New to the fine dining scene in Calistoga
As rows of grapevines flashed their autumn brilliance, wine country’s newest fine dining experience made its debut at the Four Seasons Resort and Residences Napa Valley in Calistoga. Enter Auro. Guests enter—quite literally—via the vaulted TRUSS restaurant and fireside lounge to the more intimate concept beyond.
Spaces and functions blend seamlessly. Beside the chef’s table, a glass wall provides an intimate view of the action in an open kitchen where Executive Chef Rogelio Garcia and the talented culinary team prepare a seasonally inspired five-course tasting menu. Floor-to-ceiling glass sliding doors let out onto the terrace against a backdrop of vineyards and mountains. The dining room interior is composed of dark woods, landscape-inspired hues, and muted earthy tones to complement the resort’s setting. In fact, the entire property was conceived around an existing 4.7-acre vineyard and winery, Elusa, the onsite brainchild of superstar winemaker and consultant Thomas Rivers Brown.
Executive Chef Rogelio Garcia is a busy man in the spotlight. A former contestant on Bravo’s “Top Chef Season 15,” with a stellar pedigree that includes The French Laundry and Spruce, Garcia is at the helm of both Auro and TRUSS. He explains, “This menu is a tribute to my evolution as a chef. Little did I know that an after-school job as a dishwasher in Yountville would grow into a passion and eventually, a career.”
Related — Napa-Inspired: TRUSS Restaurant + Bar
At Auro, Chef Garcia’s weekly-changing menu showcases hyper-seasonal local cuisine prepared with global culinary techniques. He shares that “this menu begins in the fields and farms of Northern California. It captures my joy of ingredient sourcing; the excitement of beginning a new season; the smell of the sea and the soil; and my friendships with our ranchers, farmers, and fishermen.”
Each tasting menu dish is accompanied by a dedicated world-class wine in a program curated by the accomplished Sommelier Derek Stevenson. His selections come from an extensive cellar of 250 labels with a local emphasis designed to embrace the regional Calistoga community and support the resourceful individuals within its dynamic wine industry.
While wonderful, fresh food is the star of the show and wine plays a masterful supporting role, Auro’s thoughtful presentations—sometimes whimsical, sometimes elegant—prompted plenty of conversation around the table.
On a recent visit, some favorite dishes included a most impressive Norwegian king crab, Calabrese saucisson, fennel, Yukon gold potatoes served with a 2021 Arnot-Roberts Rosé from Healdsburg. Meat lovers swooned over a lean, perfect rectangle of delicious Kagoshima A5 Wagyu, spinach, matsutake, Périgord truffle bordelaise paired with an outstanding 2014 Mayacamas Cabernet Sauvignon from Mt. Veeder. The finale of Gianduja chocolate pave with hazelnut praline was conceived with a lacy dentelle and plated to match, complemented by Quinta Do Noval, a 10-year-old Tawny Port.
Hours: Thursday – Saturday, 5:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.