La Toque

★★★★☆
  • 1140 Rutherford Rd

    Rutherford, CA 94573

    Map & Directions
  • 707-963-9770

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We were in Napa for our wedding and went to La Togue the day after our weddding as we had heard many great things about the restaurant. Our server seemed hurried and did not attend to us very well. With all the great restaurants in Napa, we will not be revisiting their restaurant.

3
★★★☆☆

We were in Napa for our wedding and went to La Togue the day after our weddding as we had heard many great things about the restaurant. Our server seemed hurried and did not attend to us very well. With all the great restaurants in Napa, we will not be revisiting their restaurant.

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I've dined at La Toque 6 times over the last 3 years. I just wanted to throw that out there to let people know that my two-cents are not based on one visit or any one experience!

THE FOOD: Top notch!! It's a 5 course prix fixe format, and the amount of food presented has always been perfect. It's structured in a classic progression & the intensity of the dishes builds with each course. I've tasted foie gras dishes from all over the country, and I've found the best preparations here at La Toque. If you're a lover of foie gras make sure you don't miss it. Also, don't miss the ravioli with fresh porcini. And, in January when they're in season, they offer a separate 5 course Black Truffle Menu!

THE WINE: As an oenophile, I have to tell you that the best food & wine pairings I've ever had were at La Toque. I once dined there with five of my friends who all work in fine dining restaurants, and we were all blown away by the the sommelier's wine pairing & presentation of each wine. Even with a full dining room, he had the time to pour each of the wines & tell us about the background / history of the wine & why it was chosen to pair with that dish. It was amazing! On another occasion a couple of years ago, the same sommelier recommended a bottle of Sea Smoke pinot noir, and I loved it so much that the next day I joined their mailing list (since then, it's become something of a cult wine).

THE SERVICE: The service has always been warm, hospitable, knowledgable, and memorable. The servers are elegant & professional, but relaxed & unpretentious. I can't recall any requests that were not accomodated immediately!

THE PRICE: Other reviewers have made an issue of the price, and you should know that it's about $425 for dinner for two people -- but it's a great value for dining in one of the Napa Valley's top restaurants (and it's half as much as you'll spend at the French Laundry). If you can afford it, don't miss La Toque. If you can't, don't write a crappy review.

2
★★★★★

I've dined at La Toque 6 times over the last 3 years. I just wanted to throw that out there to let people know that my two-cents are not based on one visit or any one experience!

THE FOOD: Top notch!! It's a 5 course prix fixe format, and the amount of food presented has always been perfect. It's structured in a classic progression & the intensity of the dishes builds with each course. I've tasted foie gras dishes from all over the country, and I've found the best preparations here at La Toque. If you're a lover of foie gras make sure you don't miss it. Also, don't miss the ravioli with fresh porcini. And, in January when they're in season, they offer a separate 5 course Black Truffle Menu!

THE WINE: As an oenophile, I have to tell you that the best food & wine pairings I've ever had were at La Toque. I once dined there with five of my friends who all work in fine dining restaurants, and we were all blown away by the the sommelier's wine pairing & presentation of each wine. Even with a full dining room, he had the time to pour each of the wines & tell us about the background / history of the wine & why it was chosen to pair with that dish. It was amazing! On another occasion a couple of years ago, the same sommelier recommended a bottle of Sea Smoke pinot noir, and I loved it so much that the next day I joined their mailing list (since then, it's become something of a cult wine).

THE SERVICE: The service has always been warm, hospitable, knowledgable, and memorable. The servers are elegant & professional, but relaxed & unpretentious. I can't recall any requests that were not accomodated immediately!

THE PRICE: Other reviewers have made an issue of the price, and you should know that it's about $425 for dinner for two people -- but it's a great value for dining in one of the Napa Valley's top restaurants (and it's half as much as you'll spend at the French Laundry). If you can afford it, don't miss La Toque. If you can't, don't write a crappy review.

Pros: food & wine pairings, wine list gems, attached to a hotel, cigar menu

Cons: hard to get a reservation, no full bar

.

