The restaurant scene is roaring back to life in the South Bay and a common theme among them is restaurants featuring a unique bar program paired to a dining menu equal in creativity. While the concept of bringing together your favorite bar with gourmet bar bites is no new feat, here are 15 top-notch gastropubs in the South Bay.
Jerry James Stone
Car and technology writer for Discovery Channel and the producer and main recipe developer for TreeHugger's Green Wine Guide. I also contribute regularly to MAKE magazine. You can also find my work at The Atlantic, Digg.com and Fodor's Travel Guides.
I studied Computer Engineering at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, CA. During my time there I was a DJ at the campus radio station KCPR and I also wrote for the campus paper, Mustang Daily.
I am currently launching a social media startup called Trak.ly
Jerry James Stone's Latest Posts
Popsicles are quite possibly my new favorite thing to make. I simply love how creative you can be with them. Seriously, there are no limits. I’ve used tea, cake, booze, you name it…and I have made a popsicle with it. I had planned for these figs be soaked in bourbon but they were so fresh and bursting with flavor, that it broke my heart just to freeze them. I didn’t want anything else to alter their taste. So I refrained and I am glad I did. These pops are scrumptious!
You’d pretty much have to be living under a rock to not be aware of Outside Lands this weekend. But sorry, unlike previous years, there are no last minute tickets to nab. So if you are one of the lucky few thousand who is actually going, the festival has a few new attractions worth investigating. But the one I’ve really looking forward to is Beer Lands!
Want some tasty and affordable wines for your next meal, event or drunken binge. Here are 6 affordable ones from the Wine Riot event. Wine Riot is the hipster version of wine tasting. Bread and cheese has been replaced with…more bread and cheese, but in the shape of pizza.
The rustic Italian restaurant is located at 400 West Spain Street in Sonoma, just a short walk from the heart of Sonoma Square (and the girl and the fig). They are closing their doors because Darius Anderson, owner of Ramekins Culinary School and Event Center next door to ESTATE, purchased the building and will be taking over the property October 1st. There are no current plans to relocate the restaurant.
If you enjoyed the Crispy Artichoke Chip recipe I posted earlier this week, then I am about to blow your mind. While that recipe can very well stand on its own, it was really meant as a garnish for this one. Seriously, this is the dish for the artichoke connoisseur. By braising the artichokes, Chef John Toulze really showcases the earthy and sweet flavors found in baby artichokes. And somewhat surprisingly, the artichoke chips are just as flavorful but also very light and airy.
I made this heavenly snack with Sondra Bernstein and her business partner Chef John Toulze when we hung out for the day back in May. I had been touring California, and both John and Sondra were generous enough to spend some time with me. Not only did I get to tour their biodynamic farm, but I also got to cook with John, partake in some of their signature cocktails like this Lavender Mojito all while charging my borrowed Chevy Volt!
In the heart of Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley, nestled between grapevines and the area’s rolling foothills, is the modern yet rustic Medlock Ames Tasting Room and Alexander Valley Bar. The tasting room is the only place in town where you can enjoy all of the lovely wines made by Medlock Ames just up the road at their Bell Mountain ranch. And just as it’s making its last call, the bar next door starts serving up fresh, garden-inspired cocktails using ingredients grown at that very location.
Called “Liquid Pie,” this cocktail is a combination of bourbon, berries and beer. The bourbon provides subtle flavors of vanilla and caramel while the Pilsner adds some crust-like notes to the mix. And of course, the fresh berries bring it all home. You’ll swear it tastes like pie!
Tucked away along the hillside of Dry Creek Valley, in the sleepy little town of Healdsburg, is a century-old mansion called Madrona Manor. Built in 1881, this nationally-registered Victorian estate was once just a weekend getaway for a very well-to-do banker. Today, it’s an inn with a one star Michelin-rated restaurant. The grounds at Madrona Manor–as one would expect–are immaculate. It is a mansion after all. Tulips, roses, annuals and perennials, leave the eight-acre estate billowing with floral delights. But my favorite part is the property’s organic kitchen garden.
A culinary staple of Sonoma County is Sondra Bernstein’s the girl & the fig, which is why it was my pleasure to spend the day farming, cooking and eating with the self-proclaimed “fig girl” herself. This lovely and fresh Lavender Mojito is just one of the many cocktails we made using biodynamically farmed ingredients from their plot at Imagery Estate Winery, located in Glen Ellen.
Located in Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley is one of my favorite California wineries, Medlock Ames. They make some of the best wines you’ll ever taste. But what makes them really special is their commitment to quality and sustainability which extends beyond the production of great wine. This Lavender Splash Cocktail is just one example of that commitment. It’s made with lavender organically grown at the Medlock Ames Tasting Room.
I love fresh squeezed juice. It’s one of Sunday’s little pleasures. But every time I make it, I am a bit annoyed by all the left over peels. In fact, I feel this way anytime I eat or use citrus fruit in a recipe. And while I haven’t gone full-on freegan (or even tried it), candying citrus peels seems like a reasonable compromise. Right?
I’m a huge fan of any recipe that uses the entire fruit or vegetable. Especially when it’s this pretty! You know, regular cauliflower just doesn’t photograph as well. The purple pops! It’s also quite tasty and the perfect alternative if you love mashed potatoes but want to eat more vegetables.