The Insider’s Guide to Napa
A local shares what to do, eat, and, of course, drink
The Napa getaway has become a cliché of pricey hotels and marked-up bottles. But we were charmed by how accessible this NoCal spot can be when we read wine writer and Napa native Heather John Fogarty’s guide on the travel site The Reed. Here’s your itinerary, from tasting olive oil to taking an outdoor shower.
How to Get There: FLY
Forget time-consuming driving or the train, and skip the nerve-jangling experience of LAX and SFO. Instead take a nonstop Alaska Air flight from Burbank to Santa Rosa.
Where to stay: YOUNTVILLE
The Bardessono, a LEED-certified small hotel in Yountville, is the modern antidote to the bed-and-breakfast. Plus, its spa suites come with outdoor showers!
Bardessono, 6526 Yount St., Yountville; 707-204-6000 or bardessono.com
What to Taste (Part 1): OLIVE OIL
Visit Napa Valley Olive Oil, a family-run olive-oil-bottling company, which oozes charm and operates out of an old barn. Stop by for tastings of more than 50 international oils (including the family’s own) as well as flavored vinegars.
Napa Valley Olive Oil, 1331 First St., Napa; 707-265-6866 or nvoliveoil.com
What to Eat (Part One): CHARCUTERIE
Assemble a spread of salumi, fresh bread and pâté or order a veggie-and-sliced-meats sandwich at the Fatted Calf to go with a bottle of wine and eat in a winery or park; take home the café’s cookbook, In the Charcuterie.
Fatted Calf Charcuterie, 644 C First St., Napa; 707-256-3684 or fattedcalf.com
What to Eat (Part Two): OYSTERS
Hit Hog Island Oyster Co. and order a dozen of its sustainably-raised Tomales Bay oysters--the buttery little Kumamotos are a summertime favorite. Dunk them in the rice-vinegar-and-lime concoction known as Hog Wash.
Hog Island Oyster Co., Oxbow Public Market, 610 First St., Napa; 707-251-8113 or hogislandoysters.com