Farm-to-table isn’t just a trend in Sonoma County; it’s a way of life. For decades, the bounties of the region — from produce to whole animal meats and even line-caught fish — have been inspiring chefs all over the world. For those lucky enough to set up shop in the heart of it all, they get access to farm fresh eggs, hand-tended gardens, grass-raised cows, and fresh oysters all in their own backyard.
Basically, if you’re looking for farm-to-table cuisine in Sonoma, all you have to do is walk into the nearest restaurant. Because there are so many options, we rounded up the county’s essentials (listed in no particular order) including everything from elevated pub food to prix fixe tasting menus. Schedule your reservations at our top 20, pair the meal with a wine made down the road, and don’t forget to let us know which spot was your favorite!
Glen Ellen is already a cozy little town in Sonoma County, but when you add Glen Ellen Star to the itinerary, you get double the character and double the charm. Designed for people who love food by people who love food, their kitchen specializes in a wood-fire cooking technique that brings out the best flavors of their California-inspired dishes. The culinary team sources ingredients from nearby gardens and local producers to create daily menus. Say hello next time you see them at the market!
At Zazu, they start with seeds in the ground and raising animals sustainably. By the time their ingredients get to the kitchen, they use the entire animal and the freshest produce combined by chefs who are all trained as butchers. On the menu, you’ll find dishes inspired by what was picked from the garden that day and prepared in ways that allow the natural flavors to shine. As local as local gets, this is a must-try in Sebastopol.
The Girl and the Fig isn’t just home to one of the best farm-to-table menus in Sonoma; they also have the best garden patio to take your meal to the next level! After you’ve fallen in love with their menu of country food with a French passion, check out their foundation. Sonoma FIG Foundation is a program that supports nonprofits and entrepreneurs in food, farming, food media, wine and spirits, restaurants, and artisanal food production.
Healdsburg hospitality, picturesque dishes and fresh ingredients come together in this colorful barn. At Barndiva, the motto is “eat the view” and you can’t eat the view without knowing who has grown it and who has raised the animals grazing on it. On the grounds, you’ll find the restaurant, the garden, the art gallery and the Somm’s Table, a salon that takes wine tasting to a whole new, inspired world.
At Flower + Bone, you have the opportunity to enjoy the Tasting Menu, what they call “the full story,” or the Mezze Menu, a menu of shareable, a la carte dishes. Inspired by the tastes of Central Asia, each menu is filled with innovative flavors and ingredients sourced from Sonoma’s and the restaurant’s backyard. But the Tasting Menu is the best representation of farm-to-table fare — a curated, daily changing menu designed and cooked by owner Dalia Martinez herself.
Whether you’re eating Wild California White Bass, Buttermilk Fried Chicken, or Heirloom Carrot and Summer Squash Latkes at Backyard, you know each fruit, vegetable and animal is grown, raised or line-caught locally. With plenty of vegetarian dishes available, all the Sonoma County bounties are represented on this restaurant’s daily-changing menu — and you even get to see which area farms are represented!
This West Sonoma County restaurant specializes in all organic, local and sustainably-produced ingredients and meals — all served in one of the most beautiful open air dining rooms in the region. Inspired by the tastes of Italy, you can eat breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner with selections such as Salmon Crudo, a Tempeh Reuben and Riso di Nonna, which is brown rice and a poached egg served with seasonal pesto, preserved lemon and red onion.
The Spinster Sisters is all about local — from the ingredients in the dishes to the art hanging on the walls. Using ingredients from only Sonoma County producers, chef Liza Hinman creates an evolving menu of original dishes inspired by flavors and traditions from around the world. And while you’re tasting them for yourself, you can discuss the rotating selection of gallery art, peruse the library wall and catch up on local events in the community corner!
At Rosso, they pair a wine list of over 100 wines from around the world with only local ingredients to make a meal worth writing home about. The Tuscan wood-burning oven creates true Neapolitan pizzas with crisp, yeasty crusts. The original Santa Rosa location opened in 2007, but you can taste even more pizza and wine at their second location, Rosso Pizzeria & Mozzarella Bar which opened in Petaluma in 2012.
