It was a weekend to remember as Napa Valley added a new crown jewel to its roster of top-notch culinary experiences with the opening of Empire Napa, an innovative new dining hotspot located adjacent to the Andaz hotel.
The festivities kicked off Friday evening with a private soiree where guests enjoyed passed light bites showcasing the restaurant’s small plates menu including Eggplant Crustini, Cauliflower Fritters and Crab Agnolotti created by Chef Jennifer Petrusky. Known for their artisanal cocktails, fine wines and micro-brewed beers, guests sipped on the restaurant’s signature take on the classics, including the Old Fashioned and Dark and Stormy.
Owners Arthur Prieston and Nick Rimedio toasted to the evening, thanked each of the guests for attending and acknowledged the other restaurant partners before raising a glass of champagne to celebrate.
The lively weekend continued Saturday evening with the grand opening party. With the house DJ spinning, guests lounged in each of the restaurants unique vignettes – including the charming Gallery with eclectic couch seating and ceiling-to-floor, hand-woven drapes; the intimate Study, a more private dining with plush burgundy banquets and rich red tones; and the Great Room, featuring an eye-catching jellyfish tank, saloon-style bar and airy open ceilings. Designed by Michael Brennan – famed for his restaurant work up and down the West Coast – Empire Napa’s design fuses urban and art deco architecture with timeless artistry.
Dr. Drew Pinsky from “Celebrity Rehab” stopped in after his show at the Uptown Theater with his wife to enjoy a late night bite and cocktail.
As Napa’s newest dining sensation, Empire seamlessly embodies the trademark charm of the valley with a cosmopolitan sophistication where old-world charm meets modern day refinement. The 120-seat restaurant’s menu focuses on high quality ingredients and interactive small plate presentations showcasing variety and a sense of playfulness. The dining experience – with Asian, Mediterranean, Italian and French influences – includes “Choosing Your Own Adventure” where one can enjoy a bite and beverage and be out in 20 minutes or savor as many as 12 courses over three hours with cocktails and wine.
Empire Napa is located at 1400 First Street adjacent to the Andaz Napa in Downtown and is open daily at 5 p.m. For more information, follow Empire Napa on Twitter at @EmpireNapa and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/EmpireNapa.
Empire is an evening experience of Napa dining and crafted cocktails located in downtown Napa. A vibrant gathering place with an interactive small plate menu and strong focus on artisanal cocktails, fine wines and micro-brewed beers, Empire showcases the trademark Napa charm with a cosmopolitan sophistication. The menu centers on high quality, fresh ingredients and interactive small plate presentations showcasing variety and a sense of playfulness, while the beverage program features artisanal cocktails, custom barrel program and ever-evolving wine list. The Wine Board and Winemaker Series focuses on discovering new flavors and connecting with the community, taking guests “behind the label” with local winemakers. For additional information, visit empirenapa.com, follow on Twitter @empirenapa #empirenapa and interact on Facebook at facebook.com/empirenapa.com.