A restaurant gem in Saint Helena

A restaurant gem in Saint Helena

Napa Valley has more than its fair share of restaurants that are suitable for a special occasion.  Our cousin Patricia recently turned 18 and we wanted to pick a unique place to commemorate this milestone birthday, especially since she was 7,000 miles away from home.  Ultimately we decided that Market in Saint Helena would be the perfect spot, but not for the reasons you might expect.  Sure, the ambience is lively and fun and the interior space is lovely and conducive to a special night out.

market interior.jpg
Warm and cozy Market restaurant in Saint Helena

And for those that are partial to healthy, farm-to-table ingredients, Market does not disappoint.

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The chef in his garden

You might also pick Market to celebrate a special night out for its inventive and delicious dishes.

Hopefully we won’t sound lame if we admit that we chose Market in large part for the dessert.  More about that later, though.

There were seven of us at dinner which gave us a chance to order most of the classic entrées as well as several of Market’s yummy appetizers.  Our very first dish was the Chopped Market Salad, a delicious, fresh, crispy salad to kick off the meal.

Health food

This healthy option was quickly followed by the crispy calamari, which is served with a couple of tasty dipping sauces.

market calamari
A real treat

For our final shared appetizer we ordered lobster rolls which come delicately wrapped in rice paper and served with a delicious mint-basil dipping sauce.


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Not your average lobster roll


Our main dishes ran the gamut from meat to mollusk and fish to fowl.

Baby Back Ribs


Day Boat Scallops in cauliflower puree
Prince Edward Island Mussels with garlic fries
Wild King Salmon
Fried chicken with mashed potatoes and corn bread
Mascarpone and asparagus ravioli

Market’s Executive Chef (and co-owner) Ernesto Martinez has a way with food, we have to say!  The commitment to local and sustainable ingredients comes across in each dish, as does his sense of adventure and creativity.  It was probably our third or fourth time eating at Market and we enjoyed dinner as much as any of our previous visits.  Our cousins from Spain particularly enjoyed dinner as the food was not only well prepared and creative but classically American and fun.  Market offers dishes like mac & cheese and fried chicken, but both are definitely for grown-ups and quality as cuisine.

So what about dessert?  If you’re expecting us to say we chose Market because of a fancy dessert – delicate mousse or a panna cotta – well, no.  We decided to take Patricia to Market because of a fun – and quintessentially American – dessert: s’mores.  Each time we have dined at Market we finished our meal with the s’mores (marshmallow, chocolate, graham cracker, and, of course, some flame).

White table-cloth cookout

Hey, we know it’s not camping but it still is a lot of fun.

They seem to like it

We should mention that Market has other items on their dessert menu that are worth trying as well, but we recommend at least one person order the s’mores.

John & Irene Ingersoll

August 26, 2017


**All poorly lit and executed pictures were taken by us with our iPhone.  The high-quality pictures in this blog are from Market’s website:  Market Saint Helena





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