Last fall I had the pleasure of spending 90 minutes with SingleThread chef and owner Kyle Connaughton at the outstanding Healdsburg restaurant he and his wife Katina Connaughton opened just over a year ago. Three weeks after the interview, I took my wife there for dinner for her birthday – from the dramatic tablescape of tiny ‘plates’ that welcomed us to the phenomenal wine and sake pairings, it was one of the best meals I’ve ever had.

It was a crazy time in wine country – I interviewed Kyle just three weeks after fires began sweeping through the North Bay. He and Katina were gearing up for a fundraiser and were also preparing hundreds of meals every week for those who’d been displaced from their homes.

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At SingleThread in Healdsburg, diners are greeted with a spread of tiny “plates” of delicacies in shells and on little wooden planks.