Sometimes the best part about living in frenetic Las Vegas is how easy it is to get out of town for the weekend. Yet, in all of my years here (five, off and on), I’d never been to Napa. On a recent weekend, I changed that, heading to northern California with my friend Leora.
After the easiest Southwest flight, I landed in San Francisco for a night on the town. We met up with one of my favorite travel bloggers/photographers/writers, Kristin Luna, of Camels and Chocolate. For some reason, the only pictures we took were on my BlackBerry, which later died. Spending more time with this talented, amazing girl is the top reason I want to go back to San Fran soon!
The next morning, Leora and I took off for Napa, giddy as two schoolgirls. We jumped out of our car at the Golden Gate bridge, running around with our cameras and making other tourists take a million pictures of us until we got that perfect one (see above!).
The drive was short and easy, and we arrived at Oxbow Public Market (food, wine, cupcakes, cheese) for lunch. We headed right for the Hog Island oysters and pulled up a chair at the bar. We swallowed down some champagne and a dozen of the most delicious oysters we’d ever had, shucked right in front of us.
Next we drove the rural, scenic Silverado Trail, stopping in a few wineries, including Stag’s Leap and Casa Nuestra. We didn’t linger long though – we were eager to get to Yountville. We checked into our room at Napa Valley Lodge, which we loved. The rooms were spacious, and it was close enough to walk to wineries like Jessop Cellars, our favorite. That night, we took the old-fashioned trolley to Ad Hoc for dinner. The farm-to-table hotspot famously serves one meal a night. We were in love. The “simple” salad, meat and potatoes were some of the best we’d ever had. Really, the ingredients were so fresh and tasty, it was all we talked about for the entire two-hour meal.
After such an amazing dinner, and just enough wine to make us sleepy, we headed back to the hotel to jump in the hot tub. Needless to say, we both slept like babies that night! In the morning, we headed to Redd for brunch. We shared the prosciutto breakfast pizza, with arugula, screambled eggs and crème fraiche, which was almost magical. The food in Napa almost outshines the wine. It’s that good!
Our trip was over way too fast, as we both had to fly home Sunday for work. Now, I’m dying to go back. It was such an easy, relaxing trip that I can’t believe we don’t go more often.
In Napa, you really can’t go wrong. But these are my recommendations:
Oxbow Public Market: 610 & 644 First Street, Napa, California
Napa Valley Lodge: 2230 Madison Street, Yountville, CA 94599, 888-944-3545
Ad Hoc: 6476 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599, 707.944.2487
Redd: 6480 Washington Street, Yountville CA 94599, 707 944.2222
Jessop Cellars: 6740 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599, 707.944.8523