A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, California

#HilaryRowland

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

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Farm-to-Table Restaurants

The food in Healdsburg is world-class, and most restaurants pride themselves on shopping from local, organic farms, or growing their own produce. To boot, pretty much all of the restaurants in town have a lot of creative vegetarian and vegan options.

Dinner at Spoonbar, in the H2 Hotel, rivaled the best meals I’ve had in New York City and Paris. Seriously. We told the waitress that we didn’t want to eat anything that came from an animal. We got no complaints. What their fabulous woman chef, Casey Van Voorhis, cooked for us, shocked us. You’d never guess that the recipes had been modified, they were so delicious.

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

Spoonbar, at the LEED gold certified H2 Hotel

Our waitress, who was excellent, suggested we pair the seasonal dishes she served us with a fantastic biodynamic wine from a local winery called Medlock Ames. She explained that the winery is carbon-neutral, and gave us the curious backstory behind how their tasting room used to be a super-seedy biker bar. It ended up being one of the best meals I can remember having — ever. The sophisticated dishes were Michelin-star quality. Really. And I’m picky!

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

Wood and concrete work together in harmony to create a cosy, industrial-chic setting at Spoonbar

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

Pan seared scallops with brassicas, green and black garlic and sunflower at Spoonbar

If you’re looking for a restaurant with a more home-cooked feel, try Italian restaurant Campo Fina. The Italian owner, Ari Rosen, cooks from the heart. The menu at Campo Fina was inspired by his childhood in Tuscany. Many of the recipes are his family and friend’s ‘secret’ recipes — and each dish has its own sentimental story attached to it. As per usual in Healdsburg, all the produce is from farms within a five mile radius of the restaurant, and biodynamic wine options abound. They even bake their own bread. In the back garden is a bocci ball court, stone oven, ample seating, and string lights. It’s allllmost as charming as its owner. 😉

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

The owner of Campo Fina, Ari Rosen, looks like a caricature of an Italian hunk

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

Try the delicious artichoke salad at Campo Fina

In the mood for Mexican? Or how about a mezcal, tequila or reserve anejo tasting? Mateo’s Cocina Latina has a fantastic grilled tempeh dish that the chef’s bestie (the drummer from the band The Killers) convinced him to make. The dish is called “Alive & Healing Sonoma County Tempeh” caramelized with seasonal vegetables, pumpkin seed and bell pepper sauce. Follow it up with one of about a hundred versions of mexican liquors they have on hand. It’s a can’t-miss and, of course, made with all local, seasonal and organic ingredients. In fact, chef Mateo gave us a tour of his organic garden in the back of the restaurant. He’s thought of everything — he even planted bushes to keep the bees happy!

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

The tempeh is hiding under all the veggies — don’t let the appearance fool you,this dish has more (and healthier) protein than a giant steak!

A Foodie Tour of Healdsburg, CA

Feel like a drink? Pop into Mateo’s for a mezcal or high-end tequila tasting…

Up next: my favorite Healdsburg shops…

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A writer, artist and designer since she was young enough to put pencil to paper, Hilary spends most of her time in France, but still considers herself a New Yorker, and visits regularly. Hilary spent the past decade living in NYC and has traveled extensively around the world, looking for hot new topics, destinations, and brands to bring to Urbanette readers.

59 Comments

  1. Pevensie girl

    Hey! I just love your photos!! The view is great!! Can I have a copy to print? Thank you so much.

  2. Tom Kearney

    Wonderful article. Your descriptions were in-depth and down-to-earth, unlike most articles about our town. It’s true, there are too many restaurants, shops, and wineries for one article. Every word you wrote is true and you didn’t exaggerate at all. Thank you for sharing your feelings.

  3. Monika Smith

    Wow! great article & pictures. this travel article is very impressive. i would love to visit this place.

  4. Diana Hewitt

    Great article, Hilary! As always very well done. May I ask what kind of camera you use to take these photos? they look very professional. I’m starting a blog, and I want my photos to look as good as yours. 🙂

    • We used a Sony RX100.. it’s an older model, but I like it because it will shoot RAW (so you can adjust the light levels in post) and has a hot shoe for a mic or extra light, etc.

  5. Frances Seifert

    Such an ecofriendly, vegan friendly, healthy beautiful little town! It’s making it’s way to my bucket list as I’m writing this comment. ;)If you know more places like this, please share! I’m very interested. 🙂

  6. Anna Kaplan

    Such a gorgeous place, isn’t it? I’m so impressed with the hotel that was built out of recycled materials. I’m a sucker for eco-friendly 😀 -as all humans should be!!-

  7. Delilah Peyton

    such a well detailed tour. loving the photos, and the video makes it all even better. the only thing is… i wish you would rate the places you visit like out of 5 or 10, so we could get a better idea.

