Archive for the ‘fresh tomatoes’ Tag

cook lives up to its name   Leave a comment

cook sign

cook st. helena features a relatively small menu but big flavors. This undersized, and noisy, restaurant in downtown St. Helena, in the heart of the Napa Valley, has barely more than two dozen offerings. In fact, its wine list is longer than the menu. This means the restaurant does a few things very well, rather than many mediocre.cookinterior


In the soup and salad category there’s a Caesar or Chopped along with the soup of the day. However, heirloom tomatoes with evoo, grey salt and basil in the Sides listing caught my eye. That’s what I chose as my starter. There’s nothing that tastes like summer, even when fall is in the air, like a garden fresh tomato. The olive oil, grey salt and fresh basil were the equivalent of extra gifts on a special occasion.



Four types of house made pastas are available every night, and the entrees include chicken, pork, trout and a daily risotto. On my visit, the latter was served with a seared scallop, mussels and Temele cheese drizzled with a light fennel sauce. I asked the server three times to repeat the name of the cheese. I’d never heard of it, and it sounded intriguing; also I wanted to make sure it wasn’t a goat cheese. I wasn’t disappointed. The risotto was creamy thanks to the buttery soft cheese. My husband’s slow roasted pork was slightly spicy, but tender.



We were comfortably sated, and none of the desserts sounded tempting enough to push us over the edge.

cook st. helena
Four Plates
1310 Main St.
St. Helena, Calif.