Santa Rosa's South A neighborhood is in a constant state of near- and almost-revival, but the Spinster Sisters might just complete the task. Everyone, it seems, is talking about this new restaurant.
On a recent visit, casually dressed folks sat around the expansive bar, sipping wine and nibbling on small plates of olives, ricotta and calamari; the ambiance only improved at sundown, when ceiling lamps began glowing softly.
The food is "new American," and it's made in a kitchen helmed by former Santi chef Liza Hinman. To start, we ordered the deviled egg with bacon and kimchi ($3) and a warm, heavenly goat-cheese crottin with caramelized figs, arugula and grilled sourdough ($11). When I admitted to the server that I didn't know how to pronounce "crottin," rather than making me feel like a dunce, she said, "Don't worry, I don't know how to pronounce it either!"
We paired the meal with a Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA ($6), one of many quality beers on draft. Small plates shared family-style seem to be the way to go here, but we also ordered the crispy chicken thighs with white beans, arugula, grilled nectarines ($16) and the grilled hangar steak with roasted corn cake, tomato and avocado salad ($21). Crispy Kennebec fries, made-to-order and served with a tangy and sweet sauce ($6), completed the meal. This is definitely a restaurant that merits a return visit.
Spinster Sisters, 401 South A St., Santa Rosa. Open Tuesday–Friday, 7am–10pm; Saturday–Sunday, 9am–10pm. 707.528.7100.—Leilani Clark