Late summer and early fall are perfect times to enjoy good weather
and good wine in the South Bay. It’s when local wineries and vineyards present or
partake in a bevy of events to showcase the best wines they have to offer.
Executive Chef Nick Church at Chaminade Resort and Spa (1
its ACCESS Give Back Day from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Aug.
19. The winery is donating 20 percent of all purchases made that day to ACCESS,
a nonprofit program that provides resources to parents whose babies are
in the Good Samaritan neonatal intensive care unit in San Jose. The family-owned
winery features many popular wines from grapes grown regionally, including
chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, merlot and cabernet sauvignon.
The 36th Annual Capitola Art and Wine Festival in charming downtown Capitola
is one of the can’t-miss festivals of the region. The very best wines from 22 Santa
Cruz Mountain wineries are available to taste throughout the two-day event on
Sept. 8-9. Rounding out the weekend are more than 160 artisan booths, some of
the coast’s best food trucks, live music and activities for all ages.
For a truly immersive wine dinner experience, consider splurging on Day
of the Doon XVI–Winemaker Dinner Feast and Estate Vineyard Tour,
from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 29, at innovative winemaker Randall
Graham’s Popelouchum Vineyard and Farm in San Juan Bautista. The
exclusive $200-per-person event is meant to be casual; guests are encouraged
to wear comfortable shoes for touring the estate. Graham’s Bonny
Doon Vineyard wines, like the grenache gris and grenache blanc, are paired
with a menu featuring produce grown on the farm. —Pam Marino
100 South Bay Accent
style, Flights’ three locations have taken off as
dining destinations for high-flying foodies, with
another opening in Mountain View this summer.
Founded by restaurateur Alex Hult, and his wife,
Sarah Hult, the eclectic eateries have won over
scores of fans. The waitstaff—dressed in stylish
black flight attendant or pilot outfits—serve everything
on the menu as a trio of three unique flavors,
including such offerings as fried chicken and waffles,
gourmet mac n’ cheese and angus beef sliders.
The crowd-pleasing aviation-themed restaurants
keep variety flowing into glasses with refreshing
beer, wine, spirit and cocktail flights. $$
The Halford, Santa Clara, 408/243-1290. With a
flair for fine dining renditions of hearty dishes that
pair well with craft beer, this anglophile gastro pub
dishes out savory favorites like Waygu flatiron steak
and maple-glazed duck leg confit. $
Hangar Steak, 1800 Old Bayshore Highway, Burlingame.
650/552-3505. Part of the Marriott, this
standout New American steakhouse offers delightful
dining by the bay. $$
Huntington Station, 30 E. Third St., Morgan
Hill. 408/779-3376. Generously portioned beef,
chicken, seafood and pasta entrees are served up in
a casual, sports pub atmosphere. $$
Ladera Grill, 17305 Monterey St., Morgan Hill.
408/201-9200. This eclectic epicurean eatery
consistently garners accolades including the Wine
Spectator Award of Excellence. $$$
Lalla Grill, 55 River Oaks Pl., San Jose, 408/618-
8072. The mirrored 15-foot-long wall of spirits
and colorful mod architectural theme set the tone
for vibrant dishes including ahi ceviche. $$
The Loft Bar & Bistro, 90 S. Second St., San
Jose. 408/291-0677. Contemporary and casual restaurant
in a historic downtown building, featuring
great appetizers, tapas style. $
Los Altos Grill, 233 Third St., Los Altos.
650/948-3524. This popular dinner spot features
tasty dishes, including rotisserie pork chops and a
spicy tuna burger. $$
Madera, 2825 Sand Hill Road,
Menlo Park. 650/ 561-1540. Signature
restaurant of Rosewood
Sand Hill Hotel features woodburning
grill to produce artful
seafood and meats. $$$
Menlo Grill Bistro & Bar
(Stanford Park Hotel), 100
El Camino Real, Menlo Park.
650/330-2790. Innovative take
on classic American dishes that
are made with fresh, sustainable
Moss Beach Distillery, 140 Beach Way, Moss
Beach. 650/728-5595. Historic tavern offers
breathtaking Pacific Ocean views and a menu of
all-natural meats, wild-caught seafood and organic
produce, along with select wines and cocktails. $$
Nola, 535 Ramona St., Palo Alto. 650/ 328-2722.
This funky, popular spot brings New Orleans style
to the South Bay. $$
Orchard City Kitchen (The Pruneyard) 1875 S.
Bascom Ave., Suite 190, Campbell. 408/340-5285.
Led by Michelin-recognized Executive Chef Jeffrey
Stout, OCK offers inventive, seasonal dishes. $$
Parcel 104 (Santa Clara Marriot) 2700 Mission
College Blvd., Santa Clara. 408/ 970-6104. Seasonal
menu from acclaimed chefs Bradley Ogden
Chaminade Lane, Santa Cruz) is creating a series of farm-totable
wine dinners through the summer, each one featuring
different local wineries. On Friday, Aug. 10, he’s featuring
three “Summit to Sea” wineries from the Santa Cruz
Mountains: Burrell School, Loma Prieta and Wrights Station.
Church weaves locally sourced ingredients and pairs
them perfectly with each wine throughout a five-course
meal. Advance tickets of $110 all-inclusive are available
online at chaminade.com.
Clos LaChance Vineyards (1 Hummingbird Lane, San Martin)
is combining wine tasting with fundraising for a good cause with
humanely handled beef, organic bison, all-natural
chicken, turkey, vegan, and crab cake options. It
doesn’t stop there; an array of cheeses, toppings,
sauces and an assortment of buns (including gluten
free) and bowls—make for a build-your-own
checklist menu that can produce more than a million
combinations. The Counter also offers business
lunch catering. $
District, 65 N. San Pedro St., San Jose. 669/292-
5252. The well-rounded menu features shareable
plates, pizza, house-made charcuterie, and wines
and whiskeys from around the world. $-$$
Dry Creek Grill, 1580 Hamilton Ave., San Jose.
408/264-2011. Serving up succulent meats and
fresh, locally sourced seafood in a lively, spirited
Eureka!, 19369 Stevens Creek Blvd., Cupertino,
669/266-6752. Burgers take center stage at this
gourmet gastropub. Bone marrow, bison and Fresno
fig are just a few of Eureka’s innovative interpretations.
Flights, Campbell. 408/364-1564; Los Gatos,
408/354-3434; Burlingame, 650/513-6059. Specializing
in shareable comfort food served tapas
200 DINING HOT SPOTS