Friday, October 28, 2011

Day 3 in Napa - Part One

We figured it was only fair that The French Laundry gets it's own post - plus today's bike can stand alone. It was a solid, enjoyable ~22 miles of biking. If I'm honest, it was the one day in Napa that I had more say than MrP. It was one of my 'must do' things for Napa. He booked it, but I pointed him in the right direction (and today, I had the final say in which route we took - determining how long we rode). Yep, I'm a bit of a planning nazi. Whatcha gonna do about it?!

Anyways, we checked in at Napa Valley Bike Tours just after 10 this morning for our self guided tour (meaning they'd deliver lunch at 1 to a winery along our way with a picnic area - which ended up being the beautiful Clos du Val since we knew they had a lovely, scenic area). They also picked up any purchases made throughout the day.

Starting out our route North out of Yountville on a beautiful, quiet country road

I loved this gnarly tree - and MrP loved the longhorns

Welcome to Napa Valley indeed!
We actually cycled through the Yountville, Stag's Leap, Oak Knoll wine districts

Opus One has a pretty cool building - even from the service road street

Hello gorgeous!

MrP heads in to visit our first winery stop - Silver Oak

The Tasting Room at Silver Oak

A couple from Pennsylvania took our picture in exchange for me taking theirs

Fountain looking from Tasting Room into vineyards
(none of which are Silver Oak's)
Purchased a 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon - Palmer count: 21

Our second winery visit,
another recommendation from our cycling guides,
Plumpjack Winery

MrP couldn't be serious for one shot after picking up a bottle of their Chardonnay
Palmer count: 22

Robert Sinskey Vineyards (crossing Silverado Trail was a bit challenging)

Tasting Room at Robert Sinskey

Sexy guy in bike shorts at Robert Sinskey
(AKA happy camper with a bottle of Zin being picked up for us)

Palmer count: 23

A second visit to stunning Clos du Val
but this time, it was to eat in their beautiful picnic area for lunch

Sandwiches, Apples, Water, Chocolates, Chips, Potato Salad for lunch

Enjoying lunch

I love hydrangeas and these were beautiful!
(MrP took my pic with these green ones rather than the pinkish ones that had a spider web among them)

We didn't stop, but rode past Trefethen Family Vineyards in our attempt to get to Chandon, then Elyse in time for our scheduled visit. We did enjoy the Trefethen wine with supper at The Cliff House, though.

What a day for a bike ride.

Here we are, cycling along

Making faces

And then the creep comes along and says "I'm gonna get you!"

So we stopped for a proper photo together

Domaine Chandon
We hadn't heard many complimentary things about the people working at Chandon,
but we had a great experience. Our tasting guy was playful, personable and gave "Canada"
an extra Signature sparkling wine glass (clean one for me, the one we used for MrP)

Beautiful grounds at Domaine Chandon
We did the Classic Flight to try the wines we knew we could get at home...

and discovered their classic brut is quite a tasty number. We'll pick that up at home!

Resting at Domaine Chandon

Redd - the restaurant by day
(since our visit was at 6:45 on Tuesday, we couldn't get a proper photo)

Since it was along the way, we took a few pics of the unassuming ex- Laundry

I can't wait to share our supper details...A-FREAKING-MAZING!

The French Laundry/Ad Hoc Gardens across the street from The French Laundry

More garden (there's little tags with the French Laundry logo indicating what's growing)

Elyse Winery, named after the daughter of the owner/winemaker
After trying their C'est si Bon and Cab Sauv Port at Redd, MrP had to try more.

They have a funny story about their brother label, Jacob Franklin

MrP pets the winery dog, an older Boxer genteman

Leaving with a bottle of C'est si Bon (It's so good)
Palmer count: 23

After our day of cycling, we headed back to the hotel for a shower, rest and preparation for our big night out. I feel like I should warn you - the photos were NOT great. The restaurant prefers no flash used (as is the case at most fine dining establishments), but were too nice last time to obviously tell us to turn the damn thing off. LOL

This time, we knew better, so our photos are not so amazing, but we met Chef Timothy Hollingsworth, took a kitchen tour and had an outstanding evening.


  1. You guys have had sooo much fun :) Love it.

  2. What an amazing day! The photos are just beautiful and you look so happy :) That winery looks fantastic and how fun that you got to picnic outside!


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