Bravas: Coming to Hburg

Ravenous Cafe | Mark Aronoff

Bravas (Spanish for “wild”) will be the Spanish-style Tapas bar replacing Ravenous in Healdsburg.

Taking over are Mark and Terri Stark, owners of Willi’s Wine Bar, Willi’s Seafood, Stark’s Steak and Seafood and Monti’s. Inspired by a trip to Barcelona, Chef Mark Stark plans to incorporate iconic Spanish ingredients like Iberico hams and piquillo peppers into his own style of Wine Country cuisine.

The forthcoming restaurant is also slated to include a “Sidra” or hard cider bar. Commonplace in Northern Spain, cider is naturally aerated by being poured in a thin stream from high above the bar. There will also be a lineup of sherries, local wines and creative cocktail offerings. Owners say to look for a summer 2012 opening.
Early this year, it was announced that Stark Reality Restaurants, owners of , had purchased the restaurant formerly known as Ravenous in Healdsburg.

Author: biteclub

Food Dining and Restaurants in Sonoma County and beyond, BiteClubEats.com is Wine Country dining with Drive-Thru Sensibility.

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19 Comments

  1. Wonderful news we will now have two of the Starks Restaurants in Healdsburg. We have sent many guests
    from Twin Towers over the last 10 years and now Brava in the burg. Looking forward to mid-October.

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  2. I am excited about all these new places! Let’s enjoy them and not be so negative! First…we must try!..then reply.

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  3. I am just so excited to have something different to choose from and tapas bars are fun. We need more fun and lass pretense in healdsburg. And I an confident based on the other stark properties that a great and authentic job will be done.

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  4. I just had to jump in on the Pimientos de Padron discussion. I too, am a fan of this form of gastronomic Russian Roulette. It’s kind of like eating fugu with less dire consequences. I also hope that Bravas will serve them, but Padrons are not as common here in the states as they are in Spain. It is my understanding that they also have very short season. Consequently they’re pretty costly as a raw ingredient. You are not going to be seeing $2 plates of them anywhere except your own table if you grow them yourself. You’ll find seeds for sale at a number of online retailers. (Baker Street Seeds in Petaluma didn’t have them the last time I looked, BTW) I think I may have seen the peppers themselves at the Sebastopol Farmers Market during the summer, but the only place that grows them in any kind of large quantity that I’m aware of is Happy Quail Farms in East Palo Alto. Yes, I said East Palo Alto. David Winsberg, the farmer there, was the first to bring them into the US. They sell them at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market seasonally. Here’s a link to more info on them. http://bit.ly/I2wX3Y. Note that they also sell the heavenly piquillo pepper.

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    • I was just taking a trip down memory lane. “To-To, we’re not in Barcelona anymore”.

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    • @ Holly several vendors sell padrons at the Santa Rosa farmers market for a few months during the summer. Usually $4-6 a basket.

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      • @Kathy. Thanks! I’ll keep an eye out for them.

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  5. It seems that Spanish, from Spain!, restaurants start out well enough here in California, but soon find that people are thinking Spanish, from Mexico, and start changing their menus into what they think people want. I hope that won’t be the case here. Barcelona is what Paris once was in terms of great food, but I suspect we will have to go there (again) to experience it. Viva Bravas!

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    • Diane, it is weird that Spanish cooking never got a foot hold in California. It seems like a natural fit. Maybe American chefs/cooks have been concentrating too much on France and Italy in their culinary travels. Also, the in and out tapas bar open all day to stave off the hunger because dinner doesn’t start until 10-ish is a concept foreign to Americans, snack as they will on garbage.

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      • I think Healdsburg is cosmopolitan enough for folks to get the whole tapas thing. I’m pretty confident that the Stark’s crew will do justice to the cuisine, though there’s no doubt it will have a Wine Country bent.

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  6. Re: pimientos de Padron for a couple of bucks a plate: Oh, wait, this is Healdsburg and Willi’s people. One question. Will the chef have any real Spanish experience with tapas and Spanish cuisine in general?

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  7. Gotta have huge piles of Pimiento de Padron for a couple of bucks a plate.
    I was just remembering the image of an older woman pouring cidra in a place in a village in Galicia. Her face was stern and showed no emotion as the cidra bottle she held high over her head emptied its contents in a stream that filled one glass after another. Much of the cidra splashed on the stone floor she stood on and on her flannel slippers, the front of her legs, and her aproned skirt.

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    • Well, Left Bank, how eloquent! Are you a food writer? What is Pimiento de Padron? Roasted peppers maybe?

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      • Teresa, I’m not a food writer. I was in Padron one fall a few years ago, on market day, no less. Women were selling the little green peppers from sacks as large as a child’s mattress. They are simply sauteed in olive oil until slightly charred, sprinkled with large grains of salt, served piled on a plate, and holding each by the stem, popped in the mouth in one bite. Sometimes one packs a little heat. They are ubiquitous in much of Spain and are outrageously inexpensive by our standards. It’s always a huge disappointment to order them here only to have a little dessert plate placed in front of me with a small handful of Padron’s gift to the world. Earth to Left Bank….

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  8. If you’re gonna do Spanish tapas you’ve GOT to have some pigs ear going around.

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    • @James_B, you will be happy to know that Willi’s Wine Bar will have pig ears on the menu soon.

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  9. Sounds great…and the pouring of the local wine (cider) is a site to behold. Can’t wait to try this.

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  10. Sounds so great, any news on when this will debut?

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    • Sometime in May, most likely.

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