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Walter Hansel Wine Bistro

4.7
1212 Reviews
$31 to $50
French
We offer French country-style cuisine graced with a few worldly surprises and are located just 6 minutes from Coddingtown Mall and 10 minutes from Downtown Santa Rosa surrounded by beautiful vineyards with an onsite garden for fresh, farm-to-table vegetables and herbs.

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

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.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 1212 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.8
service
4.4
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
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FF
FoodForThought
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall4food4service3ambience3

Good consistent food. Service was a bit slow, but we weren’t in a big hurry.

SF
SadFoodie
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall3food2service3ambience4

Really beautiful covered outdoor seating area! Very cozy and plenty of heaters to keep everybody warm.

Unfortunately, probably due to Restaurant Week, the service was unbearably slow. It took nearly 3 hours for three of us to get to the end of our meal, and we waited easily between 40+ minutes before we were given each following course. It was almost comical how long it took to the point where we joked that they must be making our cheesecake from scratch. Again, somewhat understandable due to Restaurant Week and probably some short staffing in the kitchen. It happens.

However, the food wasn't worth the wait and the cost. The Caesar salad tasted like nothing. I could barely detect the dressing, so I felt like I was eating crunchy water with a few anchovies on top. I got the steak frites as an entree. The steak was cooked a perfect medium rare and was super tender, but wasn't seasoned at all. The Brussels sprouts were steamed with a tiny bit of browning on them and tasteless as well. The fries ended up looking like McDonald's fries and quickly tasted like a stale version of them within a few minutes. They literally provided maybe half a tablespoon of ketchup in a little plastic container and some weird aioli that tasted exactly like eating straight up curry powder. I didn't bother asking for more because it would have taken longer than finishing my entree to receive. We also tried the king salmon risotto. The salmon was cooked perfectly, but overall the dish was bland and unmemorable.

The best part for me was probably the persimmon cheesecake, which was really good. The chocolate mousse was okay, and the pot de creme was unremarkable.

I was so excited to try this place and was ready for an upscale, memorable dinner experience. While I appreciated the cozy ambiance, I left feeling bummed that my table of three had spent about $200 before tip on bland, forgettable food and excruciatingly slow service.

v
vinnie
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall3food4service3ambience3

Noise level couldn't be helped, next to the hwy. and under a tent. Service could use some improvement! Always had a good meal there.

m
med2033
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined on February 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

We're big fans of WHWB, so took advantage of Restaurant Week to visit. Due to COVID restrictions, dining is on the patio under a three-sided tent.

We've now dined this way three times over the past few months, and while it isn't like being inside the restaurant, it doesn't detract too much from the experience - food and service are largely unaffected. The tent has plenty of heaters, which are situated to provide a decent temperature. I wore a sweater over a shirt and was comfortable.

We each had the filet mignon option on the Restaurant Week menu, which was perfect. Service was attentive, prompt, and cheerful. The staff is happy to be working, even under the present restrictions.

If you like good food and good service, a lovely wine list, this is one of the best experiences you can have in a local restaurant at the moment.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on February 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Restaurant week. It was great!

TK
ThomasK
1 review
Dined on February 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Walter Hansel Wine Bistro is in our top 5 places to dine in Sonoma County. The food is very good and varying with the seasons. The wait staff is immensely knowledgeable and friendly. We have never had a bad experience.
The wine menu is also reasonable, with a range of varietals and price points. But, this is not going to be an inexpensive meal. The Price Fixe menu does allow for an economical option if you're interested. And, of you don't order wine or appetizers you can get out of there for a reasonable sum.
We couldn't recommend this place enough. It would be nice to be able to dine indoors again, but WHWB has gone out of their way to make their outdoor dining experience as comfortable as possible.

Cheers!

SM
SueM
1 review
Dined on February 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, huge tent, plenty of heaters. I hope they keep the outdoor dining after COVID is over.

MM
MinglingMike
San Francisco
30 reviews
Dined on February 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

WHB was a great way to kick off restaurant week. We enjoy this bistro every time we visit. The food is great. Had the tomato bisque, beet salad, filet mignon, and fish with a bottle of wine and were too full to eat dessert, which we took home with us. Excellent service to match the food. Our only suggestion is to mix up the menu a bit more.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on February 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We are neighbors of Walter Hansel Bistro and frequent it often - they always make us feel welcome - whether you want a great burger or prefer a 3-course meal, you’ll always be glad you did! The food is fresh and creative and the wait staff goes above and beyond!!

CM
CindyM
1 review
Dined on February 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Food was fabulous, they have done a nice job creating outdoor seating that is warm, well blocked from the street and comfortable.

TW
TamiW
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing food. We have eaten their twice and will be back for sure.

F
Factor
Central Coast
16 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

A fabulous Valentines menu, and the staff was great as ever. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and will of course be back many more times this year!

HH
HeidiH
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was amazing.

TD
vipTravelingDiner
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2021
Overall3food1service5ambience4

Excellent service in a very nice outdoor patio, sadly the food was so lacking in flavor or spice we could not eat it. Tried to email the restaurant instead of review, but they do not post an email address. They need a chef!

