As many Bay Area restaurants find themselves unable to operate within their urban settings during COVID-19, some are taking their award-winning kitchens on the road and plopping them down right in the middle of nearby farms and vineyards.
Now, you can treat yourself to a culinary staycation this summer complete with Michelin-worthy dining, ever-flowing bubbly, and even private pool parties in stunning and, most importantly, safe bucolic settings. Here's where to make reservations in August and September.
Quince at the Farm
From Jackson Square to the backcountry, three-Michelin-starred Quince is hosting a series of alfresco lunches on select Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays through August at their coastal Fresh Run Farm in Bolinas, and at McEvoy Ranch in the picturesque hills of West Marin. The experience begins with a guided tour followed by a leisurely lunch. At Fresh Run, you might just get to harvest your own veggies; at McEvoy, you can stroll among the 80 acres of olive trees before settling in at the open-air pagoda to dine with views. Reservations ($325-$350 per person + drinks and tax) are available at Resy.
Avery on the Farm
By far the most exclusive offering on this list, San Francisco's Avery is transporting diners to some insanely scenic local farms and vineyards that aren't typically open to the public. Hosted on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays through September with seatings at 5pm and 7:30pm, the private dinners take place at a communal table for up to 10 close family and friends, possibly on top of a mountain or in the middle of a vineyard—you won't know until booking. Taking a page from Outstanding in the Field, Avery's website says "no two evenings will be the same."
You'll arrive in style: Avery has arranged for Epic Limo to pick up their guests and drive them, with canapés and Champagne, to the evening's location. On arrival, groups are greeted with a glass of wine and a property tour before sitting down to a unique menu—from starters to nightcaps at sunset—prepared by chef Rodney Wages. There are plenty of options to upgrade the evening, too. For an extra cost, you can extend your stay with a Champagne pool party at a winery, spend the night at a private villa, or schedule an afternoon of wine tasting before dinner. Find more information and make reservations (starting at $289 per person) at averyonthefarm.com.
SingleThread at Kistler Vineyards
Another three-Michelin-star standout, SingleThread is taking its downtown Healdsburg operation out to the vineyard, Thursdays through Mondays through the end of September. Partners Kyle and Katina Connaughton have teamed up with nearby Kistler Vineyards for a Summer Wine Dinner Series that features 10 courses paired with Kistler's single-vineyard wines at socially distanced tables. A portion of the proceeds from these dinners will be donated to Sonoma Family Meal and to Community Foundation Sonoma County's COVID-19 Resilience Fund; diners can also make donations at the time of reservation or enter a raffle for a prize package valued at $20,000. Reservations (starting at $375 per person + tax and tip; $300 for optional wine pairings) are available at Tock.
Fall Release Preview Dinners at Skipstone Winery
Skipstone Winery in Geyserville is hosting a series of outdoor dinners in September to showcase their new release wines. The winery has partnered with three Sonoma County culinary endeavors: Istanbul Modern, a partnership between Michelin star alums and the heads of Skipstone's culinary program; Healdsburg icon Valette; and Cyrus, the former two-Michelin-starred restaurant that closed in 2012 but recently announced its forthcoming reopening. Examples of dishes include Liberty Farms duck breast, Skipstone Ranch lamb, Snake River Wagyu New York strip, and California king salmon. Reservations ($300-400 per person or $200-300 for wine club members) are available at skipstonewines.com.