La Taberna is always my first stop upon arriving in my hometown of Napa, CA. Not only to give the owner, and thank the heavens my best friend Mick Salyer a giant hug, but to get the latest scoop, and see what new and delicious pinxtos are on the menu.
I met Mick over 10 years ago, just months after he opened his first restaurant Zuzu, next door to La Taberna, and still to this day delicious and happening as ever. I was already working in restaurants and involved in the food scene, but Mick introduced me to a whole new community in Napa. People that day in and day out worked the land and soil delivering some of the worlds best produce and grapes to nearby restaurants and wineries. These are still the friendly faces I see bellied up to the bar enjoying food and conversation every night at La Taberna.
You can nibble on pig ears cut into strips and fried until crisp, or Jamon Iberico de Bellota arranged on a cutting board and served with toasted bread. There’s Yellowfin Luz Rosa, chunks of tuna coated in a thick, smoky tomato sauce and served in an oval can or Lamb Tartare. The Patatas Bravas are always a favorite of mine along with the Squid Ala Plancha.
I’ve always given Mick the title, Director of Food and Friendship. All this man wants to do is bring people together to have conversation and connect over good, honest food, hang out in a vibrant atmosphere and listen to great music. It’s his thing and he’s so good at it.
La Taberna is a place everyone wants to be, wether it’s quick for a bite and a sherry cocktail, or to hang out with friends all night sharing plates and tasting all the menu has to offer. No matter what, come as you are. La Taberna is casual and fun!