3 New Sonoma Restaurants We’re Excited About

A multitude of new restaurants have recently opened or are opening in Sonoma County. We can’t wait to try them all. Here are three we recommend checking out right now. Click on the gallery above for dishes to order.

Restaurant Warike, Santa Rosa

Peruvian cuisine is on the rise in Sonoma County. Luigi Dagnino, owner of Ayawaska in Petaluma, has opened a sister restaurant, Warike Restobar, at the former Stout Brothers location on Fourth Street, just west of Courthouse Square.

A full bar with pisco sour and other pisco cocktails, as well as excellent ceviche, tequeños de cangrejo (crab and shrimp stuffed wontons, with spicy pepper aioli) and causa marina (potatoes and crab) make this place worth a visit. Lomo saltado is one of the tastiest versions and aji de gallina is a comforting dish of shredded chicken and rice.

There’s a long list of desserts as well as dozens of specialty cocktails, including mules, rum drinks, wine, beer, and Inca Kola, a Peruvian staple. The name is a combination of the Quechua words “wa” (hidden) and “rique” (stew). Dagnino, who is Peruvian, says his restaurant is all about creating a secret place to enjoy great food.

527 Fourth St., Santa Rosa. warikesf.com

Peruvian cuisine of the Incas, Sebastopol

Owner Oscar Canul explains the current demand for Peruvian cuisine because they love how it fuses native Inca ingredients with immigrant influences from Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, Italian and African cultures. “It’s the tastes, the sauces, the culture,” he explains. It takes a little searching to find his new restaurant, located in a quiet strip mall just west of downtown Sevastopol.

The kitchen strives to use authentic ingredients and techniques, but is not bound by tradition. The habanero mango ceviche with shrimp, the papa rellera with ground beef and raisins, and the causa Santa Rosa, a tower of pickled beets and mashed potatoes, are top picks. Also notable are the seco de carne (short ribs in a cilantro and beer broth) and the parihuela, a piping hot boullabaisse broth loaded with seafood and potatoes.

799 Gravenstein Highway S., Sevastopol, 707-861-9057

Zimi on a mission

Passionate about bringing the Old World flavors of Greece to Sonoma County, Chef Dino Moniodis has grown his business from a small food trailer to two traditional restaurants: wood-fired pizzas at The Block in Petaluma and now, Zimi on Mission. Growing up, Moniodis spent his summers on the peaceful Greek island of Chios, an idyllic Aegean outcrop steeped in ancient history, and worked in family taverns, learning to tenderize octopus and clean fish on the beach. “In Greece, the culture is the food. We sit all day and eat mezze,” he said of the traditional snack marathon in the Greek islands.

The pizzas are definitely the restaurant’s bread and butter, with Greek-inspired toppings on their twice-baked crusts (“zimi” means dough in Greek). Moniodis piles up unexpected combinations that work perfectly. In addition, his homemade dolmas, his puff pastry spinach spanakopita and his pastitsio, a kind of Greek lasagna, hit the mark.

500 Mission Blvd., Santa Rosa. http://eatzimionmission.com

Find more restaurants on our radar here.

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