Don’t confuse this Carmel Valley charm with the bank! With it’s dark wooden interior, candelabras, artwork and old school milieu, it’s a stark contrast to the fluorescent lighting and white walls of most banks. Will’s Fargo, established back in 1959 (by a man named Will Fay, surprise surprise), was designed to merge a Victorian-style parlor with a western ‘fargo’ way station and the result is a rustic, charming eatery that locals come back to time and time again and visitors will write home about.
We were fortunate enough to dine at the restaurant right after it went through a whole revamp process, with a restoration, new menu and new executive chef, Greg Karjala. The restaurant is conveniently located right next door to Jarman Tasting Room, where customers can go for pre-dinner drinks if they desire. Both Jarman and Will’s Fargo are owned by Holman Ranch, but each spot has its own wine label.
The menu is full of American delights, like salads, soups, fish, steak and more. Along with a glass of Pinot, we enjoyed the warm Cauliflower Soup, which was a special that evening, which served as the prelude to a delicious cut of Filet Mignon. All of their meats come with a choice of baked potato, twice baked potato or french fries, along with seasonal vegetables, plus the option to add caramelized onions or sauteed mushroom for a little extra moola. We went with the twice baked potato (amazing) and added caramelized onions, which is never a bad choice. Every bite was flavorful and tender and we were sad when we finally came to the last bite. The ingredients used at Will’s Fargo are mostly local, making it a real farm to table experience.
We finished our evening with their “Fondant” Au Chocolate, which was a soufflé with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce. It was rich and oozed out chocolate. It wasn’t our favorite chocolate soufflé we’ve ever had, but you really can’t go wrong with chocolate. Other desserts on the menu include chocolate and banana bread pudding, duet of creme bruleé, chevre cheesecake and more.
The waitstaff here was so friendly and accommodating, and the surroundings are truly one of a kind. If you’re in the area, it’s definitely a stop you need to make, whether it’s for dinner or just drinks, you’ll be glad you stopped in.
Twisted Talk: Have you ever dined at Will’s Fargo? Where do you stop for a bite to eat in Carmel Valley? Discuss below!