Fish Story, Lark Creek Restaurant Group’s entry into the Napa Valley dining scene, is scheduled to open Monday in Napa’s Riverfront complex, offering sustainable, seasonal, ocean-fresh seafood.
The restaurant is scrambling to get last-minute city approvals. It will offer dinners for the first week, then add lunches a week later.
Located downtown, with ample riverfront patio seating, Fish Story intends to serve lunch weekdays, brunch on weekends and dinner nightly, featuring live local Dungeness crab, live Maine lobster, fresh fish and shellfish all sourced in accordance with the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Program, plus a substantial number of non-seafood dishes.
Executive chef Stephen Barber said Fish Story will caters to locals and tourists alike, serving up “great food. It’s a place you will be able to afford more than once a month ... a restaurant where you can go for a quick bite or a full dining experience.
“We want to be able to accommodate those who come in for a quick business lunch as well as the diner interested in a multi-course meal. We are featuring sustainable seafood as well as ingredients from a large number of local purveyors.”
Located at the corner of Third and Main streets, the new riverside eatery features a raw bar with a daily selection of fresh oysters, clams, shrimp, crudo and ceviche.
Bound to be one of the restaurant’s popular selections is the Moby Dick, which includes a Maine lobster, a Dungeness crab, 10 oysters, 10 clams, 10 shrimp and an order of ceviche — all for $98.
Ranging from $5.25 for New England clam chowder to $16.50 for Dungeness crab and bay shrimp louie, starters include chilled Big Ranch heirloom tomato and cucumber soup with sweet peppers and sherry, Arctic char crudo with watermelon gelée and sea beans, Portuguese style clams and pork, and crispy fried Ipswich Full Belly clams.
Main courses include Day Boat scallops with Devil’s Gulch pork belly and fresh black-eyed peas, whole roasted fish of the day, Maine lobster roll, shrimp and grits, rock cod fish and chips, grilled Idaho trout, as well as New England Maine Lobster boil for two (that’s a two-pound lobster with clams, sweet corn and new potatoes) with a price tag of $65.
Chef Barber’s desserts include butterscotch pudding, cream soda float, lemon meringue pie, ice cream sundaes, a giant scoop of chocolate mousse with maraschino cherries, plus apple pie with cheddar gratinée.
The chef’s Southern roots show up in a number of the dishes, including the Pacific Benedict with smoked salmon planned for brunch. Daily specials will include items like fried green tomatoes with buttermilk dressing.
Barber opened BarBersQ in the spring of 2007 and prior to that served as executive chef at Mecca in San Francisco. He has considerable experience working in restaurants throughout the southern U.S.
Fish Story has a full bar, with the chef offering $5 appetizers and drink specials daily. There is a wine list featuring 175 offerings, including local and international brands, plus 20 wines available by the glass and 8-10 wines on tap. Fish Story ale will be brewed in house.
On display inside the new restaurant are two tanks for live local Dungeness crab and Maine lobster, plus a 12-foot iced raw bar with oysters, clams, shrimp, crabs, lobsters, whole fish and other seafood.
Fish Story offers 60 seats in the main dining room, with 24 more in the bar area, 12 seats in the entry courtyard and 32 in the indoor/outdoor Riverfront Room, which is also available for private dining. A patio includes 60 awning/umbrella shaded seats, with both fans and heaters at the ready should weather warrant. A public dock is planned to open next year outside the back door.
When all facets of the operation are up and running, hours will be 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and until 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. For reservations, call 251-5600.
slated at Bank Cafe
Located in Westin Verasa, Bank Cafe & Bar is featuring a series of monthly winemaker dinners. This month’s dinner features Grgich Hills, with vintner Violet Grgich on hand to introduce the evening’s wines.
A wine reception begins at 6:15 p.m. in the lobby bar, with guests set to enjoy Grgich Hills 2008 Fume Blanc.
Dinner begins with Wild Arctic Char in the style of Yvoire paired with 2007 Estate Chardonnay, Napa Valley.
The next course is Liberty Farm Duck with Red Wine and Forest Mushrooms, accompanied by 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon, Yountville Selection, Napa Valley.
Chef Ken Frank’s dessert is Gateau de Savoie with Strawberries, complemented by 2008 Violetta, Late Harvest, Napa Valley.
Cost of the dinner is $65 per person. For reservations, call 257-5151.