On August 1, I turned 21! On my actual birthday, my family and I went to brunch at our country club, and I had mimosas. It was a rather calm 21st kick-off, but I didn’t want to over do because we were going to Yountville for four days of wine tasting, and I didn’t want to be hungover on the drive down. So, when we got to Yountville, we had a day of walking around, eating, and wine tasting in the various tasting rooms. On Monday, we rented a Mercedes van, and went to three different, amazing wineries. On Tuesday, we just explored Yountville, and wine tasted, and then had a really amazing dinner at Hurley’s. On Wednesday, we got breakfast, then headed home. It was such a great trip, and I wanted to share some snapshots from it.
Two quick snapshots from brunch with the family on my actual birthday!
I wore an Anthropologie dress, and my sister gave me a tiara and sash to wear. The first day in Yountville, my friend, Kate from school met us to wine taste and for dinner. While she couldn’t stay the whole time, I was so happy she at least made it for a day. I haven’t seen her that much lately because she was in Australia for spring semester, and then summer happened, and we live 3 hours apart. I had the best day! We also went to Pacific Blues for dinner, which was great, and was a recommendation from my friend, Megan, who lives in Napa.
On the official wine tasting day, we started at Castello di Amorosa, which translates to the Castle of Love. It was probably the coolest winery in terms of just appearance because it’s a legitimate castle! It’s over 100,000 sq. ft., took 7 years to build, and cost about $40 million. Crazy, huh? So anyway, the wine tasting experience was awesome as well because we spent about 40 minutes just walking around, and exploring the castle, then we went down to the tasting room. All the wine was really good! I ended up getting two bottles, a wine glass, and a ceramic, hand painted shot glass as souvenirs. The wine is only sold on location or online, so it’s somewhat difficult to get.
After the castle, we headed to Mumm Champagne, which was also fun! Their tasting set up was a little more confusing, but we all tried different things and really enjoyed it. I ended up buying a bottle of one of the champagnes you can’t just go buy at a store.
We ended our day at Alpha Omega, which unfortunately I didn’t get any photos of (blame the alcohol). However, everyone in my group agreed that this place had the best tasting experience. We got to sit on really comfortable couches by a water fountain, and just taste on our own time. I bought a bottle of white wine from them, and I would recommend including this winery on your list if you ever go tasting in Napa.
In terms of food, we got sandwiches from Yountville Deli before we left, and ate them while traveling between the wineries. Even thought they were jsut sandwhiches, they were amazing! For dinner, we went to Redd Wood, where I had the best spaghetti bolonegnese ever. Like honestly. My dad lived with an Italian while working in the Bay Area, and he said it reminded him of when the roommate used to cook authentic Italian. Such a good meal! They also had vegan, chilled corn chowder that was to die for! After dinner, we had champagne by the fire pit at our hotel (Napa Valley Lodge, sister to the Lafayette Park).
On Tuesday, we had breakfast, then walked around The Marketplace, which sells awesome artwork, wine, and souvenirs. I bought some Yountville coasters, and a Napa Valley long-sleeved shirt. I also tried Bouchon Bakery, which was superb! Honestly, so so good! I had never been, but always heard it was delicious.
I didn’t get photos of my two outfits on the last day, or my meal at Hurley’s, but I wore a white dress during the day, and a coral dress in the evening. Overall, I had the best trip. I know it may seem odd to ring in 21 with just family, but since I never drank before 21, I didn’t really want to go out and go crazy. Also, most of my really close friends live in the Bay, so it’s kind of hard to spend my 21st with all my friends. I think my friends and I may go wine tasting in September or October, when the last of us is 21.