Dining Guide for the Top Restaurants at Graton Casino in Rohnert Park
"Our restaurants are an essential ingredient in attracting and entertaining people, and giving them a reason—more than gambling—to come back often," said casino general manager Joe Hasson.
The casino lies in the Wine Country heart of some of the world's best food and wine production, so eating certainly can't be an afterthought here, in either quality or diversity.
You therefore won't find a generic buffet here, but instead a mix of small chains and independent, local eateries, all handpicked by the casino's owners, the Graton Rancheria Federated Indians.
Taking the epicurean spotlight is Tony Gemignani, chef and owner of a slew of West Coast restaurants like Tony's of North Beach and Slice House, both of which have outposts here. Other notable casino restaurants include the casino-owned 630 Park Steakhouse, the full-service Daily Grill, the eclectic Boathouse Asian Eatery, and a 24-hour, 500-seat Marketplace featuring seven casual eateries.
For an overview of what to expect and what to eat, here's a look at the full-service restaurants:
An 11-time World Championship of Pizza Makers winner, chef-owner Tony Gemignani takes his 'za seriously. He offers eight different styles of pies, including Napoletana, (wood-fired at 900°); cracker crust (650° in a brick oven); 16-inch New York style; and a thick and rectangular Sicilian style. There's also Roman style, a trio of separate pies joined together on a giant wood cutting board.
Don't miss Tony's gluten-free-crust pies, either, including a vegetarian model. For other appetites, there are family-style pasta dinners, big salads, and subs with giant meatballs— marvelous tennis-ball-sized rounds that seem to swim in rich tomato sauce.
Partner-owner and chef Catherine Do covers the gamut of Asian cuisines here, including Japanese, traditional Chinese, and Vietnamese. Hers is an upscale experience, with a centerpiece oyster and sushi bar; an up-lit tree reaching high toward the second floor loft; dramatic pendant lighting; and a white-brick wall painted with a theatrical Japanese mural of an octopus.
Among the sushi and stir-fry, you'll find fancier dishes like a whole salt-and-pepper crab topped with red onion and colorful peppers, plus authentic dishes like a silky Chinese congee studded with ground pork and preserved egg.
This fun West Coast chain is an upscale bistro, with a long, welcoming bar in front and quieter dining in the back. Featuring American comfort food with Mediterranean accents, the star attraction at is a glorious chicken potpie: big as a hubcap and sumptuous with poultry, veggies, and savory thick gravy between golden rafts of puff pastry.
We're just as excited about the meatloaf, loaded with mushrooms and rounded out with creamy spinach mash. The chef also manages to tempt us with delicious dishes that are 600 calories or less, such as crab-stuffed salmon, and herb chicken caprese draped in mozzarella.
Owned by the casino, this posh place evokes the high style of Las Vegas, featuring a backlit bar in the front room and a wall of fire in the back.
The meat is Prime grade Midwest- and California-raised, and wet/dry aged for a minimum of 28 days. Yet there's plenty of local flair, too, from Sonoma County dairy and cheeses to chicken, lamb, produce, and of course, wines.
For opulence, it's hard to beat the 12 oz. California Wagyu slathered in gorgonzola crust, alongside au gratin potatoes decorated with Hobbs bacon and roasted wild mushrooms.
Details: Graton Resort & Casino, 288 Golf Course Drive W., Rohnert Park.
After a day of serious play, you'll want to settle in for the night so you can get a bright and early start in the morning. Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton Rohnert Park offers a complimentary hot breakfast, free Wi-Fi, a fitness facility, and pool. Eco-friendly Oxford Suites Sonoma County includes 163 non-smoking executive suites and an onsite restaurant. And located near the bowling center, the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel Sonoma Wine Country features 245 guestrooms and a selection of suites.
A number of other national chains offer lodging in Rohnert Park; to learn more read Where to Stay in Rohnert Park.
Written by Sonoma Insider Carey Sweet.