Napa Valley dining: Flavour fit for the gods

To reserve a table at The French Laundry in Napa Valley, you must pick up the phone and call precisely two months ahead of the day you wish to dine, from 10am local time.

You will hear a busy signal, at which point you should hang up and redial. You can expect to do this up to 400 times. Eventually, if you’re lucky, you’ll get a voice message requesting that you hold.

The wait is around 15 minutes before a real person picks up. When you ask that person for a table, she will tell you that you are too late.

If that sounds like something you’d enjoy doing from your home in New Zealand over successive mornings at 5am, then perhaps a meal at The French Laundry is for you.

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