Pizza and Pinot

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estate.jpgBy Deirdre Bourdet

A $10 dinner with wine in a wine country restaurant is like a unicorn--beautiful, magical, fun to think about, but totally a mythical beast... or at least that used to be the case.  I can now say with certainty that such an animal exists, every night, AND you can sit outside by a fireplace to enjoy it.  

Estate is Sondra Bernstein's latest restaurant project in the old General Daughter's location just a few blocks west of the Sonoma square. The restaurant offers up some seriously well-priced California-inflected Italian cuisine, and the Pizza and Pinot special is perhaps the best example of the restaurant's bicultural offerings.  Every night, and all day Saturday and Sunday, the bar menu features your choice of pizza with a glass of featured pinot grigio or pinot noir... for ten dollars. Total.  

estate1.jpgAnd we're not talking Domino's here. Margherita, fennel sausage with olives and oregano, gorgonzola dolce with potatoes and rosemary, or the chef's daily-changing special are all fair game.  One night the special was summer-fresh grape tomatoes with feta and mozzarella, another day it was an unforgettable salty-sour pie with slivered treviso and spectacular housemade pancetta.  All the crusts are crisp but chewy with a good yeasty tang, and nicely blistered from the wood-fired oven.  

The wines change, but recently featured a really excellent 5 Mile Bridge pinot noir from the Sonoma Coast that surely was created for consumption with pancetta pizza.  If you don't want one of the featured pinots, they let you pick a different one from the by-the-glass list for a $4 surcharge. If you want more cured pork products or an egg on your pizza, they'll do that too for an extra two bucks.  

Now if only someone would offer a ten dollar Brunch and Bubbles deal, wine country really would be paradise.

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This is so unfair to non-Napans! I demand that Estate open a branch in Palo Alto.

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