Luma’s New Menu Hits the Mark in Downtown Petaluma

Best bets include fat steak fries, fancy toasts, winter polenta and creative $10 cocktails during happy hour.

I wasn’t overwhelmed when I first visited Petaluma’s Luma restaurant in late 2022. The restaurant from Shuckery co-owner Jazmine Lalicker was brilliant in concept — primarily meatless, focused on sustainability — if not in execution.

Small slices of beef were served on small plates, a la carte, without context. Duck wing rillette was fine, but again, it wasn’t exactly clear how to consume a ramekin of duck without crackers or other accoutrements. The flatbread was a flop.

But with a substantial menu overhaul, time and maturity, Luma has become luminous. It still keeps its focus on mindful eating and locally sourced ingredients.

The menu still focuses on plant-based dishes. But it now includes a wider variety of meat, including stand-up-and-take-notice lamb meatballs in piquant harissa marinara ($16), McFarland Springs trout with bell peppers and gigante beans ($38), roasted chicken with Brussels sprouts ($32), or Greek flatbread with ground lamb, herbed goat cheese and roasted peppers ($24).

Now, meat has meaning on the menu rather than being a confusing side dish.

The Changeling cocktail with Aquavit and gin from Luma Bar and Eatery in Petaluma. (John Burgess/The Press Democrat)
The Changeling cocktail with Aquavit and gin from Luma Bar and Eatery in Petaluma. (John Burgess/The Press Democrat)

Best bets include fat steak fries ($10) with a trio of dipping sauces (the chimichurri is the winner).

The kitchen understands precisely how to do beans, cooking them to a toothy outside and creamy inside. The plump gigantes in the Bean Gratin appetizer ($16) is served with caramelized onions, breadcrumbs, chimichurri, and herbed goat cheese for a satisfying winter warmer.

Fancy Toasts (three for $22) are a great share plate, covered with toppers like ricotta, pears and hot honey; Brie and pistachios; or bacon jam and herbed goat cheese.

The biggest winner of the evening, however, was the Winter Polenta ($24) with roasted seasonal vegetables (in this case, several types of root vegetables) and creamy polenta with cheese and breadcrumbs.

The portions aren’t exactly small, but they’re not heaping helpings, and added to some appetizers and flatbread, more than substantial. Do not miss the Tau Fu Fa ($12) for dessert, a spiced coconut pot de crème with fresh citrus.

Cocktails are still a focus, with plenty of creative twists, and the restaurant has added a happy hour with $10 drink specials and a Stemple Creek burger for $20.

A small brunch menu is available 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sundays. Located at 50 East Washington St., Petaluma, it is also open for lunch and dinner from 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., happy hour daily from 3 to 5 p.m. Closed Mondays — more details at