Disney Date Night: Napa Rose at Disney's Grand California Hotel & Spa
My husband, MacSparky, proposed to me at Club 33 -Disneyland, 22 years ago. To celebrate the memorable moment, we go have a fancy meal at Disneyland every July 3rd. We started taking our kids with us about 10 years and now refer to July 3rd as "Sparks Day". With Sparks being our last name and July 4th, it's become a time to celebrate of our little family. We discovered the Napa Rose about 5 years go and it is now our annual Sparks Day tradition.
We actually ended up having our family celebration a day early due to scheduling conflicts. I have it my calendar as to when I can call to make reservations. We usually request the Chef's Table and we sit right in front of the kitchen. This year we decided to change it up by getting the first seating and sit on the dessert side.
There are two seating times for the Chef's Table. We've never done the first seating time so it was fun to see the kitchen get going. Executive Napa Rose Chef, Andrew Sutton, even stopped by to greet us and talked to us for a little bit. I think he checked in as service was beginning because we didn't see him again in the kitchen during our meal. In the past years, Andrew has been active in the kitchen. He's now oversees both Club 33 and the Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge in addition to Napa Rose so he is pretty busy.
The food offerings are Napa Rose are simply "oh-so-delicious". The menu items are carefully planned by the chef and his team. They are very thoughtful about using ingredients that are in season, available locally, and prepare them in such way to compliment the time of year. Here are some photos of the menu and some things we saw from where we sat.
My kids are 13 and 18. They love going out to eat and are not afraid of a food adventure. As a result, they have a sophisticated palate and enjoy fine dinning experiences. One ordered a seasonal salad and scallops as her entree while my other daughter had the filet with chive mashed potatoes. We ordered the Truffle Mac & Cheese to share between all of us....and it was as delicious as it looks.
MacSparky's most favorite all time dish is Napa Rose's Smiling Tiger Salad. That's all he talks about when we get ready to go. He will always order this when we go. It is one of the signature and customer favorites from Napa Rose. MacSparky went for a theme as he ordered the Berkshire Pork Lion and Laughing Bird Shrimp.
I usually order the Vintner's Menu which is a 4-course tasting menu. This year I requested the Chef's Menu...which is almost the same as the Vintner's Menu but the chef visits with you to ask about your food preferences and prepares a 4 or 5 course meal for you. I don't have food allergies and am not very picky about what I will not eat. I ended up with a little bit of everything off of the menu and I didn't know what I would get until it was brought to me. A couple of the dishes were actually straight from the menu.
We had a great time visiting with Chef Gloria Tae who we see every year. She created this beautiful summer salad for my husband. It was very hearty with heirloom tomatoes, tuna tartare and lots of deliciousness on the side.
Napa Rose is also known for their extensive wine selection. A number of the servers are sommeliers so they can help you with any food pairing or questions about their wine offerings. I have ordered a flight of wine in prior years. I did order a glass of MacMurry Ranch Pinot Noir to go with my meal.
Before you enter the main dining area, you can view some of the fun wine bottles they have on display. You may recognize some of these.
We had to have dessert. Although we were pretty full, my family decided that they had room for some delicious ice cream and sorbet.
Our server this year was, Mickey. He was super attentive and entertaining, too. He gave my kids a little lesson in pouring wine. He was very helpful is assisting with our menu selections. The dessert sous chefs, Janae and Chelsea explained the dishes that they were preparing. They were also very good about answering some of our general questions that were related to what was happening in the kitchen.
We had another fabulous and memorable Sparks Day celebration at Napa Rose. They even sent us home with some special chocolate boxes. We'll be back next year. Thank you, Napa Rose!