As promised, I am sharing highlights from our recent California wine country getaway. I have to say it is truly in one of the most beautiful regions of the country. The lush landscapes, vineyards and valleys are truly breathtaking. In addition to it's natural beauty, it is filled with the most delectable culinary delights, unique shopping locales and of course the best wines produced in the US. I could go on all day sharing my favorite destinations but in an effort to stay short winded, I will give you the the "cliffs notes" with only the best of the best!
Located on the historic plaza in the upscale town of Healdsburg, Myra Hoefer's showroom is not to be missed. Myra is a brilliant designer that uniquely combines the laid back California aesthetic with a sophisticated modern flair. I loved her oversized glazed jardinieres that would make a beautiful statement on a terrace or in the garden.
If you head south to the main street in St. Helena, you will stumble upon the utterly unique showroom belonging to designer Erin Martin. Filled with unique curiosities as well as a great collection of interesting books this is a one-of-a kind shopping experience!
I had a hard time categorizing this unique local but since I wanted to buy almost everything inside it's four walls I had to put it in the shopping category. Maisonry is a winery, art gallery and home furnishings store rolled into one. Sip refreshing Sauvignon Blanc while you peruse the gallery and then curl up in one of the comfy outdoor lounge chairs and enjoy an afternoon of the most relaxing and visually inspiring wine tasting. This place is a must!
This may come as a surprise, given our most recent choice of vacation locales but I am not a big drinker. Touring winery after winerytasting wine after wine is not my idea of fun. In fact, it's a great way for me to get a headache.
I tell you this only to forewarn you that we did not hit every winery the region has to offer and thus I am no expert on the best places to taste if you visit the Napa Valley area. That said, I did enjoy most of the vineyards and wineries we visited.
Francis Ford Coppola Winery
Francis Ford Coppola Winery
While highly commercialized, Francis Ford Coppola's winery is a must see if you in the region. The estate is beautiful and the wine is good, but the stories behind the wine made this winery most interesting and enjoyable.
Kunde Family Estate Winery
The Kunde Family Estate Winery was another favorite. We were given a cave tour which was fascinating and fun. The winery happened to be hosting a fundraiser for the humane society on the day we visited. The animals were given their own tastings too. I overheard that the "mint mojito" was a big hit with the canine crew!
Benziger Family Winery
The Benziger Winery was another highlight on our wine tour. We took an extensive tour and learned about not only the wine but the entrepreneurial family that creates it. Committed to sustainability, and boidynamic farming methods, this wine has a unique flair. The 2007 Estate Pinot was out of this world!
Eating was certainly the highlight of our trip. I only wish I could have fit more food in my stomach! By the last night I couldn't eat another bite.
Gott's Roadside in St. Helena served up the best burgers I have ever tasted. A local dive, this place is piece of classic Americana. We had to make several trips to get our Gott's fix over the course of the vacation. There is always a line, but it is well worth the wait. The ahi tuna burger was delish!
A Napa Valley destination restaurant in St. Helena, the food and ambiance at Martini House were divine. We sat in front of the open kitchen and watched the chef's work their magic.
A Thomas Keller masterpiece, this Yountville restaurant is amazing. Serving up French bistro cuisine with an authentic Parisian flair, you don't want to miss this meal! For starters, try the bibb salad and be sure not to leave without tasting the chocolate bouchouns. Yum!
There were so many places to love, and I feel that I have only scratched the surface on our amazing trip! It was truly a delightful getaway!!