Wine Country Getaway [Napa Style!]

Just a week ago Northern California was experiencing temperatures 15-20 degrees above normal which is pretty perfect for a long weekend. Scott and I had a getaway planned to Napa so the timing was good.  On a sun-splashed day we got up early, threw open the sunroof and made the 2 1/2 hour trip to Napa.  As we were driving over, I had a memory of a lovely estate off Silverado Trail. It sat high on the hill, with cypress lining the drive.  The flagstone terraces flanked a perfectly placed vanishing edge least that is how I remembered it. I made it my mission to find it.....and we did!

Just a few miles up Silverado Trail, on an eastern hillside, just as I remembered it.......Signorello Estate.

That pool.......

Jacqueline, so much fun, set us up in her 'office' by the pool. She gave us the best start to our Napa Weekend.

Thank you Jacqueline (it was our pleasure)!

Signorello Estate

We had made reservations for a couple of nights at the Andaz Napa where we greeted with the utmost in friendly and professional service. There is no counter for check in at the Andaz, instead we were assigned a staff member for a seated check, via iPad, on the couch with a glass of wine.

Our suite at the Andaz  Napa was wine country luxurious with a sitting room, see through fireplace and a sleek spa style tub and marble shower.  The linens were pure luxury. We had stayed here previously when it was the Avia. In making the switch to Andaz (a Hyatt brand) I would say it has only improved in amenities and service.

We dined at the famed Celadon in Napa by the river. I have been a big fan since Celadon first opened in 1996 and a close friend of mine and Chef/Owner Greg Cole introduced us.  This Michelin recommended gem of a restaurant delivers outstanding 'Global Comfort Food' and Greg's passion for food and wine continues to shine. I have hosted a bridal luncheon, a birthday party and other special dinners at Celadon and they always treat us with the best of care.

Taking an after dinner walk along the riverfront we happened across some live music at Silo's. We were not even close to being the oldest ones in the crowd which was a bonus (we live in a University town of Chico so that tends to be the norm).  It was definitely the perfect night on the town in Napa.

This terrace at the Andaz Napa is the perfect spot for relaxing..... 

Zuzu, one of our favorites for friendly, casual tapas dinner near the river.


New friends around the fire pit~perfect start to our evening!

Though the river is unusually low this year this is a great view of the new Napa Riverfront area. It's a mixed use blend of gourmet restaurants, boutiques and luxury town-home living. I've always been intrigued by mixed use projects such as this, it feels like a European style of living. Another new favorite this trip was a brunch at Grace's Table. They have excellent reviews and our dishes were wonderful with an international flair. The weather was so warm they opened up one wall of the restaurant for patio dining.

Miner Family Winery, one of our favorites.

"You know it's great wine if your smile turns purple!"

Wine Notes from Scott

A few things come together to make for a great tasting experience.  Of course, the wine comes first. There’s just no sense spending time where the wine is not excellent or a style you love.  Big, complex reds?  Citrusy Sauv Blanc?  Chardonnay with mineral or butter or oak?  The other factors that make it for me are setting, and staff friendliness/expertise… oh, and cost.  A friendly and generous host can make for a ton of fun.  A packed room can be a pain, but it can also be a party.  A tasting room with a patio or a view can make for a fantastic, lingering taste experience.  For this trip, our first destination was Signorello, perched on the hillside with a spectacular view (here’s a little vid that shows the beauty:

History, wine and culinary education at it's finest!

 It became our only destination that afternoon because it was a slow day—only two other couples there—our amazing “ambassador”, Jacqueline, hooked us up with a long, casual, poolside tasting.  The wines were fabulous, ranging from crisp Seta, Chards on the mineral side, juicy Cabs, and their amazing, big and complex Padrone.  We walked away with a 2007 Cab for a special future night.  Other tastings:  Miner Family—always interesting blends, along with the usual excellent standards (Stagecoach Cab!).  Tasting here feels like family, and their patio encourages you to take your time.  Our prizes?  An Odyssey and an Oracle—medium and big red blends.  Stags’ Leap: what can we say? Great Cabs, a beautiful, rustic setting, and crowded (it was a 3-day weekend).  There are more tasting rooms popping up in town, now, so we hit a couple neighboring our hotel: pureCRU and John Anthony.  PureCru had some good wines, but John Anthony’s were really good, and we had more fun there with  Rozzy pouring.  Again, with all the great wine in the valley, I’m going back for the fun!  

I was wrangling photos with a funky tech thing (can anyone relate?) so I'm grateful Scott had time for some writing today.  In previous posts I have shared my love for both the Napa and Sonoma Valleyin wine country getaways. 

Do you have a favorite go to spot for a getaway weekend?