MICHELIN Guide’s Point Of View
Izakaya fare gets Californian flair at this downtown Napa site, which has a distinctive and minimalist look inspired by several trips to Japan. A buzzy crowd of locals fills the wooden booths and tables, while an arrow-shaped bar is a major draw for solo diners. A variety of skewered chicken parts grilled over the white-hot binchotan are the highlight of the menu-imagine the likes of succulent and smoky chicken thighs, or springy tsukune in an umami-rich tare glaze. A handful of seats at the narrow counter allow guests to chat with the grill cook. The rest of the menu emphasizes local produce, including rice and noodle bowls stuffed with seasonal vegetables; crunchy sweet corn fritters with Kewpie mayo; as well as gingery pan-fried chicken gyoza.