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Wine Country

Three Recently Revamped Wine Country Spaces to Check Out Now

Three Recently Revamped Wine Country Spaces to Check Out Now

Originally published on CaliforniaHomeDesign.com

With summer here, it’s time to get out and explore. Head to Wine Country and dig into these new and improved spots.

Oakville Grocery Revival
Napa Valley’s original hot-spot for gourmet provisions just got a makeover from the foundation up, ensuring that this historic (ca. 1881!) general store continues to sate the epicure’s soul for another century.

Tour Wine Country's Newest Restaurant, Campo Fina, Opening Today

Tour Wine Country's Newest Restaurant, Campo Fina, Opening Today

Originally published on CaliforniaHomeDesign.com

Looking for Wine Country’s newest hot spot? Ari and Dawnelise Rosen return to basics with their new eatery Campo Fina, which opens today, June 18. The casual sister to the wildly popular Scopa Restaurant, Campo Fina sits right around the corner on Healdsburg Plaza. Defined by wood and masonry interiors, the space mirrors the timeless Italian flavors on their small plates menu.

Four New Napa Pizza Spots and Our Wine Pairings

Napa Becomes a Pizza Inferno

The wood-fired pizza trend is sending Wine Country up in smoke. This summer, there are no less than four (four!) new restaurants in Northern California centered around the great and glorious wood-fired oven pizza pie. What on Earth did we eat last year? Here are the hot (literally—those ovens are really hot) new restaurants themselves along with our wine-pairing recommendations.

Summer Music Festivals and Concerts in Wine Country

Best Wine Country Music Festivals and Winery Concerts

Like pairing music and wine? Here's your guide to this year's summer wine country music festivals, winery concerts, and star-studded shows:

Gay Wine Weekend Kicks off June 15th in Sonoma

Gay Wine Weekend Kicks off June 15th in Sonoma

Gay Wine Weekend is three days of LBGT events in one of the most famous luxury wine destinations in the world–NorCal's magnificent Sonoma Valley.  Spend Father's Day Weekend, June 15 - 17th, indulging in world class wine and culinary delights, music and dancing in a private estate vineyard, VIP receptions, wine tasting excursions, international winemaker dinners, champagne brunch & a wine auction.

There Is No French Food at Napa's Locally Focused French Blue

There Is No French Food at Napa's Locally Focused French Blue

There may be Francophiles speaking French while holding French poodles named Frenchie. There may even be French oak tables and men sporting French cuffs lounging in French wicker, but there is no French food at French Blue. Nor is there any French wine. At legendary Wine Country architect Howard Backen’s new restaurant, French Blue (which, in the design world, is actually a shade of blue — the very shade of the front doors that hung on the original Vanderbilt building) in the heart of Napa Valley, the focus is local, local, local. Two hundred miles around the town of St. Helena to be exact. Or, as Beverage Director Adam La Cagnina puts it, “from Monterey to Mendocino.”

Go Inside Napa Valley's New Gathering Place, French Blue

 Go Inside Napa Valley's New Gathering Place, French Blue

Originally published by CaliforniaHomeDesign.com

Howard Backen, of the St. Helena-based Backen, Gillam & Kroeger Architects, is known for crafting properties with soaring ceilings, elegant architectural details and light-filled spaces. But after designing more than 35 wineries, 18 restaurants, and a plethora of upscale homes, resorts and retail locations for the likes of Restoration Hardware and Williams Sonoma Home, Howard, his wife and interior designer Lori, together with vintner Leslie Rudd (also of nearby Press) and an all-star ensemble of Wine Country hospitality veterans, embraced the opportunity to create a place of their own.

A Beer Garden Opens in the Heart of Wine Country

A Beer Garden Opens in the Heart of Wine Country

It was a long coffee-less winter for the residents of Oakville. The Oakville Grocery, a beloved resting place for commuters, cyclists and tourists alike (and the only place to get a sandwich between St. Helena and Yountville) has been closed for months, undergoing extensive reconstructive surgery. This weekend, just in time for Memorial Day, the sign out front once again said “Open.”

Best BBQ in Napa Valley

Best BBQ in Napa Valley

Whether you prefer a chilled wine or jammy Zinfandel (or cold beer) with your BBQ, the pairing won’t matter much if the food ain't smoking good. With that in mind, here are the best BBQ spots in Napa Valley.

Horseback Riding High Above Napa Valley

Horseback Riding High Above Napa Valley

Fifteen hundred feet above Napa Valley on a rocky, rolling patch of land planted here and there with rows of tidy vines is the West Coast’s largest Olympic equestrian training ground. Or at least it used to be. The 3,800, mostly wild, acres on Mt. George, which the team called home for 20 years, was purchased by Japanese gaming mogul Kenzo Tsujimoto in 1990 at which time he sent the Olympians packing and started taking soil samples. (The polo field for example, turned out to be an ideal place for a certain clone of Sauvignon Blanc.)

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