We have been going once a year for 5 years and only for 1 year were things slightly below normal. The service is about as good as it gets. The food is spot on. The pairing are often unusual and contain some true hidden gems. The dining room is small and just about any table is good one, but ask to sit near the fireplace if possible (it can get warm, however). If things end up not being to your liking, let them know, they will accomodate you.

If you are ok with $150+ per person, La Toque should not be overlooked, it one of N.Cal's best.

2
★★★★★

We have been going once a year for 5 years and only for 1 year were things slightly below normal. The service is about as good as it gets. The food is spot on. The pairing are often unusual and contain some true hidden gems. The dining room is small and just about any table is good one, but ask to sit near the fireplace if possible (it can get warm, however). If things end up not being to your liking, let them know, they will accomodate you.

If you are ok with $150+ per person, La Toque should not be overlooked, it one of N.Cal's best.

Pros: Food, wine, setting

Cons: Wish it was closer to SF

.

Lookit, you pay these prices, you expect... more than this. We got the prix fixe with wine. Veal was like chewing on microwaved kitchen sponges with sink fungus reduction. One of the wines paired with the starter was a browned mess of the last dregs of a $14 bottle (no exaggerating, it was an older white rhone). Service, however, was polished and professional, to plaigerize a prior reviewer, and the room itself was lovely and serene, like my lovely and serene date, who demostrated her superpowers by preventing me from storming the kitchen.

1
★★★☆☆

Lookit, you pay these prices, you expect... more than this. We got the prix fixe with wine. Veal was like chewing on microwaved kitchen sponges with sink fungus reduction. One of the wines paired with the starter was a browned mess of the last dregs of a $14 bottle (no exaggerating, it was an older white rhone). Service, however, was polished and professional, to plaigerize a prior reviewer, and the room itself was lovely and serene, like my lovely and serene date, who demostrated her superpowers by preventing me from storming the kitchen.

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Tried La Toque for a birthday dinner treat - after reading dozens of mixed reviews - it really goes to show that reviews can be so subjective! We had a perfectly nice time. Service was friendly, professional, polished, and attentive (not snooty). Went on Sat night for early seating. Dining room was about 75% filled throughout meal. Meal lasted 2 hours. We had the prix fixe ($98 each) and the wine pairings ($62 each). Total bill is about $400 (18% service charge included). Once you know the numbers beforehand, you won't get sticker shock. So just sit back and enjoy. Sommelier v. friendly and knowledgeable (not snooty). 4 courses and 1 dessert course, every course delicious, some more than most (foie gras and slow cooked bream with crispy edible scales stand out). Had table by fireplace, did not "hear other people's conversations" as other reviewers complained. Room is done in a plain, French countrystyle, not super luxe but still quite pleasant. There is outdoor patio seating but not that nice (and can be cold). If on Highway 29, you can miss Rutherford Road turning into restaurant, so slow down it's immediately to the right once you see Rutherford city sign - blink and you will miss it. Please don't complain that "for this price you should get a perfect experience". No experience is perfect regardless of price, and this was an expensive meal but it was worth it IMHO and birthday person was v. happy which is what mattered. Wines are very well picked, too. If you don't do the wine pairings, you might regret or think the food isn't as good on its own, so might as well go for the pairings. Can't understand why some reviewers complained food not enough - was splitting at the seams - this was at least a 4000 calorie meal! Maybe restaurant changed tactics after reading complaints.

2
★★★★★

Tried La Toque for a birthday dinner treat - after reading dozens of mixed reviews - it really goes to show that reviews can be so subjective! We had a perfectly nice time. Service was friendly, professional, polished, and attentive (not snooty). Went on Sat night for early seating. Dining room was about 75% filled throughout meal. Meal lasted 2 hours. We had the prix fixe ($98 each) and the wine pairings ($62 each). Total bill is about $400 (18% service charge included). Once you know the numbers beforehand, you won't get sticker shock. So just sit back and enjoy. Sommelier v. friendly and knowledgeable (not snooty). 4 courses and 1 dessert course, every course delicious, some more than most (foie gras and slow cooked bream with crispy edible scales stand out). Had table by fireplace, did not "hear other people's conversations" as other reviewers complained. Room is done in a plain, French countrystyle, not super luxe but still quite pleasant. There is outdoor patio seating but not that nice (and can be cold). If on Highway 29, you can miss Rutherford Road turning into restaurant, so slow down it's immediately to the right once you see Rutherford city sign - blink and you will miss it. Please don't complain that "for this price you should get a perfect experience". No experience is perfect regardless of price, and this was an expensive meal but it was worth it IMHO and birthday person was v. happy which is what mattered. Wines are very well picked, too. If you don't do the wine pairings, you might regret or think the food isn't as good on its own, so might as well go for the pairings. Can't understand why some reviewers complained food not enough - was splitting at the seams - this was at least a 4000 calorie meal! Maybe restaurant changed tactics after reading complaints.

