Napa Travel Diary

My Napa weekend with the girls is still on my mind – four months later.

It was THAT good.

On a personal level, it was nice to travel for just myself – not for business, not with my husband – and just be me for a hot minute. I’d nearly forgotten who I was when all my other roles are stripped away. It was eye-opening, and something I’m still figuring out.

And honestly – who can say no to a weekend with girlfriends, wine, and really excellent food?

And sleep. Sweet, sweet sleep.

Is it time for round 2?

PLANNING RESOURCES

WHERE TO STAY IN NAPA

BLACK ROCK INN
3100 Silverado Trail N
St Helena, CA 94574

This charming B&B is a perfect place to stay for a Napa getaway. The rooms are beautifully appointed with beds as comfortable as clouds and huge soaking tubs in the bathrooms. The owner, Jeff, whips up an excellent breakfast every morning per your dietary restrictions (his gluten-free cinnamon cake was amazing). The Black Rock Inn is centrally located between Yountville and St. Helena, but tucked away in a quiet, wooded hill.

I don’t know if it was the wine, the beds, or the quiet inn – but I’ve never slept better in my entire life.

WHERE TO EAT IN NAPA

BOON FLY CAFE
4048 Sonoma Highway
Napa, CA 94559

This was our first stop in Napa, and a welcome one. We were hangry.

We sat down to brunch, glasses of sparkling wine and Bloody Marys, and talked our faces off after a little wait. I had the chilequiles (highly recommend), a cup of tea, and a glass of Domaine Carneros. Actually, I had two. #whenmamasaway

BOTTEGA
6525 Washington Street
Yountville, CA 94599

After we dropped off our things at the Inn, we made our way to Yountville for a few tastings and walking along the main stretch of town. This restaurant was as beautiful as it was delicious. I drank whatever Victoria ordered for the table and enjoyed my risotto (so much that I forgot to talk to anyone). It was a perfect meal to end a perfect day.

GOTT’S
933 Main Street
St Helena, CA 94574

We spent the next day in St. Helena, and started with an early lunch at this funky roadside diner. I ordered the chili and an order of French fries, which were delicious. Like, scrape the bowl for every last drop delicious. With rain in our forecast for the rest of the day, it was nice to eat something hearty and cozy underneath the cloudy sky.

FARMSTEAD
738 Main Street
St Helena, CA 94574

Classic California cuisine in a restored barn, this restaurant is as Napa as it gets. We enjoyed more wine (Victoria’s pick again), salads, and I had their chili (yes, again). It was a cozy, hearty and heart-filled meal – perfect for our last night together.

(Yes, I have a thing with chili.)

WHERE TO DRINK IN NAPA

DOMAINE CHANDON
1 California Drive
Yountville, CA 94599

One of Napa’s famous sparkling wine producers, Chandon is the perfect spot to kick off a wine tasting weekend. The rain stopped just as we arrived, with the sun peeking out from the clouds. We ordered two bottles (a sparkling rosé and a red), wiped down some chairs on the patio, and enjoyed the beautiful fall day. Our weather luck continued as we walked back into Yountville for more wine.

GIRARD
6795 Washington Street
Yountville, CA 94599

Thanks to the power of social media, Girard was recommended by one of Hallie’s followers as we debated where to go next. The winery was a new stop for all of us (including our two SF natives), but their reds were full of flavor and warming. In my relaxed state, I ended up ordering a case of their red blend and petite syrah, which have been perfect for cold winter days at home.

REDMON
867 Dowdell Lane
St Helena, CA 94574

Redmon is really special, and my favorite tasting from the entire trip. The winery began with a win at a home winemaking competition, by two women who were working in finance and business. They left their day jobs and started Redmon, which produces some of the most beautiful, full-bodied reds I’ve ever had. Lisa (one of the founders) was so warm and welcoming – it really felt like we were sitting in a friend’s home, just catching up. I was actually sad to leave this tasting, and I can’t wait to go back again. In the meantime, I have their club membership and another case to keep me company.

MA(I)SONRY
6711 Washington Street
Yountville, CA 94599

I’ve heard Victoria talk about Ma(i)sonry for years now, and was thrilled to finally experience it for myself. Tucked in a gorgeous mansionette in Yountville, Ma(i)sonry houses a curated selection of small batch wineries and gorgeous art galleries for a truly special experience. I had Victoria select my wines for the tasting (my goal for this trip was to make no decisions at all), and gave her my ordering card again at the end of the tasting to select which bottles to ship home.

I’m very, very lucky to call Victoria one of my close friends – and not just for her incredible wine knowledge. Though that helps too.

We got caught in a torrential downpour as we left Ma(i)sonry and hid inside a random restaurant/bar to wait it out until dinner. The spectacular sunset, though, was worth it.

It was kind of the perfect end to a wonderful weekend.

Have you been to Napa? What were some of your favorite spots from your visit? COMMENT below and let me know!

P.S -if you’re in the mood for a quick getaway, here’s what we did in Vancouver and Charleston.

  • Telicia Allen

    I’ve never been. Can’t wait to go! This sounds like a perfect solo vacation too!

    • hithaonthego

      It would make a great solo trip! I may have to do one when I’m in Northern California for my book signing…

  • Jessie Buckmaster

    Love! I’ve been wanting to do a Napa getaway forever, I visited a lot as a kid but haven’t been back since I was old enough to drink!! Now that I’m back in Sacramento, this needs to be a priority, it’s so close! Also, my in-laws love Domaine Chandon, they always have a few bottles on hand.

    • hithaonthego

      Aaaah! You MUST plan a trip immediately – if not sooner!

  • Jennifer Horner

    I live in Sonoma County and we spend most of our time on this side of the mountain. However, I’m planning a day trip to Napa soon so these tips will come in handy!

    • hithaonthego

      Be sure to check out Victoria’s guide as well! It. Is. The. Best.

  • Pingback: What To Pack and Wear For A Weekend In Napa Valley, California()

  • Pingback: Win A Signed Copy Of How To Pack and a $150 Gift Card to Sweet & Spark()

  • Pingback: Glenmere Mansion Is the Perfect Weekend Getaway from NYC. Here's Why.()