After trying to restore my Apple Notes after a rage quit, I have realised the rage quit was the Right Thing to do.
Apple Notes (on Mavericks and iOS etc) should be called Apple Records. It's a database. Nary a .txt or .rtf to be found in the file system.
You can restore ~/Library/Containers/com.apple.Notes/Data/Library/Notes/ but iCloud will see you did a rage quit already and delete them all again based on date.
Time Machine is not talking to Notes, so good luck. (Potential for a 20th century style system clock workaround maybe? But I can't be arsed to try).
Of course my Notes are just notes, I don't particularly care - I do care about ASCII and Unicode and markdown, I don't care for little text files being holed up in a fricking database. Touch each record, I'm sure they could be restored back to iCloud but right now that doesn't happen.
For now, I'm keeping my notes as text files on Dropbox and using the text editor of my choice to keep notes. Notes that I know could be restored by an air ninja if required.