Pros: polished attentive top notch service (not snooty), well-made and delicious food

Cons: a bit pricey but ok if special occasion and mentally prepared for sticker shock beforehand

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I just have to say it is by far the most wonderful dining experience I've ever had. Try the truffle menu! Altough the beginning of the dinner as a little bumpy, it turned out to be a great evening.

2
★★★★★

I just have to say it is by far the most wonderful dining experience I've ever had. Try the truffle menu! Altough the beginning of the dinner as a little bumpy, it turned out to be a great evening.

Pros: Food, Service, Ambience

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Every one we spoke to in napa said this place was the next French Laundry and we left feeling that the only thing cleaned out were our wallets.With a price fix of $98 a person and a service charge of 18% on both the food and the wine list I felt cheated because the reason for a tip in my view is to reward good service and food both of which we were denied.The menu while looking promising on paper did not live up to what I had herd about this restaurant.Over all I think they should get their heads out of the clouds and start worring about putting people in the seats and keeping them happy or Le Toque will be a flash in the pan.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Every one we spoke to in napa said this place was the next French Laundry and we left feeling that the only thing cleaned out were our wallets.With a price fix of $98 a person and a service charge of 18% on both the food and the wine list I felt cheated because the reason for a tip in my view is to reward good service and food both of which we were denied.The menu while looking promising on paper did not live up to what I had herd about this restaurant.Over all I think they should get their heads out of the clouds and start worring about putting people in the seats and keeping them happy or Le Toque will be a flash in the pan.

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LaToque having been recommended to us as a must, we were looking forward to dining here. However, the experience wasn't what we expected. The service was terrible, even saw our server enjoying a glass of wine at the bar one time while we waited an eternity between courses, which resulted in our food being cold when it arrived to our table. The presentation was good, but cold food just didn't do it any justice. Given the quality of other restaurants we dined at, I would NOT recommend La Toque. The food had the chance to be great but someone should manage this place better. We had to ask our water server to ask our waiter to skip our last course & bring the check so we could leave. For the fixed price ($98pp) and fixed gratuity (18%), we were terribly disappointed. Thank goodness for other good restaurants in the Valley.

1
★★☆☆☆

LaToque having been recommended to us as a must, we were looking forward to dining here. However, the experience wasn't what we expected. The service was terrible, even saw our server enjoying a glass of wine at the bar one time while we waited an eternity between courses, which resulted in our food being cold when it arrived to our table. The presentation was good, but cold food just didn't do it any justice. Given the quality of other restaurants we dined at, I would NOT recommend La Toque. The food had the chance to be great but someone should manage this place better. We had to ask our water server to ask our waiter to skip our last course & bring the check so we could leave. For the fixed price ($98pp) and fixed gratuity (18%), we were terribly disappointed. Thank goodness for other good restaurants in the Valley.

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We were highly anticipating this meal. It was highly disappointing. In terms of ambience, the room is spartan and cold. We were seated right next to the entrance door. Somehow, a large party failed to notice the "not good for kids" note on this listing and brought their 6 year old and an infant that couldn't have been more than a month old. Amazing. The 6 year old ran around the room a couple of times. Pleasant. The food was good but not even close to being worth the 400 dollars we spent for 2 (with wine pairing). I've had much better meals in SF for much less. Too bad.

1
★★☆☆☆

We were highly anticipating this meal. It was highly disappointing. In terms of ambience, the room is spartan and cold. We were seated right next to the entrance door. Somehow, a large party failed to notice the "not good for kids" note on this listing and brought their 6 year old and an infant that couldn't have been more than a month old. Amazing. The 6 year old ran around the room a couple of times. Pleasant. The food was good but not even close to being worth the 400 dollars we spent for 2 (with wine pairing). I've had much better meals in SF for much less. Too bad.

