Walter Hansel Wine Bistro

4.8
936 reviews
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$31 to $50
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French
We are a small restaurant and love Open Table diners, please, please notify us as early as possible if your plans change. If you are unable to find the reservation you want, please call us directly at (707) 546-6462. Thank you.

"An impressive new Santa Rosa restaurant that's instantly one of our best"
Jeff Cox, renowned Wine Country food critic.

Step into the famed roadhouse just west of Santa Rosa and you'll find an amazing menu featuring French country- style cuisine graced with a few worldly surprises.

What 936 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.9
service
4.6
ambience
4.6
value
Noise · Moderate
100% of people would recommend it to a friend
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t
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Matthew's service was awesome! Quiet. Got some free samples and wine was fantastic.

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d
Washington DC
17 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely everything was perfectly prepared and served with by caring friendly people.

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d
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

If you love French cooking this is the place to come. Every dish was delicious and visually appealing. Our server Matthew and the other staff were friendly and very attentive but not overly so. The food was hot and not presented until we were ready. Never felt rushed even though the place was full. The decor was casual elegance. The only thing I would like changed is the noise level. It was hard to hear each other at times. Otherwise I fabulous experience.

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SM
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

This was our first visit to this Bistro since it was Zazu. The facility is a converted old farm house and seemed to be pretty much how it was laid out when it was Zazu. It’s small and quaint but it can be noisy since the low slanted roof probably bounces the sound around the room. We are ok with the noise level but if you are looking for a quiet place, this might not be for you. I think my dad with his hearing aid would have a hard time here. We had reservations and were seated right away. We had the salmon appetizer which was tasty, asked for additional “crackers” and got them quickly. We nibbled on this while waiting for our lobster bisque being baked with a flakey top {~14 min}. The bisque was tasty but had a tad more white pepper than we are use to. My husband had the scallops which he said were good (3 large pieces) and I had the herbed rack of lamb (4 ribs) which were cooked perfectly to my preference. If it had come with a pepper jelly, I would have been in heaven but it came with a gingered apple preparation which I did not care for. We had discussed the wine pairing with our server and enjoyed our sections. We shared a bread pudding dessert with French pressed coffees which was a lovely end to a very enjoyable meal. Service was great.

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s
Los Angeles
21 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We enjoyed the entire evening, food, service and ambiance. Our server was exceptional. We will be returning.

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OT
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on April 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Nice country location. It gives you the feeling that you are closer to the farm compared to restaurants in town.

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OT
1 review
Dined on April 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Came at the suggestion of a friend who said it was their favorite in Sonoma county... and I agree! Fantastic!

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BC
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous dinner. Staff is extremely attentive. Excellent food. Nice touches with little extras before and after dinner. Highly recommend.

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CK
Los Angeles
12 reviews
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Great meal.

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KO
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Came here with my husband on a weekend getaway to Santa Rosa. We were both very impressed by the food prepared and the wait staff were friendly and attentive. Would highly recommend to anyone traveling to the North Bay!

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DC
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Very good food and friendly service. Good value too.

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w
1 review
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

great people and service. They made us feel very welcome.

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ES
1 review
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful! Great food and service! We will request Mathew again! We look forward to coming back.

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L
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined on April 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of the best restaurants in Sonoma County. Always consistent with great seasonal offering.

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P
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A fabulous meal in wine country. We had the sea bass, beef Bourgogne and duck breast followed by the best Apple Tart Tatin in the world!

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r
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is the second time I have been here, and I really appreciate the added attention of receiving a taste of the soup before our meal, and an after dinner drink to accompany our dessert. This, and the fabulous waiters (both times I was there) makes this a place I will come to again and again. Thank you:)

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A
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best rack of lamb in the county! The Coquille St. Jacque is a seasonal favorite. The only problem is deciding what to have! The staff is so friendly and attentive.

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a
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is our favorite place in Sonoma County. The best in every way

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D
Chicago
10 reviews
Dined on March 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome food and Matthew is every bit as awesome as always!

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K
San Francisco
20 reviews
Dined on March 24, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

This is one of our favorite restaurant the staff and food were

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s
San Francisco
27 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of our favorite places in Wine Country. The ambiance is cozy. Staff is friendly and helpful. Food is delicious. As usual I have difficulty making a decision because there are too many things I like on the menu. Definitely a first world problem. Having an issue with dairy, it's appreciated when I get my own amuse bouche such as olives rather than a dairy based sampler. Wine menu is varied with good options and well priced. Looking forward to seeing a Spring menu on my next visit.

