Last weekend we dined for the second time at JoLe Restaurant (Calistoga). Both times it has been great. It’s currently one of our favorite Napa Valley restaurants and certainly ranks as one of the best up Calistoga way.
Chicken Livers with medjool dates and Point Reyes blue cheese ($9)
Crispy Pork Belly with quince, ginger, soy & apple cider ($13)
Half Roasted Cornish Hen with collard greens and corn bread stuffing ($15)
Duck Confit with herb spaetzle and huckleberry coulis ($15)
Service started off sputtering but rapidly improved. Our table wasn’t ready until about 20 minutes after our reservation and then after we were seated, it took a an uncomfortable, unusual period before being greeted by our server and then for him to return to take our order. I think there may have been some confusion on who we “belonged” to. Anyway, they caught up and we were treated in a professional and friendly manner for the rest of the evening. Especially of note was outstanding wine service for our BYOB bottles: Burgundy glasses provided for the Kistler Chard, Cabernet glasses for the Arrowood, discussing temperature and decanting needs. This is the type of service I don’t mind paying corkage for. Their own wine list is clever and fairly priced. Many, if not all, of the wines are also available by the pitcher or “pichet” which in this case describes a little decanter that holds the equivalent two glasses.
About the wines:
- 2005 Kistler Chardonnay Kistler Vineyard – USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Valley (11/14/2009)
A tropical fruit bowl with exquisite balance. Drink now or if you’re like me and love aged Kistlers, hold for years. (92 pts.)
- 1997 Arrowood Cabernet Sauvignon Réserve Spéciale – USA, California, Sonoma County (11/14/2009)
Restrained and elegant with cassis, tobacco leaf, freshly plowed earth, and cedar. Drink now. (90 pts.)
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