Daydream: Rural Calistoga

I loved Phifer Pavitt's tasting room.One of the (many) reasons I wanted to move to the San Francisco Bay Area was its proximity to the wine countries of Napa and Sonoma – and many others that will soon start to make an appearance on this blog. One of my very first trips after I moved here was to Calistoga, the northernmost town of Napa. I had never been to this neat little town known for its hot springs. It seemed like a throwback to the “old” Napa, from before Downtown Napa exploded and became trendy. I had actually noticed the last time I had been in southern Napa that people were starting to dress up more for the more scene-y restaurants. And I hadn’t even packed one pair of heels! As I wrote in Huffington Post, during my years living in Las Vegas, I always enjoyed my getaways to wine country, which I turned into my little escape, where I could be outside and learn about farming before heading back to to the bright lights of the Strip. It’s strange how a lot of people think Napa and such are so “fancy” – but it really is all about the land! In fact, I just wrote about Sonoma’s Benziger and the pictured Phifer Pavitt, in Calistoga, in a piece for Los Angeles Confidential about how eco-friendly wine country has become.

Well, Calistoga was rural and fabulous – with a walk-able old-fashioned downtown with great shopping. The above shot was taken in the tasting room of Phifer Pavitt, which is in a barn made of recycled materials such as blue jeans for insulation and a 1,000-pound piece of wood from one tree that hangs from the ceiling as the table for the tasting area.

It’s a bit of a longer drive from San Francisco – but worth every minute. It was quirky and fun, and the wines of course were great.

I can’t wait to go back!

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I'm a life-long travel junkie journalist who works hard to find adventure in everyday life after two years of travel and expat living.

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  1. Congrats on moving to San Francisco Bay area! Proximity to wine countries is always a great reason to choose an area to live. I moved to Croatia from Canada ten years ago, and while I never imagined many wine tours here, I was happy to learn that Croatia actually is a wine country. I’ve never visited Napa or Sonoma, but would love to.

  2. I can’t blame for wanting to return. Rural Calistoga really does look like a daydream. Wow!

  3. I’ve always wanted to go to Napa valley, sounds like an amazing trip, hope you can make it back soon

  4. Oh, it’s gorgeous! I’ve already been back many times lol.

  5. Many more pictures to come… It’s beautiful up there!

  6. I’ve always wanted to go to Croatia!! A good friend of mine actually goes quite often, and we’ve had a lovely picnic serving only Croatian wines. When I finally make it out there, I definitely want to see its wine country!

  7. I love Calistoga, too, and its position between the mountains is so pretty.

  8. Jealous! I’ve never been to Cali’s wine country. I wanna tag along on one of your adventures!

  9. I don’t spend enough time up in wine country! 😛 Great articles, btw!

  10. I hate that I have only been to San Francisco once. I went to a couple of wineries but with a friend who is not much of a drinker at all. I need to go with YOU!

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