With the craziness of the holidays and travel behind me, I can finally sit down, enjoy a cup of tea (even if it’s gone cold), and reminisce about the time my husband Rick surprised me with a fun weekend getaway to Napa. He must have known I needed a little break between traveling for work, heading to NY for a friends wedding, managing our house and a wild 1 1/2 year old! We have never been to Napa but if you watch my stories, you know I love me some wine! LOL So you can imagine my excitement when it was time to head to wine country and to be able to spend some quality one-on-one time with Rick.
So we packed our bags and headed to the beautiful Union Station in LA. You see, this was no typical weekend getaway, we were taking the train! How fun is that! I’m so used to driving or flying whenever we travel, but the train, this was fun to try out itself! Our journey started by taking a quick bus ride to Bakersfield and then jumped on the Amtrak San Joaquins line. What I loved most about the train was that there was more space than a plane and we were both able to relax together while also enjoying the benefits of WiFi so we could catch up on work, watch movies and of course share our adventure on Instagram. 🙂
When we arrived in Napa, we headed straight to our boutique hotel, The Napa River Inn. We stayed in the Historic Deluxe room which had some of my favorite features like a king size canopy bed, claw tub, separate walk-in shower and a relaxing sitting area by the fireplace. I mean how cozy is that! This was such a darling hotel, oh and we had complimentary fresh pastries, coffee, and juice delivered to our room each morning. We really could have stayed in our room the entire weekend, but we wanted to explore of course! On Friday night we took a quick stroll down to Bounty Hunter Wine Bar & Smokin’ BBQ for dinner. The wine, atmosphere and food were amazing!
After a day of traveling, eating, and drinking we were excited to head back to our room and…..SLEEP, we are tired parents after all! haha The next morning we slept in, ate our fresh delivered pastries, then took a walk to Grace’s Table for breakfast. Did I mention just about everything is walking distance. We didn’t need to rent a car, everything we needed and wanted was walkable, and if we didn’t want to walk the Inn had a car to drive us. It was great!
After breakfast we decided to head to a winery and along the way spotted some pretty cool art pieces. Come to find out, it’s called the Napa ArtWalk which is a biennial rotating exhibition of public installation art. So glad we stumbled on this because there were some really beautiful sculptures, 8 in total. Here are a few of my faves:
We made our way to JaM Cellars for a couple glasses of wine and to relax and I really liked the vibe, it was an eclectic music driven wine bar. We sat and talked, people watched through the windows and listened to music. It was the perfect place to unwind with a glass of their Sugar Sweet White (I love sweet wines!)
After our relaxing wine break we set out to explore the Oxbow Public Market and grab some food. It was another beautiful quick walk and when we got to the market I was so excited because I love places like this, think Seattle Public Market or San Diego’s Public Market at Liberty Station, just a really cool one stop shop. They had everything from an Oyster bar, cupcakes, burgers, fresh fruits/veggies, coffee, ice cream, WINE and tons of vendors. We picked up a few books for Josie and some decadent chocolates for my mom as a thank you gift for watching Josie for us. We also grabbed a light lunch and enjoyed checking out all the amazing merchants.
After the market we were heading back to our hotel, but decided to make one more stop, because why not, we were on vacay after all! We stopped at St. Clair Brown Winery & Brewery for a glass of wine. This was such a charming spot. We visited their tasting room, which is right across the street from their winery and brewery. It’s not your average tasting room either, it was a greenhouse surrounded by a 4,500 square foot culinary garden. We had the best time and some seriously delicious wine!
Back at our room we just wanted to relax before heading out for the night. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to soak in their claw foot tub. Relaxing indeed!
After getting ready we headed out for dinner at the CIA at Copia. This had to be my favorite meal while in Napa, I mean everything we had eaten so far was amazing, but this was very romantic and the food was top notch. They have a simple, seasonally inspired menu. I started off with the Garden Salad that had frisee, Honeycrisp apple, pickled shallots, goat cheese, pecans, and Champagne vinaigrette and then had the Kurobota Pork Chop which had a 24-hour brine, sweet potato romesco, and apple salad. If you visit here and this is on their menu, get it!! I still think about that meal!! Not to mention Rick’s Julia Child inspired meal of Beef Bourgignon and French frisee salad with poached egg and bacon. Mmmmm take us back just for this meal alone!!
After an amazing dinner we took a nice walk along the water and enjoyed the beautiful fresh air, lights and overall ambiance of this beautiful town.
The next morning we slept in, yet again, then headed down to the Napa General Store for breakfast. This was super convenient because it’s connected to the hotel, so it’s a quick 2 minute walk, if that! We had breakfast, a glass of champagne to end our trip, and picked up a few more souvenirs from the connected store. It was the best way to end our perfect weekend getaway.
Then it was time to head back to the train station and make our way home to our little bebe. Visiting Napa exceeded all of my expectations and being able to spend time with my husband was the best. Until next time Napa, because there will definitely be a next time!! Cheers!
If you’re thinking about heading up to Napa, you should definitely consider taking the Amtrak San Joaquins line. It’s such a nice way to travel and not have to worry about driving or spending too much on a plane ticket (and spending more on food and wine instead 😉