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The food, service, wine, ambience, down to the wrapped menus I got to take home...everything was impeccable. Maybe we got lucky on the service since it was a Sunday night, and every table had only 2 guests, but there was never a moment when my glass was less than half full. We ordered one pre fixe menu ($98 for 5 courses) and the special black truffles menu ($160 for 5 courses), and every dish was well prepared with the finest ingredients and clean presentation. When we expressed interests in dining and food prep, our waiter offered us a close look at the kitchen and its staff. The overall bill might be quite high, but it's well worth it.

2
★★★★★

The food, service, wine, ambience, down to the wrapped menus I got to take home...everything was impeccable. Maybe we got lucky on the service since it was a Sunday night, and every table had only 2 guests, but there was never a moment when my glass was less than half full. We ordered one pre fixe menu ($98 for 5 courses) and the special black truffles menu ($160 for 5 courses), and every dish was well prepared with the finest ingredients and clean presentation. When we expressed interests in dining and food prep, our waiter offered us a close look at the kitchen and its staff. The overall bill might be quite high, but it's well worth it.

Pros: staff and service, food, ambience

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We celebrated our anniversary with dinner at La Toque. We were seated next to the fireplace in a very nice room. The food was heavenly! The service had equalled the food, until a large party was seated behind us, at which point our waiter never returned. For the cost, this is simply unacceptable. When we asked for the manager to complain about the service during the meal, a genuine effort was made to correct this, including providing excellent service for the remainder of the meal, a complimentary glass of wine with dessert, and removing the mandatory 18% service charge(allowing us the discretion to tip what we deemed appropriate).

2
★★★★☆

We celebrated our anniversary with dinner at La Toque. We were seated next to the fireplace in a very nice room. The food was heavenly! The service had equalled the food, until a large party was seated behind us, at which point our waiter never returned. For the cost, this is simply unacceptable. When we asked for the manager to complain about the service during the meal, a genuine effort was made to correct this, including providing excellent service for the remainder of the meal, a complimentary glass of wine with dessert, and removing the mandatory 18% service charge(allowing us the discretion to tip what we deemed appropriate).

Pros: Food, Atmosphere

Cons: Service, Cost

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As we neared the completion of our third hour of dining at La Toque and peered through wine-bleary eyes at the tired and inebriated seated in the lovely room around us, we looked back at the fine meal that had been served. Five beautifully-presented courses with expertly matched wines, capped off by a splendid cheese finale. Impeccable service and a delightfully warm maitre d'. But after three+ hours, it became an ordeal, even for a restaurant-savvy 30-40-something couple. And at $400 for the two of us, it felt, in retrospect, like an elaborately-staged cash-extraction ceremony. Fine dining is always a morsel away from grotesque self-indulgence, and La Toque brings one perilously close to that line.

2
★★★★★

As we neared the completion of our third hour of dining at La Toque and peered through wine-bleary eyes at the tired and inebriated seated in the lovely room around us, we looked back at the fine meal that had been served. Five beautifully-presented courses with expertly matched wines, capped off by a splendid cheese finale. Impeccable service and a delightfully warm maitre d'. But after three+ hours, it became an ordeal, even for a restaurant-savvy 30-40-something couple. And at $400 for the two of us, it felt, in retrospect, like an elaborately-staged cash-extraction ceremony. Fine dining is always a morsel away from grotesque self-indulgence, and La Toque brings one perilously close to that line.

Pros: Fare, Presentation, Maitre d'

Cons: Slow pace, Huge $$$$$, A tad precious

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Get the wine pairings. It makes for an expensive, but truly exceptional, night out.

2
★★★★★

Get the wine pairings. It makes for an expensive, but truly exceptional, night out.

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My husband took me for my birthday last year as a surprise and it was the best meal I've ever had. We were seated by the fireplace and it was very romantic. The service was warm and friendly but very professional and the wines they chose to match the menu were incredible. We'll be back soon I hope.

