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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

California Dreaming

We've been back for a week but if feels like a year. I miss California! The sun, the laid-back, permanent vacation vibe, and of course, the FOOD. I proved what a weak sauce food blogger I am by refusing to bring my camera into the French Laundry, but here are some other pics of our trip.This is the view from our sun deck off the hotel room in Napa Valley. I can now highly recommend the Auberge du Soleil to anyone looking for an extremely luxurious, pampering Napa getaway. At one point, I seriously considered chaining myself to a wicker poolside chaise and refusing to leave. Ever. I have a pic of Stinger in all his early-morning glory sitting at our little outdoor table surveying the gory remains of our room service breakfast, but I'm too good a wife to ever think of posting it. Of course I am. So here, instead, is a shot of the pool area where we spent a fruitful, relaxing, (and, for Stinger, lobsterfying) afternoon.You can see why Stinger stayed out too long. It was enchanting! And the pool boys would bring you lovely cocktails and chilled gazpacho and stuff. Win!
For dinner that night, we met our friend Enrique at Go Fish!, a seafood restaurant run by the Queen of Napa Valley Cookery, Cindy Pawlcyn (whom you might recognize if you've been watching Top Chef: Masters!) The menu was fun, full of classics like Shrimp and Crab Louie (the salad I eventually settled on, which was a huge mass of fresh, crsip lettuce, sweet seafood, and the best thousand island dressing ever) and Lobster Mac & Cheese. But the best part was the sushi. Above is the extensive sushi bar, which shared space with a raw bar laden with an enormous variety of oysters, clams, mussels, etc.
We had a Dragon Roll (eel and avocado wrapped around shrimp tempura) and a Spicy Crispy Roll (yellowtail, scallion, tobiko, and tempura flakes with a spicy mayonnaise.) It was honestly some of the best sushi I've ever had--and I went through a phase where sushi was all I wanted to eat. Seriously, on Senior Skip Day in high school, while everyone else was up at the lake getting drunk and skinny dipping, my best friend and I drove an hour to the next town for sushi.

For the rest of the trip we stayed with friends, so these first couple of nights were our little mini-vacation-within-a-vacation. It was Stinger's 30th, we planned it for a year, and we went all out. Stay tuned for the rest of the trip later this week!


Now you got me California Dreaming and hungry.

Seriously. I'm now craving sushi like you wouldn't believe. What a great place!

It was awesome. I loved Cindy on TC:M, and I'd rec Go Fish to anyone. Was fab!

I loooooved Go Fish when Mom and I ate there on our last trip. I had the best chirashi I have ever had in my entire life. Yum.

Miles & Hall stayed at Auberge last week, BTW!

WHAT? We are such ships passing in the night.

Nice! I've said it before, can I have your life??

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