When a place is recommended by both a French concierge and a local, it is a must for a meal in my book. The view alone at Auberge Du Soleil is worth the trip. You can come just to take pictures on the terrace, but I recommend that you make a reservation for dinner and try at least the 3 course meal ($98) or the tasting menu of 6 courses ($150).
The meal begins with an amuse guele of salmon with creme fraiche on a puff pastry shell.
A very delicate way to start a meal.
To begin, we were offered a nice shot of consomme with quinoa.
This was so good, I forgot to take a picture until I had already drunk half of it!
I started with the veal sweetbreads with lemon curd,black pepper, poppy, and watercress. 
It was a picture perfect plate, with pitch perfect flavors.
Kampachi crudo, avocado, radish, cucumbers, and shitake vinaigrette was a fresh way to offer sashimi, and the fried sliver of garlic on top added a nice cooked crunch to the raw ingredients.
Heirloom tomatoes with cow’s milk ricotta, caponata, pine nuts, and black olive caramel was a twisted version of the classic. The perfectly ripe tomatoes and the use of riccota instead of burrata gave this starter an unexpectedly original flavor.
The Day boat scallop, saffron potato puree, Monterey Bay squid, hijiki, and salmon roe was an exquisite expression of rich, complex sea flavors.
Handmade tagliatelle pasta, with a ricotta stuffed squash blossom, oven roasted tomatoes and Nicoise olives was the perfect meal for the athlete in our group who was set to go on a 14 mile run the next morning. She enjoyed the combination of vegetables and pasta so much she literally cleaned the plate.
 
The seared Ahi tuna, hummus, celery, sunflower sprouts, chorizo, and pine nuts was sashimi quality fish, done with light accompaniments which enhanced the fish in both textures and tastes.
When I saw the spiced Paine Farm squab, buttermilk, grilled little gem, fried flatbread, and black garlic vinaigrette on the menu, I knew what my main course was going to be and I was not disappointed when my meal arrived. The squab was done rare and was perfectly paired with the black garlic and grilled little gem lettuce.
Pink sea salt and Maldon salt was served on the side of the squab (I used the Maldon salt) in case the squab was not seasoned to taste.
The least adventurous eater in our group took my suggestion to order the sauteed Tai snapper, glazed pork belly, braised vegetables, scallion tempura, Thai broth. It was a hit, especially once the server poured the Thai brother into the bowl.
A refreshing palate cleanser of watermelon and strawberry arrived before dessert.
The chocolate cherry fritters, Kirsch sabayon, chocolate one layer cake, and cocoa nibs was a brilliant take on the classic chocolate  covered cherries. It literally turned the dessert inside out and then added chocolate cake and ice cream. Yes, this tasted as good as it sounds!
I was pleasantly surprised to learn I didn’t have to choose between the cheeses offered, but I could get ALL of them! Served with fresh figs, dried apricots, sliced apples, and champagne grapes, the assortment of cow, goat and blue cheeses was the perfect third course for me. Even though a small sliced loaf of bread was offered I never touched it (other than to open the napkin covering it to see what was inside).
Delta blueberries, vanilla streusel cake, lemon verbana ice cream, and soft meringue was a light dessert for those who want just a few bites of various textures.
Crisp filo wrapped chocolate dumplings, tarragon ice cream, and Arbequina olive oil made the plate look like a work of art. Unfortunately the olive oil was much prettier to look at than to eat with this dessert.
As an after dinner temptation, we were given a plate of French truffles, salted caramels, and cocoa covered almonds, which we somehow ate even after finishing three courses.
As an additional gift to take home, we were each presented with a box of pate des fruits which were  concentrated explosions of fruit. I could easily eat several boxes of these!
Service was classically French, with proper silverware (fish knife for fish courses), and expert explanations of every dish. The meal was well worth the price paid, but the company of good friends was priceless.
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