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Sonoma County Gazette
Photo: Maureen McTaggart
Photo: Maureen McTaggart

Restaurant Week - Come Dine Out at Eateries along the Russian River

Mar 4, 2019


By Maureen McTaggart

The month of March kicks off with Sonoma County Restaurant Week.

Coincidentally, Monte Rio just happens to have a new restaurant opening so it seems appropriate to write an article focusing on food.

On Friday, March 1, THE  place to go will be the Village Inn for the highly anticipated opening of the Rio Bistro. Yes – the wait is finally over and I’m looking forward to checking it out. This latest venture by Paul and Alain of  Rio Café & Grill will showcase hearty country comfort food at an affordable price. I hope they will also have Scoop of Sonoma ice cream on the menu. See you at the VI!

Curtain Call Theater - Spike HeelsAfter dinner head on over to the Curtain Call Theater  for the opening night of “Spike Heels”(Yes, that’s 2 openings on the same night ) Billed as “ Shoes, sex and power on display” Artistic Director Michael Tabib and his talented troupe have put together a play that they promise will  “ knock your socks off”.Spike Heels opening has been postponed one week because of the floods so will atar March 8.

On March 2,  Northwood Restaurant will be hosting a Marci Gras party. Go early and enjoy the Prime Rib dinner special for only $19.99. Combined with live music this is a popular place to be on Friday and Saturday nights. The restaurant is also open for breakfast and lunch. 

On Monday, March 4,  Friends of Monte Rio Supper Club will feature guest chef Bree Ann Leighton and a menu focusing on Middle Eastern Cuisine. Grab your friends and come on down to the Community Center. BYOB and a glass. Doors open at 6:00.
Wow! that’s a lot going on in just the first week – but there’s more.

Have you checked out  Lightwave Coffee and Kitchen at Creekside Skate Park? Situated amongst the redwoods new owners Ori and his wife Gal are serving a menu based on Israeli and Middle Eastern cuisine. They also serve pastries, soups, hot drinks and smoothies, cure lox in house and sell their own coffee roast. I’m a novice when it comes to Middle Eastern cuisine but I’m looking forward to trying the Shakshuka. I’ve heard it’s very good and very popular.  The name Lightwave comes from a combination of the owner's names. Ori means light and Gal means wave. Did I mention that they are newlyweds? They took a few days off last month and got married! Congratulations Ori and Gal!  They have plans for live entertainment featuring local talent starting soon – possibly as early as this month. They’ve put up a nice screen to keep the café warm and cozy on cold and rainy days. And it seems to be working- I was there on a wet day and the people at the café were clearly enjoying the inside ambiance. Lightwave is open daily from 8am to 5pm.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Bia Café at Northwood. Don’t let the small space fool you. Owner Kari Kemp bakes homemade breads and cakes from family recipes Try the Irish Soda Bread or cinnamon swirl cake. Both are seriously delicious. Breakfast and lunch paninis and amazing salmon chowder soup round out the menu. Everything is served with Kari’s special brand of humor at no extra charge. I always leave there smiling.

Make a right turn at the Welcome to Monte Rio Vacation Wonderland sign and you will find Lucy’s Lounge and Grill. Stop in for breakfast and try the French toast with mandarin orange slices and slivered almonds- definitely add the real maple syrup option! Lucy’s is also open for lunch and the bar in back is a gathering spot for locals in the evenings. 

Not in Monte Rio – but worth a short drive

Waffle breakfast Cape Fear Café in Duncans MillsCape Fear Café in Duncan’s Mills. California cuisine with a southern flair.  Dine on the outdoor patio if the weather is nice and sample one of their weekend brunch “ Benedict’s “ or try the shrimp and grits at dinner.

Also in Duncan Mills -  Blue Heron Restaurant and Tavern – amazing crab cakes and music on the patio in the summer.

River’s End in Jenner is a great spot to take in dinner and watch the sunset. Try their Pub menu on Mondays or locals night staff meal on Tuesdays.

So next time you’re thinking of eating out – dine in town and help support our local businesses. You’ll be glad you did.


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