Best of the Best 2016: Leisure | Dining: Ninebark
Matthew Lightner, a veteran of the Michelin two-star Atera in New York City, has brought more star power to Napa Valley. At his new restaurant, in a century-old brick building in downtown Napa, Lightner is earning raves for surprising combinations such as charred broccoli arranged over green goddess dressing and covered with a thick snowfall of smoked cheddar. He uses carrots in pimiento spread and adds numbing Sichuan peppercorns to crab toast.
- The pickle plate, made with about a dozen fruits and vegetables, summarizes the best of Napa produce.
- The restaurant features a bar on the first floor, the second-floor dining room, and a roof terrace overlooking the Napa River.
- Ninebark is named after an indigenous shrub.
Ninebark, ninebark-napa.com (main courses, $28–$38)