Restaurant Review - September 8, 2005 - Joanne
231 Center St., Healdsburg, CA
Barndiva is one of the hot upbeat locales in Healdsburg and is renowned for their cocktails and small plates. It’s housed in a big red barnish looking building - hence the name. We’d been there for a Slow Food event, just before it opened and it was time to go for a real dinner. We decided on an early quick dinner for our first visit.
Open Wednesday thru Sunday
(from Lunch til late hours - a rarity in Healdsburg)
The space is open and bright (but not too bright). The bar is cool-looking and the space is comfortable. It feels like a place you could hang out. The gardens in the back are lovely in an architectural sort of way and there is outside seating.
The bar menu is substantial and the bar is well stocked. The bartender we had definitely knew what he was doing, which is not as common as you might think. In contrast Jack thought the menu was exceedingly ugly and hard to read. But the overall food experience we had was excellent. There is special care taken to choose the best menu ingredients with most - if not all - sustainable sources and many of them local. (Their menu page has link listing many of their sources.)
We’ll be back and soon!
What we had:
Goat Croquettes with House-made Tomato Jam and Local Organic Honey $10.50
The tomato jam is mixed with goat cheese and made into balls, coated and fried. Absolutely divine with the honey. It was hard not to re-order them.
Crispy Sonoma Saveur Duck, watercress and Sesame Soy $9
Duck is shredded and coated in the sauce then served on top of the watercress.
The duck is crispy, tasty and slightly spicy. Watercress was large-leaf but great with this dish.
Grilled Wild Alaskan Halibut with Black Rice, Corn Salsa and Basil Crème
Perfectly cooked. Crisp exterior. Delicious! What a beautiful piece of halibut! (- Jack)
Charcuterie (Nopletani, Sporesetta, Cacciatore Affumicato, Smoked Duck Breast) with Duck Breast Prosciutto and House-made Chicken Liver Mousse - with Della Fattoria Bread, Cornichons and Mustards $25
The dish comes with 3 mustards and large caper berries as well as cornichons. The charcuterie was from Fabrique Delices and Niman Ranch.
Caramelized Minced Pork Balls in Crunchy Lettuce Cups with Sweet Chili Sauce $14
This dish was recommended by our waiter. The chili sauce was spicy and syrupy and really great with the pork balls.