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Napa Valley

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Leah S

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Napa Valley

by Leah S » Wed Feb 20, 2019 11:48 am

We'll be there briefly next month. Already have a reservation at The French Laundry. Looking for less expensive but interesting lunch and dinner for the preceding day. I'm generally not a huge fan of Japanese cuisine, but am intrigued by the Morimoto Napa menu. Where else can we go? We'll likely only have time for maybe 2 or 3 wine tastings so which are your favorites?
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Robin Garr

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Re: Napa Valley

by Robin Garr » Wed Feb 20, 2019 12:26 pm

It's been a few years since I've been back there, but Bistro Don Giovanni is a long, long-term favorite of our WineLovers Forum geeks. Lovely atmosphere indoors and out and solid Italian country cooking with a lighter California touch. Not much is cheap in Napa, but I'd say the menu pricing is somewhere parallel with Di Fabio's and maybe a bit cheaper than Volare.
http://bistrodongiovanni.com/
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Re: Napa Valley

by Leah S » Wed Feb 20, 2019 2:26 pm

That does look good! And it's only 4 minutes from our hotel. Recommendations for a winery tour/tasting?
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Re: Napa Valley

by Robin Garr » Wed Feb 20, 2019 3:06 pm

There are so many, it kind of comes down to "visit the places where they make wines you like." :) And avoid weekends if you can, because of the traffic.

I always like to start a trip at Hess Winery, though. The wine is good, but more important, the winery is a beauty, with a self-guided winery tour wrapped around a modern art museum of real quality. It's up Mount Veeder from the city of Napa, giving you a scenic drive away from the mob on the valley floor, but it's not that long a trip, maybe 15 minutes from the town.
https://www.hesscollection.com/

Clos Pegase also has good wine, a spectacular winery designed by Michael Graves, and a public art collection, and it's right in the valley in the Calistoga region.
https://www.clospegase.com/
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Re: Napa Valley

by Leah S » Wed Feb 20, 2019 4:00 pm

Thank you so much! Since hubby is a painter and professor of art history those sound perfect.
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Robin Garr

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Re: Napa Valley

by Robin Garr » Wed Feb 20, 2019 5:55 pm

In fairness, a lot of wine geeks might make other recommendations in order to taste trophy wines and stuff like that. But even though I'm just an amateur art lover, I really enjoy stopping at those two places. And their wines really are good to drink, even if not trophies.
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Jay M.

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Re: Napa Valley

by Jay M. » Wed Feb 20, 2019 11:24 pm

Congrats on scoring the French Laundry rez. Very tough to get. Please give us a report.

Domaine Chandon for excellent tour and primer on sparkling wine production. Had an excellent guide

Inglenook, fka Rubicon or Niebaum-Coppola is good for its storied history and Francis Ford Coppola ownership (his movie mementos are there). Also, info on his daughter’s eponymous Sofia sparkling.

Agree on Hess - good.

Mondavi is very well done. He started it all.

Grgich Hills for the wine, the story, and Mike Grgich. Have fun.

Lots of places you can buy a bottle and some food and picnic on their grounds.
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JustinHammond

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Re: Napa Valley

by JustinHammond » Thu Feb 21, 2019 9:13 am

We loved the cave tour at Del Dotto.

https://www.deldottovineyards.com/Visit-us
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