's onto dessert. I was actually more intrigued with the dessert menu coming in as I heard the pastry chef Nicole Plue was a recent James Beard award winner. We started off with the duo of sorbet with pineapple and lime granite. What can I say? Cool and refreshing. A much needed dessert after the savory courses.

Vanilla Bean Fontainebleu
Vanilla Bean Fontainebleu - apricot verbena ice, corn fritters

The vanilla fontainebleu was quite nice with the apricot verbena ice. It had a nice smooth yogurt texture to it. I'm not sure if the corn fritters were necessary, though since I'm not too keen on fried desserts, it might be more of a bias on my part. Though, with that said, I liked this.

Butterscotch Sundae
Butterscotch Sundae
Butterscotch Sundae - vanilla rum ice cream, salted butter galette

Let's close this post on the best thing I had at Redd on that particular afternoon, the butterscotch sundae. I had thought the butterscotch budino at Mozza was good, but this one beats it. I loved the sweet and salty flavors, the texture of the caramel corn, the cool vanilla ice cream. The dessert was clean, simple, and left a great impression for me at the end of our meal.


Everything about Redd just screams simple and clean, yet it's quite elegant. The food and service was great, and the space itself I adored. Whether eating indoors or outdoor at its patio, Redd is definitely a restaurant that should not be missed if you find yourself in the Napa Valley. Unlike some of its neighboring restaurants, the price point is fair and it menu is accessible to most of the general public. I can't wait to make a return visit back to Redd. Until then, it's off to the vineyards!

Napa Valley

6480 Washington St
Yountville, CA 94599-1294
(707) 944-2222


Diana said...

I loved my lunch at Redd too - the John Dory and butterscotch sundae were the highlights for me too! Thanks again for recommending it to me before my parents and I went!

Greg said...

Gorgeous. You're so lucky to live in NoCal. I kept scrolling back to that bread! Beautiful pictures. said...

Mango coconut sorbet! Want some NOW :D

weezermonkey said...


bagnatic said...

i would have overstuffed myself with bread....good thing you controlled yourself! the food looks divine.

Gastronomer said...

I will definitely lunch at Redd the next time I'm hanging in the Valley! Or maybe I'll just stop by for the butterscotch sundae. Yum!!

Bonnibella said...

Redd is the best place for lunch in Napa area. I have to try the butterscotch if you think it's better than mozza's budino!

Kung Food Panda said...

Diana: Great minds think alike. I'm glad you enjoyed it :)

Greg: Thanks! I actually like in LA, but is from Nor Cal, so I get to go back fairly often.

Chef Pandita: Me too!

WM: Wowza indeed!

Kung Food Panda said...

Amy: I had to also save room for my dinner at Bottega. I had to control myself.

Cathy: Please do, at least go for the dessert!

Bonni: I really enjoyed it, but I might need to try both back to back to make sure i'm right.

Anna A. said...

If I ate the John Dory I would want to cleans my face with all that foam as well. Still, YUM! Desserts look refreshing as well.

Kung Food Panda said...

Anna: You should check it out when you go back home to the Bay!