The veggie stack from Dierk’s Parkside. Photo courtesy of Heather Irwin.
There’s good news and there’s, well, pretty good news about the opening of ~DIERK’S MIDTOWN CAFE~ (the offshoot of the brunch-tacular Dierk’s Parkside): The veggie stack is back. If you time it right you can get still-warm pie, and if you time it wrong there’s still really good cold pie—or maybe cake. For fans of Mark Dierkhising’s original Santa Rosa eatery, the recently opened Midtown Cafe is familiar territory, with additions like a spicy Asian soba salad with harissa dressing, an exotic red rice salad with ginger-soy dressing that’s healthy and refreshing, the produce-friendly Talbot sandwich with vegetarian sausage, and the much-loved grilled vegetable stack (which I have been dreaming of for days) with a tower of eggplant, tomatoes, spinach, and onions bathed in saffron tomato sauce. With a blob of goat cheese ever so slowly melting on top. There are, of course, plenty of bacony, chicken-fried-steaky bits as well. With both naughty and nice dishes served all day (from 7am to 3pm) you can have your cake and five servings of veggies too.1422 Fourth St. at St. Helena, Santa Rosa, 707-545-2233.
The open sign is on: ~CHALKBOARD~ started serving dinner this week at the former Cyrus space in Healdsburg. BiteClub is headed up this weekend for a full report, but early diners have given a thumbs-up on the food. 29 North St. at Healdsburg, Healdsburg, 707-473-8030.
In Napa, ~EMPIRE RESTAURANT~ is slated to open on May 18. The Andaz Hotel restaurant will focus on small plates, bourbon cocktails, and late-night eats. 1400 First St. at Franklin, Napa.
Also slated to open soon is ~NAPA VALLEY BISTRO~, which replaces Neela’s Indian restaurant. The venture is a collaboration of former Silverado Brewing Company and Market St. Helena chefs. 975 Clinton Ave. at Main, Napa.