Napa Nibbles: a|k|a a Bistro names new exec chef, new seasonal menu items at Bouchon Bakery

by TrevR on October 26, 2009

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While most in these parts are focused on finishing up harvest, two local dining establishments made announcements today.

Trick or Treat: Pumpkin Cupcakes from Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bakery in Yountville

Trick or Treat: Pumpkin Cupcakes from Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bakery in Yountville

David Frakes named Executive Chef at St. Helena’s a|k|a a Bistro
The man who spent the past 13 years as executive chef at Beringer Vineyards has been named to the same post at St. Helena’s a|k|a a Bistro. David Frakes steps into the kitchen, where he’ll keep a couple of the restauant’s signature dishes, with plans to revamp the menu in his own style. Diners will note a new appetizer on the menu, a golden and red beet terrine with a Pt. Reyes blue cheese center, served with mache and frisee, as well as an ‘herbed beggar’s purse’, which is a a crepe filled with goat cheese, confit of olive and roasted pepper with saffron-grain mustard vinaigrette.

Frakes is also spearheading a new project in conjunction with the neighboring Cameo Cinema, which will be screening Where The Wild Things Are (10/30 – 11/5). a|k|a will offer a ‘Wild Things’ menu, which will include freshly pulled made to order warm mozzarella with pickled wild mushrooms, roasted pearl onions, smoked paprika vinaigrette; a second course of penne with wild boar ragout and warm wild huckleberry clafoutis with lemon verbena sorbet in a wild rice tuile for dessert ($35). The menu will continue every Tuesday until the end of 2009.

New seasonal menu items added at Yountville’s Bouchon Bakery
In Yountville, Thomas Keller’s ever-popular Bouchon Bakery has just added several new menu items to celebrate Fall and the Halloween season. In no particular order, here are the additions:

  • Caramel Apple: Fresh, crisp apple smothered in house made caramel ($5.75 each)
  • Spider Cookies: Homemade shortbread cookies festively decorated with fondant ($3.50 each)
  • Bat TKO’s: Crisp, bat-shaped chocolate cookies filled with sweet white chocolate ganache ($3 each)
  • Pumpkin Cupcake: Devils food cupcakes shaped as a pumpkin, complete with a rich, cream cheese center and finished with fondant ($9 each)
  • Pumpkin Brittle: Classic brittle fused with pumpkin seeds ($5 per bag)

[techtags: Napa, Napa Valley, wine, winery, aka a bistro, St. Helena, Bouchon Bakery, Yountville, David Frakes, Thomas Keller]

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has written 726 posts on The Cork Board. He was born and aged in the Napa Valley and has a passion for wine, writing and social media, which led him to co-found this blog in early 2007. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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