The Farmhouse restaurant at the award-winning Farmhouse Inn is the brainchild of two fifth generation Sonoma farmers, a Michelin starred chef, a world class maitre d’ and a team of sommeliers. It comes as no surprise then that they produce some of the best food in the county. The innovative and delicious offerings are created with ingredients sourced from Joe and Catherine’s Bartolomei ranch as well as local artisan farmers so you can taste the best of Sonoma as it was meant to be eaten.
With the intimate charm of a small town, the hospitality that wine country has become famous for, and a menu packed with local offerings, Dry Creek Kitchen is a must-visit in Healdsburg. Get a spot on the garden terrace if you can and order the Sonoma Neighbor Menu, which is paired with local wines alongside local bounty!
Between the two of them, chefs Casey and Patrick Van Voorhis have collected culinary experience in Yountville, San Francisco and West Virginia, and both attended the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. Now, with Spoonbar, they combine their expertise and creativity to create the restaurant’s market-driven menu. On it, you’ll find locally sourced classics like carrots, shelling beans and roast chicken alongside innovative additions like brown butter egg yolk and grilled lemon.
Executive Chef Shane McAnelly’s daily-changing menu of small plates is inspired by produce from a dedicated three-acre garden, and is then paired with local wine flights and inventive cocktails. Highlighting Crudos, freshly picked salads, handmade pastas, roasted and grilled meats, seafood, and scrumptious desserts, the fresh ingredients come together from every corner of Sonoma County.
From artisan cheeses and local meats to farm fresh produce picked from their own backyard, the team at Boon believes great food comes from using deliciously fresh and seasonal ingredients, and not doing much to alter them. On their seasonal menu of simple but elegant creations, you’ll find green plates, small plates and main plates, including Seared Halibut, Polenta Lasagna and Chili Braised Pork.
Owners and chefs Nick and Jen Demarest met when studying at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. Since then, they’ve gained experience in biodynamic farming in Upstate New York, hospitality at a private lodge in the Texas hill country, and kitchen management at East Bay’s Chez Panisse and BayWolf. Inspired by the local bounty and a passion for sustainability, their Sonoma restaurant features the best of the region — from meat and fish to produce and wines.
The humble label “pub food” doesn’t do the Pub Republic menu justice. Though the casual atmosphere and comfort food classics will make you feel at home, the flavors and preparations will surprise you with every bite. Come by for lunch, dinner and weekend brunch to taste what they call urban pub cuisine made with high-quality, local and fresh ingredients. If it’s available, we suggest the Brick Chicken & Brussels Sprout Bacon Hash.
When you think of southern comfort food, you may not immediately think farm-to-table, but at Rocker Oysterfeller’s in Valley Ford they do. Featuring Dollar Oyster Thursdays, Fish Taco Fridays and Live Music Sundays, your meal comes with a side of fun and hospitality. Stop by their cozy public house and test it out for yourself!
The food at Sweet T’s is reminiscent of the family’s Southern roots while embracing the team’s love for Sonoma County. To showcase both, they use locally-sourced ingredients to create dishes like the Catfish Po’ Boy, Pork Back Ribs, Shrimp Gumbo and their famous Free Range Deviled Eggs. Pair it with an inventive beverage from their cocktail menu and get ready for a meal you won’t soon forget!
Sunflower Caffé is dedicated to local ingredients every step of the way. They use salt from the San Francisco Bay, milk from cows grazing in Sonoma County pastures, and eggs from a farm less than five miles from your table. Housed in the historic home of Salvador Vallejo in Sonoma, the team combines all this to inspire a seasonal menu of brunch classics that will make you want to brunch every single day of the week!
Only in Sonoma will you find a modern Asian sushi spot inspired by farm-to-table fare. Motivated by Japan’s environmentally conscious culture, Chef Metcalfe’s original creations highlight regionally-sourced products and a huge selection of seasonal ingredients harvested from Shiso’s own culinary garden. From the sashimi to the saké, you’ll be impressed with every handcrafted bite and every sip.
Share your favorites
Sonoma County is filled with outstanding farm-to-table restaurants! Let us know which ones are on your must-try list in the comments.