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BB
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed the whole experience. The staff is very attentive and helpful. The food was great and served within a timely manner.

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A
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had the best experience here. We were celebrating a birthday and not only was the food delicious, the service was really exceptional. The staff went above and beyond to make sure food allergies were accommodated, etc. Would highly recommend dinner here, and we will definitely return!

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q
San Francisco
57 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and service was so wonderful!
Matthew our waiter recommended everything wonderful.
I am so glad we discovered this little gem
Less then 20 Minutes from home.
Run don’t walk to this restaurant!!!

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FF
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on March 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food, luxury experience! For a special (pricey) night out it's wonderful.

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F
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

The first impression was impressive. We dined at Walter Hansel Wine Bistro during the Restaurant Week. The service was very attentive without being overbearing. The bread reminded me of my teenage days as an exchange student living with a French family outside Paris. The salad was delicious. I had the sea bass course which was just fantastic; my husband and his cousin's husband had the steak which was tasty. But the rack of lamb stole the show. We ordered glasses of two Walter Hansel's own pinot noirs and a sauvignon blanc. They were quite good. Overall, this restaurant reminds of the unpretentiously good restaurants where I had the pleasure of eating in France (I still go back there to visit my host family). As a long-time New Yorker who lived in France, Switzerland, the Philippines, and LA; and traveled in more than 30 countries in the world; this is MY FAVORITE in the North Bay. I will surely be back for more...

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B
Sacramento
16 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our friends have told us about Walter Hansel for a few years and we finally went there for Restaurant Week. We had the hanger steak and the sea bass. OMG!!! Both were perfectly prepared, presented and delicious beyond expectations! Our server, Heather, was outstanding. Along with the entire staff. We will be returning as this is now a new favorite for us! And we live just 5 minutes away!

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JS
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Went for Restaurant week to try a new place and was pleasantly surprised. Food was excellent and staff were fun. Parking lot is small and it can be noisy, but well worth it!

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L
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were introduced to Walter Hansel Bistro via the Sonoma County Restaurant Week. It was a thoroughly enjoyable dining experience from the amuse-bouche to the delectable dessert. The servers were attentive and pleasant without being intrusive. The food really was so well prepared! Now that we know it's here, we'll be back

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was awesome and service was amazing!

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A
Charlotte
2 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience. The food and the service is amazing. Mathew is an outstanding person. He explains eveything and makes you feel like royalty. I am super excited to find this restaurant.

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V
San Francisco
45 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food during restaurant week and any time we visit. Matthew, our waiter, is s delight and takes care of all the details. This place is a gem.

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DH
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of my absolute favorite places !!! Always warm and welcoming, outstanding service and delicious, plentiful food. You will leave ever so satisfied.

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CS
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Most amazing food! Everything was so delicious and it's great to know the produce you're eating is locally grown. We had the pre-fix menu for restaurant week. Started with sparkling rose, glass of Pinot...The shot of soup was incredible...wanted more! The salad was great, then our entree, hanger steak and chicken cordon bleu. Absolutely the best! Finished everything up with a lemon dessert and liquor... didn't leave a speck behind. Will return again and again...

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SL
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

There is never any doubt that the evening at Walter Hansel will be outstanding!

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SF
1 review
Dined on March 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

My wife and I call WHWB "our place." We love it. The food is delicious and the presentation is wonderful. The wait staff is attentive, but not too attentive. The waiter's wine recommendation was spot on. An all around fantastic wine country dining experience. Five stars.

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ML
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

For those looking for the ideal wine country dining experience, nothing beats Walter Hansel Wine Bistro.

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AP
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Food was excellent as usual. Busy night cause it was restaurant week but we were celebrating a birthday.

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A
Charlotte
3 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a great experience. We decided to go for the Sonoma Restaurant week because we have never tried this restaurant before. Wow the service, the food and the entire experience was fantastic. We had a great time and we already made another reservation to go back again. Eveything was amazing. A five star for sure!⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 3

The food wasn’t as good as we had it in the past and the food concepts just didn’t go together. Lacking culinary combinations.

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