What started in 2006 as a temporary pop-up for chef Thomas Keller has since become an established fixture in Yountville’s dining scene (fans who can’t wait six months for a reservation at Keller’s French Laundry can easily snag a table here). The concept is simple: just one daily-changing prix fixe menu—which includes a salad, entrée, cheese course, and dessert—is served here family-style, for $48 a person. Though that’s a bargain-basement price for getting to taste Keller’s cooking, unfortunately, both the dishes (which can vary wildly, but tend toward the homespun—flat iron steaks, strawberry shortcake) and rather standard bistro-style dining space can seem disappointing after all the hype. One way to make sure you leave satisfied is to plan your visit on fried chicken night, held every week on alternating Mondays and Wednesdays. Buttermilk-fried, crispy outside and impossibly juicy inside, it’s the one sure dish at Ad Hoc with staying power.
Insider Tip: The best part about family-style dining here? You can ask for seconds.