403 Healdsburg Avenue
Healdsburg, CA 95448
Charred Rare Ahi, Cucumber, Avocado, Truffled Soy $9.50
Jack ordered it and it never arrived.
Ceviche of crab $8
Lisa sent it back. Too much dressing – no crab like flavor left. She ordered the Sturgeon instead.
New England Style "Rolls"
Warm Maine Lobster with Garlic Butter & Fennel $13
This was good but not a star.
Fried Oysters, House-Made Lemon Tartar Sauce $9.5
Wow. The lemon tarter shines and the oysters were extra crunchy. Just lettuce mayo and a roll. Really tasty. Well Done!
Miso Glazed California Sturgeon, Caramelized Eggplant , Ginger Vinaigrette $10.50
Fish didn’t taste that fresh and was overcooked. Enh.
Willi's French Fries, Laura Chenel Goat Cheese Ranch $6
Crispy hand cut fries but nothing special. Dip ok but not over the top in any way.
Baked Goat Cheese, Roasted Garlic & Sundried Tomatoes $9
Others ate about ½ and it wasn’t mentioned in conversation…
Clam & Garlic Flatbread with Bacon & Green Onions $7.50
Most of this was consumed – there were a couple of oohs went it arrived. Looked like a freeform clam and bacon pizza.
Manilla Clam "Steamers" $11
Warm Sourdough with Garlic Parsley Butter $2.50
We usually detest sourdough. This was the steakhouse breadlover’s delight. The butter had enough garlic to steamroll any character of the bread other than it was heated to crispy perfection. A very tasty surprise.
The Raw Bar
On the Half Shell
I ordered 3 Belon, 2 Olympia and 2 BluePoint. The Olympia were the stars. They were sweet and with all the wonderful fresh characteristics you give to the perfect oyster. The Belon were flater tasting, fresh but not so distinctive. The Blue Point I found salty – this obscuring some of the oysteryness.
Belon, Discovery Bay, Washington $3 each Olympia, Puget Sound, Washington
Native oyster, slightly salty, sweet, delicate metallic finish. $2.25 each Blue Point, Long Island, New York
Most famous of all ½ shell oysters, plump, sweet finish. $2 each
Little Neck Clams, Cape Cod, Massachusetts
The classic 1/2 shell clam. $2 each Half Chilled Maine Lobster $15
Jack didn’t finish the legs and while he ate it – it got no raves from him. Our standards are very high for lobster. This is not the place to indulge.
We ordered the Donut Holes to go. The inside of the car smelled like a French fryer. They were good sized rolled in powered sugar and came with a pleasant lemon curd.
Five Spiced Donut Holes with Lemon Curd
Warm Pear & Berry Crisp Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
Pretty balanced. Not too sweet, nice crunchy top. Lisa & I detected Rhubarb. I thought also raspberry and of course pear.
Bev's Mud Slide Milk Shake Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, Kahlua & Bailey's Irish Cream
This is what it is. The milk shake comes with 2 Chocolate crackle cookies dusted with powered sugar. The milk shake is solid, tasty but again no over the top features.
Update Fall, 2005: Tim Andre is the new Chef de Cuisine at Willi's Seafood.
We have had a number plesant lunches and dinners there since August, 2005
when he became the new chef and will be updating the review here shortly. One of the highlights from our last lunch was the Miso Glazed Sturgeon which Jack was very happy to not share.
Update August, 2006: We've dined here more than six times now. The food is still just good. Oysters and clam quality is excellent and, is why Jack goes. The wine list matches the food poorly, still(!), but at least they have two top local wines, Rochioli pinot noir and Rafanelli cabernet on the list now. When will they discover Muscadet?
You may notice that we do not give out a lot of praise. Having been to so many high-quality restaurants, it's pretty tough to impress us.
Most of our reviews are based on just one visit. We neither have the time nor the money (or often, the inclination) to visit most restaurants multiple times. So, please keep in mind that a single-visit review is a snapshot - the restaurant may be "on it" that day - or not. If the meal has a calamity involved (foreign objects in the food, wine poured on us, etc.) we try not to let it shade the overall review.
We pay for the food and beverages; restaurants never comp us. We try to be discreet about taking photos so that the staff doesn't notice/get an idea we're going to do a review. We rarely take notes in the restaurant.
Like the rest of our website, we update our restaurant review pages based upon subsequent visits.