    • Nicky Bryan

      This is not Yelp.. She’s not writing a review.. She’s sharing her travel experiences with us.. And if you noticed, she’s only mentioning the pleasant ones. I haven’t seen a negative article on a place she visited. Which I’m sure she must have had some negative experiences at some places, but she never mentions them because it’s out of the context. She does travel guides, not do not travel guides, so rating would be pointless.

      • Delilah Peyton

        well hello to you too… i was just making a suggestion, i wasn’t criticising or anything. no need to overreact like that.

  8. Colleen Frasier

    What a beautiful town! Just like the kind of towns we see in movies and wish it was real. 🙂 And leave it to Hilary Rowland to discover it for us! ????? Always a unique, stunning place that leaves us in awe… And Healdsburg is a wonderful example of that! thanks a bunch. ❤️

  9. Julia MacLean

    Thank you for this wonderful piece, Hilary! Me and my husband have been wanting to do a roadtrip but didn’t know where to go. I’ll show this article to him tonight, discuss it, and hopefully decide on travelling there. 🙂

  10. Emily Wentz

    This place seems like it has something to offer for every kind of people! For example my mom loves wine tasting, so a visit to the vineyard would be ideal for her, my sister loves some quality spa time, and I’m interested in organic cooking, so this seems to be the right place for our annual mother-daughter 3 day weekendget away 😀

  11. Olivia Peterson

    Is the vineyard close to the hotel? Just asking cause I love the idea of travelling there by bike, but I haven’t ridden a bike in years so I don’t want to take the risk of taking a bike and driving 20 miles haha

    • Yes – there are vineyards that are a 5 min bike ride… but you can pretty much bike for as long as you want, since Sonoma is huge. Also, there’s 17 or so wine tasting rooms within a few minutes walk from any downtown hotel!

  12. Lana Urie

    Urbanette magazine REALLY does have the most original content! I follow so many travel blogs, but not one of them mentioned Healdsburg, let alone making a whole feature about it. But I’m sure a lot of blogs and websites will be talking about how awesome Healdsburg is. They all are secretly copying Urbanette.

    • Celine Carter

      To be fair I also caught some blogs stealing ideas from Urbanette, but I figured it all just might have been a coincidence. Apparently not LOL

    • Thanks, Lana! I try to visit places that are unique and offer something special. So glad you like it!

  13. LOVE ❤️
    LOVE ❤️❤️
    LOVE ❤️❤️❤️

    Brilliant article and impressive visuals! I’m sold haha 😉 I don’t have any plans for the summer, and I really liked what I saw about Healdsburg, CA, so I’m gonna talk to my friends and see if they’re up for a trip to Healdsburg this summer!

  14. Cassi Braun

    Oh wow … ??????
    I’m totally stunned!
    Adding this to my travel list for the summer, as I was already going to visit San Francisco. 🙂

  15. OK. – First of all, such a beautiful place! I hope I can make time to visit it myself. 🙂

    Seconldy, loooooove the video and pics! So vibrant and energetic. 🙂

    Thirdly, and last, but not least,- subscribing to your YouTube Channel. Hope you update often!

    Best wishes,

    Selia

  16. Pearl Nguyen

    What a gorgeous town! Straight out of modern fairy tales. ? I’d love to visit, but I’d most like to move there! I’m so tired of the drama of LA, but love California too much to move to another state. So I’m thinking of visiting Healdsburg to see if it’s the place for me. This could be life changing for me. Thank you so much, Hilary! xx

  17. Roberta Bennett

    I have a friend who lives in Fulton. She told me about Healdsburg. But she loves exaggerating, so I didn’t pay much attention to it. Now that I saw it with my own eyes, through you, I just wish I shold have listened to her and took her offer for a visit.

  18. Leslie Williams

    The town looks so lush, and the hotel looks super lavish! Probably a little out of my price range, but your article makes it sound definitely worth it.

    • Molly Twain

      That’s what I thought too, until I checked the prices on the web, that is… Surprisingly reasonable and affordable. If you really want to visit, don’t waste time! California is prettier in spring, than it is in summer. I’ve just decided to travel down to Healdsburg for my birthday in May.

