Oenotri – California

Oenotri is an Italian restaurant in Napa, and another place that J has dined at in the past.


When we tried to get a table here on our second day in the States they were pretty busy so we decided to sit at the bar instead.


Unless J is travelling with one of his business partners or is entertaining clients he is a party of 1, so he usually sits at the bar at whatever establishment he is dining at. This gives him the oppurtunty to chat to the bartender and any other patrons also enjoying the bar scene.


I shouldn’t give away secrets but choosing to sit at the bar also means you can get fed a lot quicker than if you have to wait for a table. We chose this option quite a few times on our US adventure and it definitely got us seated, with food in front us, a lot quicker than those that chose to wait.


So we pulled ourselves up onto the stools at Oenotri and persued the place as well as the menu.


I was quite taken with the colour scheme, and if I could have fitted a couple of the dining chairs into my luggage, I would have!

The bartender was a bit slow to serve us and not all that friendly but we eventually got our order in for a beer for J and a wine for me, and some much needed food.


J recommends the lamb’s heart pasta but decided to try a different pasta this time and went with a ragu.

The yellow stuff on top is egg, which might sound strange but was amazing. The pasta is made fresh daily and is divine. I may have had a little bit of food envy…


J says it is some of the best pasta he has ever had, and compares it to the one he had at Ormeggio on the Spit in Sydney (which he still raves about).


I had the margherita pizza (mozzarella di bufala with sam marzano tomatoes and basil).

An excellent pizza. I do like a good pizza and this ticked every box with its crispy thin base and simple topping.


On their website, Oenotri say “As part of our goal to serve quality artisanal pizza, we imported a wood-fueled Acino oven from Naples to bake authentic pizza Napoletana.”


I think they are doing alright!


We also shared a green salad. As some of you may be aware, Americans like to eat their salad before the main course, as an appetizer or entree really. To avoid this, if you want to eat your sald with your meal, ask for a side salad, or for the salad to be served on the side (same thing, different way of describing). It will possibly confuse your server but it should work in most places. The bartender did check with us that we wanted the salad as a side. Yes please!


For dessert, we again decided to share something. After the chocolate indulgence of the night before, we opted for something not so rich; the Meyer lemon cream puffs with raspberried and almonds.

Hello lemony tangy goodness. I think we were both considering licking the plate on this one. The profiteroles were filled with a lemon butter cream, the almonds gave a bit of crunch and the raspberries added a hint of freshness plus a bit more tang. A total winner.


A really good dinner was had by all, and I would go back to Oenotri.

Oenotri on Urbanspoon

5 Responses to “Oenotri – California”

  1. CheezyK says:

    If that pizza tasted anywhere near as good as it looks, I’d say they’re doing a very good job! I think it’s definitely time to head to Firechief to quash the cravings …

  2. Wow, it sounds like it was real hit with all aspects (except maybe bartender friendliness!). What is the lamb’s heart pasta like? Is it the shape of the pasta or is there lamb’s heart in it?

  3. Libby says:

    Mmmm egg and pasta!

  4. Hotly Spiced says:

    The food in this restaurant looks really good. I love the look of the pizza. And it’s great to know that when in the USA and starving, sit at the bar rather than wait for a table xx

  5. Helen says:

    Wow – that looks amazing. Definitely putting this one on my must visit list next time I’m in Napa – hope it’s still trading cos I don’t have plans just yet!! Glad you found some great food… :)

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