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  Napa Valley     [all categories]
  Napa Valley - Wineries to Visit
  1st visit

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Author Topic:   1st visit
VAwinelover
Junior Member
posted 07-05-2011 05:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for VAwinelover     Edit/Delete Message
Thank you so much, damombo! Your itinerary is very helpful. I will take your advice and look up the wineries you suggested. And if we get to Hendry, I'll post about it. Thanks again for taking the time to answer!

IP: 96.231.60.58

damombo
Member
posted 07-05-2011 03:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for damombo   Click Here to Email damombo     Edit/Delete Message
Whoops - missed the part about Hendry. Never been there, but Yelpers love 'em - they look like a good place to visit. If you go, please let us know how you enjoyed it!

IP: 96.8.187.200

damombo
Member
posted 07-05-2011 03:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for damombo   Click Here to Email damombo     Edit/Delete Message
Welcome, VAwinelover!

Have you made dinner reservations at those two restaurants? If not, you might go ahead and do that. Summer is supposed to be a fairly busy time, so just to be safe, I'd make reservations.

So, you are going to find a wide range of tasting fees and some will, others won't, refund with purchase... If the fee is higher than you feel comfortable paying, but you still want to taste at a particular place, you can always share a tasting.

You will have a car, and it sounds like you don't mind driving, so what I would do is split the valley in half and stay in the northern half on the day you plan to eat at Mustard's. Perhaps two before lunch and two after? Leave Napa (city) and use the Silverado Trail to head north - I suggest the Siverado Trail because it is less busy and so very scenic. It is about 30 miles to Calistoga.
We just recently attended a dinner that featured Vincent Arroyo wines and we enjoyed them very much (ordered a mixed case). Vince is delightful and so is his son-in-law. You would probably meet them if you tasted there. They are a small, family owned and run winery, and I think that they do not charge a tasting fee. This could be your first stop - but call and make a reservation. If you do, tell them that a lady that was at the dinner in Kerrville sent you Next, you could go across Calistoga and visit Bennett Lane - my buddy Hawkeye recommends a visit there. After these two, stop in Calistoga for lunch - we like the Palisades Deli for great sandwiches. After lunch, you could head south on 29 to see the main road. Perhaps a stop at Madrigal (reservation suggested) We have been twice and loved the wines and the experience. Another family winery - and this family has deep roots in the Napa Valley. After Madrigal, perhaps head down to Yountville, park and walk to a couple of tasting rooms. And Michael Chiarello has a NapaStyle store there which is fun to look around - plus you can taste his wines in the store (and they are, by my palate, fabulous). Then head the two miles back to Mustards for dinner.

The day you want to eat at Celadon (one of my favorites - so good choice!) explore the other half of the valley. You mentioned Domaine Carneros. If you want to try sparkling, then perhaps go there first on that day. Maybe after Domaine Carneros, as you are heading through Napa toward the other wineries, you could pick up a picnic lunch - over on the Silverado Trail is Soda Canyon Grocery and they have wonderful sandwiches and salads and so forth. Or there is a Whole Foods - and maybe a Trader Joe's - on Trancas at 29 which would have plenty of picnic stuff. So, then maybe go to Elyse (small, family run), then Baldacci (small, family run) and ask if you can have your picnic there.... Head south and visit Biale (one of my all time faves). Then you could head back into Napa (city) and park near Celadon and wander over to some of the tasting rooms in town. Ceja is fun and I think that there are quite a few downtown now...

All of these wineries have webpages, so google them and read and see if they might interest you.

Eat a hearty breakfast, even if you aren't a breakfast eater - and pour out any wine you aren't thrilled with - you want to make it through the day so that you can enjoy your dinner!!

Hope this helps - good luck and enjoy!
Cheers!

IP: 96.8.187.200

VAwinelover
Junior Member
posted 07-05-2011 04:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for VAwinelover     Edit/Delete Message
I hope I am not posting too late to get some advice, but I just found this forum after WEEKS of internet research. My husband and I will be visiting Napa and the Central Coast region of CA next week for the first time. We arrive in Napa on Sunday and will be staying in Napa until Wednesday when we head down to the Central Coast. I really have no idea about which wineries to visit in the Napa area. I've read so many suggestions on Trip Advisor and Yelp that I'm totally overwhelmed. Here is some more information. My husband and I enjoy both reds and whites and probably would enjoy smaller, more personal wineries. We are used to VA wineries where we pay @ $10 for tasting and get that back when purchasing. We will be driving a rental car so really have no limits on where we go. Also, we want to eat at Mustards Grill one night and Celadon on another. I would appreciate any and all suggestions and hope that I am not posting too late to get reservations if necessary. Thank you!!!

By the way, we probably won't arrive at Napa until about 4:00 on Sunday. Also, I've read about the Hendry winery and Domaine Carneros and they both seem interesting. Any opinion on those? Should we work them in?

[This message has been edited by VAwinelover (edited 07-05-2011).]

IP: 96.231.60.58

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