Wishbone Restaurant Returns to Petaluma

Morning treats, community gatherings and the old Wishbone vibe are back for the foreseeable future.

After selling Wishbone last January, Miriam Donaldson was ready to embrace a new career in herbal healing, far from the hot stoves and stress of running her popular Petaluma restaurant.

Now, the tireless chef, busser, expediter, butcher, baker and candlestick lighter has once again tied on her apron at the longtime cafe she runs with husband Josh Norwitt and daughter Poppy.

The U-turn came about earlier this month when the new tenant for the space Wishbone occupied, Stephane Saint Louis and Steven Vargas with their restaurant Table Culture Provisions, decided it wasn’t a good fit for their fledgling eatery. After six months in the location and two months of remodels, they are moving on.

“At the end of the day, it wasn’t the right space and they were looking for something different,” Donaldson said.

Miriam Donaldson on the patio of Wishbone restaurant in Petaluma. Heather Irwin/Press Democrat
Miriam Donaldson on the patio of Wishbone restaurant in Petaluma. (Heather Irwin/Sonoma Magazine)
"Hot Mess" breakfast with polenta, fried egg, kale, kimchi and "pickled things" at Wishbone. Heather Irwin/Press Democrat
“Hot Mess” breakfast with polenta, fried egg, kale, kimchi and “pickled things” at Wishbone. (Heather Irwin/Sonoma Magazine)

With two years left on their lease, Donaldson said they’ll continue at the location, offering morning treats, community gatherings and the old Wishbone vibe for the foreseeable future.

“It’s nice to be back. I know how to be here,” Donaldson said during brunch service last Sunday. The former 3 Cooks location on Petaluma Boulevard has become a neighborhood favorite with offbeat, comforting dishes that draw from local farms and Donaldson’s signature sass, like the Hot Mess, a dish of polenta with kale, kimchi and other pickled ingredients.

Saint Louis and Vargas, whose restaurant was gaining serious traction for upscale farm-to-table dishes, are planning to move to another recently vacated Petaluma restaurant location.

Once there, they will partner with Asombrosa Farm in Petaluma, a 65-acre plot with a 7,000-square-foot barn. Table Culture Provisions will have a small culinary garden and vineyard, according to Saint Louis. Details are still few on the reopening of Table Culture Provisions, but Saint Louis called the farm partnership a “dream situation.”

Wishbone is at 841 Petaluma Blvd. N., open 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday through Sunday, with additional hours and changes posted at facebook.com/wishbonepetaluma

More Sonoma dining news…

The Sonoma County Veg Fest takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. this Sunday, Sept. 26, at the Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building. The celebration of vegan food is a chance to meet forward-thinking vendors who are advocating for compassionate, healthy and environmentally responsible living, according to organizers.

Eclipse nondairy frozen desserts will have soft serve sweets; other vendors include Taco Sagrado Vegan Tacos, Vegan Hood Chefs, Fourteen Magpies jams and preserves, Sporgy Mushroom Jerky, Morning Ritual Bakery, Biey Leaf Vegan Chef, Wellnut Farms, Coffee and Cumin Bakery and Jewels of the Forest Farms. $10 entry, 1351 Maple Ave. Santa Rosa. socovegfest.org