Putah Creek Cafe in Winters, CA

The food itself is good, SOMEtimes…  We’ve been here a couple of times and the first time the tomatoes on my burger were farm fresh!  The burger itself was tasty.  My daughter had the chicken fried steak and eggs meal and the potatos were fresh and the meat was fork tender.  We decided to come back and it was never the same.  I saw fresh squeezed orange juice in the mimosa so I had them bring me some (without the mimosa part) and I can see WHY they need the mimosa part.  This so called fresh squeezed tastes like minute maid or some other box from concentrate OJ.  Sooo disappointed!

The burgers are still OK but I guess we were there like right after farmer’s market day or something because that first time everything was fresh tasting!  The times after that, not even close.  So the food is, I guess, a hit or miss at this place.
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But the service, oh my god, the service is HORRIBLE at this place.  The staff kind of forget about you and even to pay is a nightmare.  I could have walked out in the half an hour it took to stand in line to pay only to have some old BAT come in at the last second, CUT IN LINE, and pay her bill.  I said to the staff, I was here before her but do you think they cared? Nope.  Not about the line behind me or anything, they just said, give me a moment and took the bat’s money.  Ask me if I gave them a tip? Go ahead…

That’s right a BIG FAT ZERO is what they got. I should have been nice though… put on their receipt under tip: “Please pay attention to the people who eat at your place!”  I don’t feel bad for the zero tip. Not ONE bit. No one worked even slightly hard for their tip.  In fact, it must be so expected they don’t do anything at all and get paid to bring your food out to you and then YOU have to get up, stand in line to pay the bill.  This isn’t fast food, people!!

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I expect to be told the wait is blah, get seated, get my water, and then about 5-10 mins not a half hour (!) to get someone to get my order.  I think this is why the wait times are so long, because like I said, the staff forgets about you.  Now, it could be a serious understaffing problem but I don’t know, I did see plenty of bodies around but who knows, maybe they were all dishwashers.  In any case, I don’t see myself coming back.  Winters looks like a nice little town but yeah, we’ll probably find another place to stop by on the way to Berryessa.  Oh well… Like Alton said:

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Napoli Pizza

OK I don’t know if this is a National Chain or just California or just No. Cal…  So if you don’t have this chain, then never mind.  I’ll write about something else later.

The place I went to is in Vacaville, CA but there are others I’ve seen in Vallejo, and I believe Fairfield has this too.  In any case, the Vacaville one is OK.  The place looks nice, I guess, for a pizzeria.  It has a mini arcade for the kiddies and it sells booze, which would be great, if we didn’t have Walmart next door for cheap booze or the liquor store if you don’t want beer and Walmart doesn’t carry it.  Napoli only sells beer and wine.  I don’t drink booze so it’s a moot point for me but lots of people like pizza and beer or wine so I thought I should mention it.

We got Mozzarella sticks and a large super combo (basically the kitchen sink pizza.)  I wasn’t impressed and kinda grossed out by the Pizza.  Why?  They use a salami I am definitely not used and not fond of!  I don’t know if it died on the boat ride from Italy, if it was already dead before it got the boat, or what happened but it was foul.  It tasted like someone left out a hunk of meat to rot, threw a tiny bit of salt and miniscule pepper in it, rolled it up, cut it, and called it salami.  Now maybe I’m used to el cheapo salami which is more salt and/or spices than this stuff.  I like not tasting the rotted meat, thank you very much!  Either way, it grossed me out and well, messed up the pizza for me.

The mozzarella sticks were basically you eating bread with a few crumbs and cheese in the middle.  It wasn’t flavourful at all.  Again, maybe I’m used to el cheapo sticks but I like my sticks crunchy and with some kind of flavouring.  If I wanted bread and cheese, I could easily do a grilled cheese sandwich at home.  Except that sandwich would have some kind of crunch.  These didn’t.

Finally, the staff was so busy chatting amongst themselves that they forgot about the customers.  The waitress promised to refill our drinks and then went off to chat.  We went thirsty.  We opted for taking the stuff to go because who wants to eat gross pizza on a dry palate?  And yes, I picked off the salami.  The crust on the pizza looked alright and it was OK.  Nothing spectacular.  I suspect it’s just regular pizza dough that goes around everywhere.  Nothing a fast food pizza place wouldn’t have.

All in all, in case you can’t guess, I didn’t like this place.  Not one bit!  I’d suggest you stay away from it.  If my review doesn’t do it, perhaps I should tell you that for what it is, this place is pricey.  I think it’s about as pricey if not a little more than Pietro’s and god knows that place was better… at least their salami wasn’t dead.  But that’s a different review.  I ate there a long time ago and it was pricey but good.  This place didn’t even give you bread and butter while you waited.  Am I being too picky?  Is it too much to ask for some attention to your guests and food that isn’t bland or gross?  I don’t know… you tell me.  I think I’m asking for fair value but that’s not what I got.

Anyway, til next time folks!  Go eat somewhere else!  And if you don’t have a Napoli’s where you are, be very thankful!