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Reviews of the finest restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area by Carol and Joe Davis - the Dining Detectives. From Sushi to Prime Rib, the Detectives dine their way across the spectum of fine food. ©2006 Carol and Joe Davis

Café At Sonoma Mission Inn

We visited the Café on a serene fall afternoon for Sunday Brunch. It was very picturesque in the Sonoma Valley. The Café's Manager, Kathleen Loughney, warmly greeted us. Kathleen has been managing the restaurant for almost a year and she was a great host. She educated us about the history of the restaurant site and the plans they have for the future.

Many people remember this restaurant as The Big 3 which is the site of the oldest restaurant in the Sonoma Valley, founded over 150 years ago by Dr.T.M. Leavenworth. A character in his own right who built a bath house, inn, and store on this site where Indigenous peoples had previously bathed in their sacred springs.

There are plans for the Café to return to the Big 3 name with a new theme next year. In the meantime, we found the Café very comfortable with a beautiful décor. Fresh Yellow Roses on each table helped set the mood.

We also enjoyed shopping in the Spa oriented gift shop, adjacent to the dinning room. They carried a variety of casual wear for men and women with some styles sporting the Sonoma Mission Inn logo. The shop was also beautifully merchandised with a variety of gift items.

Brunch Libations

Ramos Fizz- Gin Triple Sec, Lime Juice, Egg White and Orange Juice. Packs a real punch -a great start to your Sunday Brunch.

Bellini-Gloria Ferrar Brut Sparkiling wine and Peach Nectar Perfect for peach lovers!

Absolut Mary- Absolut Peppar, Spicy Mary Mix, garnished with Pickled Green Beans and local Jalapeno stuffed olive Spicy and tangy with a kick

Coffee-It just kept showing up -Hot Hot Hot .

Wines by the glass-Sonoma and Napa Selections

Appetizers

House-cured Salmon and crème fraiche on scallion and leek flatbread-this was definitely the best choice of all the appetizers we tasted-This could be your main course-just add a Baby Spinach Salad.-True Heaven.

Steamed Bodega Bay black mussels with lemon grass,chili and coconut broth-the mussels were flavorful and tender in this lovely broth.

Bay Spinach salad with roasted beets,spicy pecans, Vella blue cheese and bacon-we were particularly impressed with the fact that it included both yellow and red beets-A superb salad.

Crispy fried rock shrimp with Andouille barbecue sauce and garlic chives-We loved the sauce and the light yet crispy shrimp,

Entrees

Huevous Rancheros Sonoma with cheddar, chorizo and sunny side up eggs- A perfect rendition of one of our favorite breakfasts.

Meyer lemon and cottage cheese pancakes with lemon cream- truly lemony but you may like them with a little maple syrup.

Grilled Rib-eye steak and eggs your way- In our snoopy style we observed two other happy patrons eating this classic.

House cured salmon benedict with asparagus and caper hollandaise-Rich and flavorful, we especially liked the red, green and yellow peppers.

Desserts

Classic SMI(Sonoma Mission Inn) Crème Brulee-Burnt cream custard served with Almond Tuile Cookie-you must save room for this as it is light and creamy.

Lemon Chiffon-low fat lemon mousse served with raspberries and raspberry sauce-Lovely presentation-Bravo to Joe Metro- the Pastry Chef. It is nice to see a really tasty low fat dessert -why can't other restaurants do the same?

Service

Cheri, our waitress was genuinely sweet and attended to our dining desires like we were family. We also were fortunate to hear a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday at the next table by Gerald, regularly sings with The Sonoma County Repertory Theatre. He told us that he always wanted to be a waiter but could only get jobs in show business until now.

The Café Sonoma Mission
and Spa

18140 Hwy 12
Boyes Hotsprings, Ca 95416

707-939-2410

Open 7 AM-9:30 PM

7 days a week

Major Credit Cards Accepted

Ample Free Parking

Reservations-Optional