November 15, 2013

Napa | Day Two

We spent our last day of the trip exploring some of the little towns in Napa Valley and taking in a few more wine tastings before heading back to San Francisco.

Wine Tasting #8: Grgich Hills
We learned about this winery at a wine tasting at our hotel our first night in Napa. A representative from the winery came to our hotel, let us taste a couple of their wines, and told us some of the history of the vineyard. What excited Shelby and I is that they offer grape crushing!! They are the only vineyard in Napa that does this and the weekend we were there happened to be the last weekend of grape crushing for the season. My only exposure to grape crushing was from an I Love Lucy episode and Shelby and I thought it would be a fun way to end our trip.
It was pretty chilly that day and as the grapes sit outside they were FREEZING but it was still really fun.
As part of the grape crushing you put your grape footprints on a t-shirt that you get to take home.
We did a tasting here too and bought a few more bottles. Our favorites were the Chardonnay, the red Zinfandel, and the Cabernet.
After the tasting we walked around downtown Yountville. There is some cute shopping and some of the area's best restaurants are located in this town.
 As per usual Shelby and Dad are sitting on a bench on their phones
 We had lunch at Bottega and it was SO yummy. Chef Michael Chiarello was a James Beard semifinalist in 2012 for best new restaurant.
 We sat outside on the patio by a giant fireplace. Perfect atmosphere, perfect service, and perfect food.

Wine Tasting #9: Duckhorn Vineyards
Unknowingly we saved the best wine tasting for last. This winery was recommended to us by several different people so we decided to make it our last stop on the way out of town.
This was the only tasting where we were seated and didn't feel rushed. Most of the tastings we did were just standing at a bar. I loved that each wine we tasted came with a card we could take home listing all the facts about the wine. That makes it so much easier to remember what we liked and what we didn't. However the only wine I didn't like was the white...we got to taste 5 of the best red wines I've ever tasted.
The best (and the most expensive) wine we tasted was a bonus pour we received called The Discussion. Best. Wine. Ever
After the tasting we explored the vineyard a little bit. The one thing we didn't get to do this trip that I wished we had is a formal tour of a vineyard and getting to learn a little more about the wine making process.
Back to San Fran...
Our hotel for the night was right on the beach.
This was Shelby's first trip to California and this was her first time ever seeing the Pacific Ocean. It was way too cold to go walk along the beach though.
And the day ended with another perfect sunset. 

Shelby and I were slated to take the red eye back to NYC that night but I ended up getting very sick right at the last minute. So, Shelby flew home without me and I stayed an extra night with my parents (lucky that they had a hotel room) and flew back the next morning. Kind of a crummy end to a great trip.

However, overall, it was a great trip and we came away with a lot of wine that I cannot wait to drink! : )

Until Next Time

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