April 27, 2012

April 27, 2012
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ESTATE’s baked eggs en cocotte with house-cured prosciutto; photo courtesy of ESTATE.

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étoile’s dramatic barrel-inspired roof leaves no doubt where you are; photo by Eric Wolfinger.

By 707 correspondent, Deirdre Bourdet.

What mom doesn’t love to have someone else cook for her? Most restaurants in wine country stay open on Mother’s Day for brunch, but here are a few top picks offering particularly special opportunities to spoil your mom on Sunday May 13th.

~LA TOQUE~ only serves Sunday brunch once a year, and Mother’s Day is that once. This year the restaurant shows off the new spring produce from its Napa gardens with a three-course prix-fixe menu that includes a boozy aperitif, basket of warm cinnamon churros, and plenty of choices at each stage of the game. Think spring veggie “soupe au pistou” with wild nettles, or burrata with olio nuovo, mint, and fleur de sel to start; followed by lobster omelet with leeks, potato, Fontina cheese, and lobster hollandaise, or grilled New York strip steak, crispy halibut, crab cakes, or even a vegetarian “short stack” of portobello mushrooms with béarnaise. Dessert options include the kitchen’s beloved Gâteau Concorde au Chocolat, as well as a lemon crêpe brûlée with blood orange-brown butter sauce. Total cost for the prix-fixe is $65 per person (plus optional wine pairing on two courses for an extra $24), though the under-21 types can get everything but the booze for $48. Call the restaurant or go online for reservations. 1314 McKinstry St. at Soscol Ave., Napa, 707-257-5157.

For mothers with an Italian bent—or those who just love their salami—~ESTATE~ in Sonoma is the place to hit. This year the three-course Mother’s Day brunch menu is chock-full of housemade MANO FORMATE charcuterie, from the aperitivo selection of salumi that kicks things off, through the prosciutto that tops the baked eggs with leeks and truffle crema, all the way to the bacon panino with arugula, Fontina, and roasted red bell pepper aioli. Come to mamma. Three courses are $32, and you can add a glass of prosecco, mimosa, bellini, or other creative selection from the restaurant’s famed Prosecco Bar for an astoundingly low $3. Check the website for the full menu of options. 400 W. Spain St. at 4th St. W., Sonoma, 707-933-3663.

Due to local land use restrictions, Napa Valley has only one restaurant that’s actually in a winery—but that one is more than worthy. Michelin-starred ~ÉTOILE~ is located at Domaine Chandon in Yountville, just a few short minutes from downtown. Its charming young chef Perry Hoffman recently won Food & Wine’s award for The People’s Best New Chef in California, working with the restaurant’s five acres of Carneros gardens, foraged wild products just outside his kitchen door, and of course the impressive variety of Chandon family wines at his fingertips. This year, Hoffman’s Mother’s Day brunch features an ultra-seasonal selection of goodies, like a chilled fennel soup with smoked trout, brioche, and fiddlehead ferns; Delta asparagus salad with prosciutto di Parma, sous vide egg, and rhubarb; fettuccine with spring green garlic, Maine lobster, garden herbs, and preserved lemon; halibut with ramps, tempura squash blossom, hearts of palm, and bacon lardons; and a beef tenderloin with potato terrine, English peas and leaves, and roasted mushrooms. The three-course tasting menu is $75, plus $35 for optional wine pairings. There is also, of course, the Swedish-built caviar cart to take things to an 11…. 1 California Dr. at Solano Ave., Yountville, 888-242-6366, option 2.

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