Gillwoods Cafe Review
Hours: 7:00am to 3:00pm Daily
Gillwoods Cafe food
Gillwoods has an enormous menu of homestyle / diner type foods. We mostly go for breakfast although we'll occasionally stop by for lunch as well. Like a lot of homestyle meals, the breakfast dishes are a bit on the heavy side with lots of eggs, potatos, pancakes, sausage, bacon, gravy, etc. in the form of hot plates, omlettes, and what not. They have some fancier dishes like eggs benedict which are ok, but those dishes are not in the same league as the ones at say ABC Cafe. For lunch, you'll see a multitude of sandwiches, burgers, soups, etc.
Below is a shot of my chicken fried steak. I was prepared to go for the triple bypass surgery the next day. The chicken fried steak itself was fine. Eggs came in at a nice sunny side up. The biscuit was still fresh and fluffy. As gutbusters go, it filled its role admirably.
Here is a shot of our huevos rancheros. The eggs were lost in the salsa and cheese which was a bit of a boo. This one doesn't stand up to its ABC counterpart either, but overall, it was an ok breakfast.
I know that I'm saying "isn't as good as ABC" a lot here, and that's a bit unfair. It's a different restaurant. ABC aims for more upscale food; Gillwoods aims for more homestyle. There are times when you want the latter and Gillwoods is probably the best of this type in Napa. I'd put it ahead of Emmy Lou's Diner in this respect, but Emmy Lou is more "real" as it doesn't have the touristy elements and also has better prices.
Gillwoods setting and service
Gillwoods is in the middle of Napa's primary downtown mall area. Pleasant enough on a nice spring day, but you know, it's still a mall.
Inside, the setting is pretty much like you'd expect a homestyle breakfast / diner place to be. Nicer than a Denny's, but that's about it. Kind of an older decor. The outdoor seating area is kind of nice except for the fact that you mostly get to see people wandering around in an outdoor mall. Service is fine overall for this type of restaurant. As typical with these sort of places, there seems to be a higher percentage of older folks who figure what's the harm of one more cholesterol bomb.
Price of our meal
2 breakfast meals + 1 cup of coffee + tax & tip = $27
Gillwoods is a bit pricey for the food. It's solid homestyle breakfast and lunch food, but it seems a bit much. For breakfast, I'd rather spend $5-8 more and eat at the ABC Cafe which is way better than just "solid." But that's only if you want more of a higher-end breakfast. If you're in the mood for a ton of simpler, more familiar breakfast or lunch choices, then Gillwood's is a good pick.