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Chef Keller Goes Affordable on Yountville's Ass

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Quick trip out of the city ... Foodies may be following famed chef Thomas Keller's proposed luxury Yountville inn, another "value add" to the coterie of restaurants (The French Laundry, Ad Hoc, Bouchon and Bouchon Bakery) he already operates in the area. Following a bout with the Yountville Town Council, Keller has, in fact, been granted the right— and a $300,000 unsecured municipal loan— to build the 20 room getaway at the corner of Washington Street and Webber Avenue. The catch? Even Keller must fulfill the town's affordable housing regulations (the horror!). The plan: eleven of such apartments will reside on Keller's land (behind Ad Hoc, specifically). A funding crunch nearly halted the deal, Keller's attorney put the screws on the Council until the needed $300K materialized. The town is still skeptical and all, but building on both the homes and inn is set to begin next spring. Reservations? Judging by French Laundry's wait list, we're sure they'll begin accepting them soon enough.
· Keller's inn almost snagged on housing deal [Napa Valley Register]

[French Laundry it is; image courtesy Heiland Hoff Architecture]