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Stett Holbrook | February 7, 2012 | Food & Drink Story Restaurants Eat and Drink

St. Helena
When her restaurant Go Fish tanked, Cindy Pawlcyn rechris­tened the space Brassica and turned it into a pitch-perfect emporium of Mediterranean fare. Small plates now take up most of the brasserie-style menu served all day. Crisp eggplant fries with yogurt dipping sauce are nearly weightless and compulsively edible. Chilled yellowfin tuna and meaty butterflied grilled sardines over creamy hummus stand out with bright flavors and simple pre­sentations, while pizzichi di farro (nutty, frilly pasta made from farro) and feta-crusted roasted sturgeon carry that fresh-picked minimalism onto larger plates. For dessert, it’s the chocolate torte. You’ve had it before, but this one’s thin crust and lofty, deeply chocolaty interior raise the bar. Another strong suit is the California-centric wine list, with over 70 by-the-glass options and many hard-to-find selec­tions. The friendly servers clearly enjoy the food and speak about it and the wine with author­ity. 641 Main St. (bet. Mills Ln. and Charter Oak Ave.), 707-963-0700 $$$ W **½


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