2
★★★★★

My husband took me for my birthday last year as a surprise and it was the best meal I've ever had. We were seated by the fireplace and it was very romantic. The service was warm and friendly but very professional and the wines they chose to match the menu were incredible. We'll be back soon I hope.

Pros: fab food, matching wines, perfect service

Cons: dinner only

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We recently had a company party for 18 people at La Toque and it was great! We had a private room all to ourselves. Our host had prearranged to have the wine pairing package with our meals. With each course a different wine was poured with each dish. What a great way to taste new wines I'd never heard of befor. The food was wonderful, service was personal and knowledgable and we were able to have a much fun as we wanted....Which we did!!

2
★★★★★

We recently had a company party for 18 people at La Toque and it was great! We had a private room all to ourselves. Our host had prearranged to have the wine pairing package with our meals. With each course a different wine was poured with each dish. What a great way to taste new wines I'd never heard of befor. The food was wonderful, service was personal and knowledgable and we were able to have a much fun as we wanted....Which we did!!

Pros: Private party room, Nice wine pairing, Great food

Cons: Parking difficult, Closed for Lunch

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If you haven't been, you must! Probably the best meal I've had with service to match.

2
★★★★★

If you haven't been, you must! Probably the best meal I've had with service to match.

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The food is always terrific. And of course there's a great wine list and La Toque does a unique and wonderful "wine pairing". Yet what really sets this restaurant above the rest is the wonderful staff. They set the standard for a friendly, knowledgable yet professional team. I can't wait to go back tomorrow.

2
★★★★★

The food is always terrific. And of course there's a great wine list and La Toque does a unique and wonderful "wine pairing". Yet what really sets this restaurant above the rest is the wonderful staff. They set the standard for a friendly, knowledgable yet professional team. I can't wait to go back tomorrow.

Pros: wine apiring, great chef, charming setting

Cons: hard to get in

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A sweeping bow with a plumed toque to Ken Frank for his unqualified success in Rutherford. If only we lived closer!

2
★★★★★

A sweeping bow with a plumed toque to Ken Frank for his unqualified success in Rutherford. If only we lived closer!

Pros: Imaginative dishes, Exceptional wine list

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A full meal with no bloated feeling is what I like best about La Toque. I usually just order whatever my dinner partner did not order so we can taste more delicasies. And the wine paring menu is do die for!

2
★★★★★

A full meal with no bloated feeling is what I like best about La Toque. I usually just order whatever my dinner partner did not order so we can taste more delicasies. And the wine paring menu is do die for!

Pros: Superb service, Quiet atmosphere

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The La Toque dining experience is out of this world. From the Froi Gras first course to the optional cheese course to the decadent chocolate dessert, the meal is one I will not soon forget. The wine pairing is a nice option and is well done (see WSJ wine column 8/23/02).

I just wish I lived a little closer as the trip home is always a bit of a challenge...

2
★★★★★

The La Toque dining experience is out of this world. From the Froi Gras first course to the optional cheese course to the decadent chocolate dessert, the meal is one I will not soon forget. The wine pairing is a nice option and is well done (see WSJ wine column 8/23/02).

I just wish I lived a little closer as the trip home is always a bit of a challenge...

Pros: Great Service, Wine Pairings, Ambience

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Ambitious and rewarding dining, fulfilled every expectation, La Toque is the quintessential Napa restaurant, far surpassing anything in its very special league.

2
★★★★★

Ambitious and rewarding dining, fulfilled every expectation, La Toque is the quintessential Napa restaurant, far surpassing anything in its very special league.

Pros: Wine pairings, Food choices, easy reservations

Cons: no bar

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The menu selection and wine pairing were the best I've experienced in the USA. Truly excellent overall experience characteristic of the very best restaurants.

2
★★★★★

The menu selection and wine pairing were the best I've experienced in the USA. Truly excellent overall experience characteristic of the very best restaurants.

Pros: great menu, super wine matching, great service

Cons: advanced reservations

Editorial from

After earning a prized Michelin star at the tiny location in Rutherford, chef Ken Frank moves his illustrious restaurant to a grander culinary playground in Napa's Westin Veresa. A back-to-back fireplace anchors the modern space, infusing…

 

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