      • Leslie Williams

        Oh…. I didn’t know any of that! My bad assuming.. Thanks a lot for your response. I will reconsider it, and hopefully make this trip happen. 🙂

      • Spring is great in Cali… some areas tend to turn brown in the summer, because of the drought and the heat of the sun…

        • Tom Kearney

          That’s not brown — it’s gold, and all summer too! We’re the Golden State after all. But after the winter rains, it’s amazing to see the hills turning chartreuse and then green again…and Healdsburg is the place to see it happen (moved here in ’93)!

  19. Catherine White

    You had me at “hotels were constructed using recycled material and salvaged lumber” ♻️ A beautiful town with an eco friendly community! It makes it to my to-visit-list. Keep these travel guides coming, you beautiful lady. Lots of love. Xo <3

  20. Kimberley Foulkes

    I’ve just Google’d the hotel you stayed at… My goodness!!! ? It’s so lush! The perfect place for a romantic getaway with your better half. I want to go to Healdsburg ASAP!

  21. Felicia Stewart

    That’s my retirement plan right there! When I’m retired, I’m sooo gonna buy a vineyard in California, and live a calm, happy life away from the stress of the big city, maybe even start painting again! Healdsburg seems just like the place to make it happen!

    • I know how it feels — I need to get away from NYC frequently… this is a great place to recuperate from city life!

  22. Elin Hanks

    Thanks for sharing yet another amazing travel experience of yours with us! They always amaze me. I don’t get to travel often, so I really love living this travel adventures vicariously through you.❤️?

  23. I really enjoyed this post, especially the video! I had no idea that you had a YouTube channel. Subscribing now!!

  24. Gorgeous little town. Reminded me of Nicaea in Turkey which I visited last year with my husband. We love places like this. I’m sure we will visit there soon. 🙂

  25. Andrea Mitchell

    I lived 8 years in California, but I never heard of Healdsburg before. No surprise that I’ve found it through you. You’re a total travel guru! You deserve your own TV show. xoxo

    • Jae Medina

      Yes, she definitely does! Plus she’s so charismatic, and the camera loves her! I’d never miss an episode if she was to be on TV with her own show!

  26. Sibel Jenkinson

    hi! im a film student and ive been desperately looking for a small town near nevada or california where i could film a short movie with my team. thanks to you, i’ve just found it! would love to credit you for the location on the closing credits screen. ?

  27. Great article, Hilary! I guess it’s safe to say that Healdsburg, CA is an artistic haven for foodies, adventurers, art enthusiasts and wine connoisseurs 🙂

  28. Monica CONOVER

    Definitely my type of town! LOVE it. You are the luckiest woman I know of, because you get to visit everywhere I wish I could visit.

  29. Shannon Bradley

    A visual tour, not only with photos, but also a video? You know what you’re doing! You’re not just blogging. Really appreciate how professional you are.

    • Glad you like it — I’m going to do a video at every destination from now on… I think it gives an extra perspective that’s hard to capture in writing and photography.

  30. Danielle Wilson

    Great timing for this post, Hilary! I’ll be in California for 3 weeks next month, and I’m adding Healdsburg to my list of places to visit during my stay there. 🙂

  31. Francis Woods

    OMG!!! I’m jealous! Love your photos and thanks for sharing your video!!!

  32. Incredibly beautiful! Thanks for making a post about this amazing place. Wouldn’t have found out about it if it wasn’t for this article. 🙂

  33. Gabby Williams

    I’m impressed that you did not have a hard time requesting for vegan food. Well, some of the places I’ve been to made it hard for me. Thank you for sharing the experience!

  34. Susan Stewart

    Fantastic! I appreciate how detailed you’ve written your experience. And the photos?!!! Superb!!! Can’t deny, you got me sooooo excited!!!

  35. From your writing, I can conclude that Healdsburg, CA is one of the unique places that combines beautiful county with elegant (or developed) restaurants and shops plus limitless fun activities to do. Wonderful article and awesome photos!

  36. Feels like Healdsburg, CA is an exquisite place to visit. I’m longing for a healthy and active vacation. Thank you very much for writing this!

  37. I always think of wine travel as a voyage of discovery! You perfectly described the experience, Hilary! I just discovered the ideal environment for pursuing the pleasures of the vine. Fantastic article!

  38. I love traveling and I love doing adventurous things when I travel. I like the idea of Wine Country Bikes, I checked on the website. Did you take the organic and biodynamic wineries tour? How was the experience?

    • Yes – it was great! They can customize the tour based on your desires — whatever you want, they can create. Super bespoke 🙂

  39. Michelle Luedtke

    Wine country bikes?! Sounds like a great idea!

  40. WOW! Looks like you had fun and a memorable vacation! When I travel, I make sure to try wine and local food. This travel article is of great help! Would love to visit Healdsburg, CA. Hopefully soon!

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