For a landmark birthday of a dear friend, four of us were able to secure a reservation, exactly 60 days ahead. Two phones on auto-redial, dialing at exactly 10:00am California time did the trick, but I realize it was just luck. We were among the first seatings, so the atmosphere was a little quiet and reserved, but after a bottle of Gaston Cliquet champagne, we decided to relax and just be ourselves. The staff is very professional and well trained, but did loosen up a little as we did. Our Chef's Tasting Menu consisted of nine courses at $270.00 per person service included, three of which gave a choice option (except for the dessert choices, the other two courses had an upcharge on one of the options.) The amuse bouche was a lovely salmon tartare with chives in a crispy coronet filled with creme fraiche. It looked like a mini orange ice cream cone, but was a true bite of heaven! The first course of Oysters and Pearls (Caviar) was delicious and the second course option of Carnaroli Risotto Biologico was the piece de resistance of the meal (at 150.00 extra per person.) It was creamy risotto with Beurre Noisette, Castelmagno Nuage and Shaved White Truffles. The truffles were presented with the risotto and then shaved into the dish in front of you. What splendor! Following courses were Grilled Fillet of Japanese Hamachi, Sweet Butter-Poached Maine Lobster Fricassee, Liberty Farm Pekin Duck, Elysian Fields Farm Lamb Saddle, "Tomme de Savoie," consisting of Hobbs Bacon, Brussel Sprouts, Chestnuts, and Honey-Poached Cranberries, a palate cleanser of Plum-Ginger Soda and then a choice of either Chocolate Torte with Pecans, Whipped Cinnamon and Banana Ice Cream OR Strawberries and Custard consisting of lemon custard, compressed strawberries and Swiss Meringue. Afterwards, we were offered chocolate truffles and other bite sized sweets, compliments of the restaurant. We were taken on a kitchen tour as a post dinner treat. The serving sizes are quite small, thank goodness, because there are nine courses and the food is a little rich. As for the wine list, it is extensive and expensive. It has been converted to an Ipad and would take days to study. We simplified matters by requesting wines under $200.00 and that eliminated a large portion of the list. The sommelier was very cooperative in assisting with our price point and selections. One bottle of champagne for toasts, 2 glasses of Spreitzer Riesling 2007, 2 glasses of Fichet Meursault 2010 and one bottle of Veyder Gruner Veltiner Hoch 2010 with the opening and fish courses, a bottle of Cobb Jack Hill Pinot Noir 2007 from Sonoma (delicious!) with the meats and 2 glasses of Disznoko Tokaji 2000 with dessert. Grand total for the wines, $732.00, not bad. In retrospect, everything was delicious, but some courses more memorable than others. French Laundry is well worth the experience, but for me, a place where I would go for landmark occasions as it is extremely expensive.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.