M
vipMichel
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Celebrated a friend's birthday, "mushroom heaters" created a nice warm tent, the food was perfect, we all will be back

CD
vipConstanceD
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always fresh and fabulous food. One of the best in Sonoma County!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 29, 2021
Overall2food2service4ambience3

The food was drastically under-seasoned, bland, and nothing special, but the staff were nice.

HD
vipHankD
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Even with the outdoor seating everything was First Class as always. Will be going back soon.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful as always! Love this place!

CH
vipCarineH
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on December 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

What to say, excellent. The food, atmosphere, service are all superb. Would totally recommend it.

KD
vipKellyD
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

We’ve been to your restaurant several times this year and always enjoy the welcoming service, great food and warm atmosphere. The new tent for outside is a pleasant addition and very romantic. Also cuts down on the road noise. Appreciate your prefix menu and great wine selection. Happy holidays & see you soon.

e
ericl
1 review
Dined on December 4, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

great place with good service, great wine and fantastic food

HD
HappyDiners
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on November 19, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience4

We dine here every chance we get. The food is fantastic & the service is superb.

j
vipjeffreyr
San Francisco
20 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience1

I know operating under Covid-19 is a challenge for all. The atmosphere under their tent is poor at best. Muddy parking, gravel under your feet, really loud road noise, low quality furniture, tables, etc. Food was very poor quality and way over priced. Web site shows a vegetarian menu, but they had no vegetarian options when we arrived. Lobster bisque had so much pepper you couldn't taste anything else. Short-ribs had a very bitter taste like juniper or rosemary. There were no options for children. The vegetarian entre they threw together was missing requested mushrooms and was just a scoop of all the sides. No flavor and no visual interest. Service was haphazard and forgetful; never once came by to refill water. Total bill with tip for 3 people was $230 with no dessert. Really wanted to enjoy this establishment, but no need to return, Covid or no Covid.

f
vipfoodaholic
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was absolutely delicious. The Lobster Bisque was really good; nice and hot on a cold night. Our entrees of sea bass and short ribs were savory and cooked perfectly; but then that’s why we go to Walter Hansel-it never disappoints. The tent and heaters made dining during Covid circumstances comfortable.

GF
vipGlutenFreeJen
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A lovely time and delicious food. We were completely warm and cozy in the outdoor dining area. Tables allowed for proper social distancing and the heaters kept us warm and comfy. They’ve decorated the interior of the outdoor dining area with wine barrels and soft lighting - great for a special occasion, a date or just a great meal out!

JG
vipJG12
Orange County
13 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The staff was very attentive and friendly. The food was fabulous as always. Best restaurant in Santa Rosa.

MM
MinglingMike
San Francisco
31 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience3

They have an open tent set up with heaters so you're protected from the elements. It was actually a bit too warm during our visit. The food is very good; however, the menu is a little stale. They're missing the apertif and after-dinner drink, which is something that make's Hansel's a little special. This is still one of our favorite spots, but it's hard to get motivated to go much more than once a quarter given little to no surprises on the menu.

R
Rubyslipper
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was a bday celebration and was the first COVID outing. Everything was wonderful, noisy a bit from road and another party yet was SO happy with our food and service! Will return for sure.

D
Deborah
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Hansel's has been clever with their outdoor seating making it warm and comfortable for evening dining. The wait staff is bright and friendly! The food was amazing, as always! Hang in there, guys! We need you!

F
Factor
Central Coast
16 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Always great food and service. Never disappoints!

BS
BonnyS
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

They did an outstanding job with outside dining; many heat lamps, nice flowers and tables placed just so. I had the halibut and it was quite tasty, however a bit dry. I’ll be back.

H
vipHollywood
Palm Springs
47 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great evening! Food was wonderful and staff amazing, certainly will return!!

BE
BruceE
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Always Amazing even thru Pandemic...Wonderful Staff and Wonderfully delicious food!

RE
RoseE
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 25, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent experience, attentive staff, amazing food...totally forgot we were in a pandemic

TP
TomP
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

First time dining here, really enjoyed the food, service, and wine list. In addition to the standard menu they offer a price fix option which is a great offer.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Food, wine, and service were excellent - as usual. Adapting to outside dining must be hard for a restaurant with such a great indoor ambience, but they are doing a wonderful job. The prix fixe menu is great value - with different choices and different price points - and the à la carte is still available too.

If you haven’t been, you should. If you have, you should go back!

KD
vipKellyD
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Just a fun time - great food, service and they've made the outside dining experience as easy as possible. Pre Fix menus are a bargain and they do not scale back. Service has always been enjoyable and timely.

F
Factor
Central Coast
16 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience3

The food and service at Walter Hansel are ALWAYS outstanding! Being out on the patio isn’t nearly as great as being in the inside dining room, but it’s what we have to put up with, and as I mentioned, everything else is flat out great!!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful and safe outdoor dining at one of our favorite restaurants!

FAQs

Walter Hansel Wine Bistro offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (707) 546-6462.

Walter Hansel Wine Bistro is rated 4.7 stars by 1212 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.