This is an English tea house serving real English-style tea, both the beverage and the meal, a real Afternoon tea experience and so far probably the best of the type which I have had in the US.
They have a variety of great teas from a local tea maker in nearby Duncan's Mills and make their own lemon curb, mustard blend, scones, etc. They have real clotted cream, pasties, etc., as well as various finger sandwiches. All is served on an assortment of china with tea trays, etc.
If one gets the full tea service, it comes with an endless pot of the tea of your choice, with a huge range. It's all brewed nice and strong, too, avoiding a common problem which I find in the US of having overly weak tea. The English-breakfast-type blend is also a strong, real British-style tea that properly holds up well to milk and sugar but they also have a wide range of other teas for those who want something different.
Service is very attentive and friendly.
Although it's still fairly Americanised Chinese food, Ting Hau downtown on 4th St has great food that is prepared unusually well with good-quality ingredients, more subtlety than one usually finds, and always plenty of good, varied vegetables with the dishes. The service is nice and friendly and the place itself is attractive and pleasant, with nice, simple decor, nice windows looking onto the street and walkway next to it, and a small area of outdoor seating. It's also in a good location in the heart of downtown.
They also have a small kids' menu choice.
This is a great little diner with homemade traditional diner food - eggs, pancakes, sandwiches, burgers, etc. Service is friendly, the food is great. It's a small place in the G&G Shopping Center.
Favorite Dish: The Tostada Omelette is great.
This is the best BBQ place around, with real St Louis ribs, probably the best I've had outside St. Louis, excellent BBQ beef brisket, both sliced and chopped, plus pork and chicken. This is the real deal, with slow smoked meat. They have good beans, good cole slaw, and good cornbread, too. It's a little hole in the wall place.
Favorite Dish: St Louis ribs and sliced brisket.
This is a great restaurant with eclectic, creative cuisine using fresh, local, and home-made ingredients, all created thoughtfully and carefully. It's in a nice old building that was semi-derelict for some years and has nice decor and lots of windows, plus a nice bar/counter in the middle. Service is great.
It's located in the heart of the SOFA neighborhood, the South A St area, a neat old mixed commercial area in a residential neighborhood that has really been rejuvenated in the last 10 years, with art galleries, eateries, shops, etc.
Favorite Dish: Crispy pork belly BLT, granola waffle, deviled egg with kichee, etc.
This has long been one of the best Chinese places in the whole North Bay area, and at least many people from the region consider it to be (it was voted such in the San Francisco Chronicle, as well). There used to be a better place just a few blocks away, but it unfortunately was not as established and closed a little while ago. While one can clearly find better, and more authentic, Chinese food down in San Francisco and Oakland, the fact remains that this place is excellent and very nice. In an area with dozens of Chinese restaurants, it stands well out over most of them.
It is, unusually, a rather classy place. The decor and atmosphere are unusually stylish and attractive, rather than gaudy or bare-bones. The service is good and attentive.
The key, of course, is that the food is worth it. It is consistently excellently prepared with strong, complex flavours, and there are some fairly unusual and interesting dishes.
Favorite Dish: Crispy Ginger chicken, mango chicken, sauteeed green beans, and sauteed pea leaves.
This is a wonderful Mexican ice cream place selling home-made ice cream and palettas (Mexican popsicles, but of a wide range of flavours, both ice/juice/sorbet kind and ice-cream based). They make many different, and creative flavours such as avocado, rose, olive oil, and more, plus regular vanilla, chocolate, etc.
This is a long-standing place in the Railroad Square area of downtown that serves large helpings of mostly mediocre standard breakfast and lunch dishes: omelettes, pancakes, sandwiches, etc. I have no problem with the type of food, since I love these things if done well. Our complaint is that execution is rather poor, crude, simple, and lacking in finesse, to say nothing of imagination. Portions are large and filling, but that's it. It's not terrible, but if one is looking for really good breakfast or lunch food of this type, go to Dierk's Park Side Cafe by Juilliard Park, at the southern edge of downtown (outstanding, varied, creative), or Mac's on the other end of 4th St, downtown (an old downtown fixture in the same place since about 1952 and far superior to this place, with great quality food, if less innovative, varied, or interesting than Park Side).
The best thing about this place is the location in an old brick building in Railroad Sq.
Favorite Dish: None. Avoid the so-called Welsh Rarebit, not deserving of the name.
I originally gave a mostly negative review of this place, but I must now say that new owners took it over more than a year ago and completely changed it. It has ever since been our favourite Thai place in town, overall, with only Sea, which is a little more upscale, being in the same league. The place itself is very nice and the location is great, being in an old building in the heart of downtown's Railroad Square area (see tip on that).
Favorite Dish: Cashew chicken, fresh or fried spring rolls, rama the king (peanut sauce).
This is, to us, overall the best doughnut place in town, and possibly the county. It also has good coffee, breakfast sandwiches, etc., the the real point is the fried bread products.
Favorite Dish: Cinnamon twists, chocolate raised, glazed old fashioned, glazed raised, are our favourites. Tastes vary, but we find that our favourite doughnut places all do certain things better than others, and these are the strong points here.
The Railroad Square area of Santa Rosa has undergone lengthy renovation and today has many small shops and restaurants making it a delightful "downtown" area to wander.
Jack and Tony's appears to be located in an earthquake retrofitted historic building. In the center of the dining room is a huge steel X-brace holding up I-beams which in turn hold the ceiling and roof.
The brick walks make for a great ambiance to enjoy their food.
Favorite Dish: Everyone at the table liked their dishes from the Steak Sandwich to the Salads, but I must say the Pulled Pork was excellent. One of the better versions I've had in a restaurant.
This is a great little pub serving a good mixture of traditional pub food with a Belizean twist added. Some of the dishes are mixed flavours, others one or the other, but everything we have had has been consistently great.
In addition, it serves local (from Petaluma) Lagunitas beer on tap. That is itself very common in this region, but what makes it stand out is that they have the wonderful Lagunitas Censored "copper" ale on tap, rather than simply the standard IPA.
They also have live music at times.
Located in wine country next to the Vintage Inn, a favorite "off site meeting" location, John Ash & Co is one of the area's outstanding venues. From the moment you arrive the host and wait staff are outstanding. They are extremely attentive without being overly intrusive.
Favorite Dish: Everything was great. My Scallops were done to perfection as was my wife's steak the accompaning sauces were tasty without being "heavy."
The Cantina in Santa Rosa was recommended by our hotel clerk as being the local favorite for great drinks and dinner. The location is nice with several location shops to browse nearby and easy street parking. While the restaurant had the size and feel of a large chain, it was a comfortable nice atmosphere. The owners also own "Cantinas" in Walnut Creek and Mill Valley so I guess you can consider this a small local chain. Service was great. We enjoyed it!
Favorite Dish: We started with margaritas and an order of super nachos that were incredible!! The Spicy Cantina beans were some of the best I've tasted. Great guacamole as well. We also ordered the mushroom spinach quesadillas with jack and asiago cheese, spinach, green onions and anaheim chiles which were also delicious.
This is a great little Italian place in the Railroad Square portion of downtown. It has great food and wine and the best cannoli I have had. They are made fresh to order.
The place can get really busy at prime hours, though.
Favorite Dish: Various. As I mentioned, the cannoli are outstanding.