Calistoga, the "Saratoga Springs of California," seems to be having a tough time of it these days. Linda and I are here in mid-May (2013) just at the start of the tourist season, and there are a few too many vacancies along Lincoln Ave, the town's main drag, and slightly too few diners in the restaurants.
The "up side" of this is that it's very easy to get seated in the area's many dining spots. And parking (three hours, free) is a breeze.
We ate at several places right on Lincoln and the All Seasons Bistro was the most enjoyable. The host, who told us his name was Raza, greeted us as we entered and seated us right in the window. Our server Ingrid took great care of us too. Ambiance is clean and functional, not fancy like Brannan's, the more upscale style place on the adjacent corner; the food was very good here and the portions ample.
We started with a salad of organic local greens that featured a strawberry vinaigrette dressing and chunks of fresh strawberries. I enjoyed it more than I expected; fruit salads are not generally my thing. Linda and I shared a selection of small plates: the crab cakes were great, the barbequed ribs likewise. The only letdown was the lobster bisque, which was rich and served in a bowl large enough to feed four, but lacked flavor. A smaller bowl with proportionately more lobster would have been better.
Calistoga is a great place to spend a weekend or more. Spa's, mud baths,pools and massage studios are plentiful, wineries with tours and tasting rooms are all around, the scenery is wonderful. The town is far from crowded these days and the atmosphere is relaxed. Of the places we tried, All Seasons Bistro is the one we'd be most likely to revisit, and more than once at that.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.