As I talked about in the last installment of our trip report, Melissa L. and I went to Napa Rose for dinner when we were in Disneyland last May. We had decided that it would be a great end to our week-long Southern California getaway. We were also celebrating our anniversary there. I had read many good things about the restaurant in the months leading up to this so I was very excited to try Napa Rose out. This post will recap the restaurant and our experience there.
We went to Napa Rose, which is located inside the Grand Californian Hotel, in the early evening. There is very clean feel to the restaurant. Not as in the restaurant is clean (of course, it was) but as in the feeling in there was bright, airy and relaxing. There didn’t seem to be a bad seat in there, as the windows stretch from ground to ceiling on one wall (sorry you have to look at me as well as those lovely windows in the photo). Looking the opposite way was the open kitchen. I always enjoy watching chefs work so it was a fun view for me, even if Gordon Ramsey wasn’t there yelling at someone.
There were subtle nods to California throughout the restaurant and they all came together to make Napa Rose feel very fresh and a place that embodies the feel of the west coast. Napa Rose sported an impressive list of wines. I’m not a big fan of wine so I didn’t partake but if you do enjoy wine I’d recommend trying a glass here. Most of the wines were on display. There were also murals of vineyards high on the wall, bordering the ceiling. The colors were subtle and didn’t jump out at you. They were nicely understated and added to the atmosphere of the whole restaurant.
As you can probably tell, I’m a fan of the theming at Napa Rose. Elegant, bright and airy are the best ways I know how to describe it. But, what’s a restaurant without food? It’s literally not a restaurant. If you’re going to a restaurant without food, I feel sorry for you and I recommend that you seek help. The choices on the menu at Napa Rose all looked delicious. All of the entree items fell in the 30-50 dollar range. It is a bit pricey but the quality more than makes up for it. The service here was excellent and our waiter was very informative without being pushy. He was the best waiter I’ve ever had at any restaurant. With his help, we came to our choices. The menu at Napa Rose changes seasonally and features specials. Melissa chose one of those specials, which was a swordfish with a green salsa. I chose the filet of beef with asparagus. Shortly after we ordered, the bread service came out.
The bread was very good. There were some traditional choices, like what you see on the top of the basket that were rolls. They were soft and warm. The bread closest to the bottom of the picture had green olives inside of it. I like green olives, so I liked the bread. Melissa wasn’t as crazy about it. The other choice wasn’t quite as good, in my opinion, but I’m not drawn to the crispier choices so I think it was more of my preference than it actually being worse. All of the bread was extremely fresh and delicious. Soon after, our entrees came out.
The entrees were fantastic. My filet was cooked to a perfect medium rare. It was thick, juicy and tender. The sides accompanied it well, as did the sauce. Melissa’s fish is something she still raves about. She says it’s the best fish she’s ever had and even though she doesn’t like salsa, she liked the sauce on top of this.
Already full, our eyes turned to the dessert menu because… I don’t need to explain why we had to get dessert. It’s dessert, of course we had to get it. I ended up with a chocolate cake with caramel gelato while Melissa chose a dessert that played off of strawberries. It had fresh strawberries as well as a sorbet and a few other treats.
As you can see, they wished us a Happy Anniversary with chocolate sauce on both of our plates. The serving staff really made us feel special throughout the whole meal.
As far as the desserts go, the chocolate cake was very good and extremely rich. It was a little rich for my taste but most chocolate lovers would go crazy for it. The caramel gelato that came with it was very good and helped balance out the dish. Melissa’s dessert was the star though. The fresh strawberries were delicious as was her sorbet. They also had a play off of a fruit roll-up. That was pretty good and much better than those fruit roll-up’s that you can find in the store. I liked her dessert a little bit better than mine but they were both delectable.
Overall, this was one of the best meals I’ve ever had. Everything was cooked to perfection. The restaurant’s ambiance was a perfect fit to the food we were eating and the decor was perfectly themed, yet understated. I haven’t tried all of the restaurants at Disneyland but I’d have a hard time believing that there was one better than this. Of course, the price reflects that and eating here won’t be a regular occurrence for Melissa and I. But, I imagine we’ll go here whenever it fits into the budget.
Restaurant Rating – 10/10