If your mom (or you, for that matter) would enjoy a Mother's Day involving wine, head up to Napa Valley. Here's my list of recommendations for all of you "spontaneous" planners.
Duckhorn is pulling out all the stops for mothers everywhere (a day early) with their Saturday Spring Celebration. Bustle from station to station and through the gardens, tasting small bites and sipping on different wines.
If you've ever wanted a behind-the-scenes experience in Napa, the Rutherford Passport Weekend is your golden ticket. This weekend, from May 7th to 8th, grab yourself a Passport and immerse yourself in country sunshine–you'll get exclusive access and discounts to special pourings, barrel and tank tastings, paired food and wine, and in-depth Q-and-As with the master winemakers in the Rutherford Appellation Winery family. Best of all, proceeds from Passport sales benefit local Napa Valley charities!
These days you can bring your pup just about anywhere, and Napa is no exception. There are more than 90 dog-friendly wineries in the valley, with bowls of water and treats next to many a tasting room counter. Here's a list of some of my favorites, based on their attitude towards pups, overall experience and quality of wine.
Now that tax season is officially over, it's time to cut loose–and we're here to help you with that. Head up to Napa's historic Chateau Montelena on June 25th for Franc & Blanc, a summer vineyard party that's all about the glory of their red and white wines.
Here's where we come in: use the code 7X7UPGRADE to upgrade to VIP status for free, which is valid until May 15 while ticket supplies last. What do you get with your new platinum status? Montelena will get you round-trip transportation from San Francisco up to the winery itself, access to their luxurious VIP lounge, on-site parking, and complimentary wine tastings.
If you’re waking up to go wine tasting, odds are pretty good that you either need a solid brunch to soak up yesterday’s fun or something hearty to prepare you for a long day of wines and vines. Here are my picks for the seven best brunch spots in Napa Valley, broken down by specialty and experience:
Most people think of wine, food, vines and highway 29 when they think of Napa Valley, but there are plenty of other activities, like hiking, that won’t lead to a hangover or require much time in the car. The Vaca and Mayacama mountain ranges offer beautiful views, great hikes (although most of Napa is private land) and an opportunity to work off all that food and wine or appease your non-drinking companions. Here are 4 great hikes on either side of the valley and some resources to help you find hikes more suitable to your schedule, taste, or pace.
Coombsville has long been known as one of the best and most diverse grape growing regions in Napa Valley by winemakers and insiders, and it’s about to become the next hotspot for visitors in the know. The closest point in Napa Valley to San Francisco (bordering downtown Napa and only 14 miles from the bay), Coombsville is made up of vine-covered hills called “rolling benchlands," and is on the cusp of officially being deemed its own AVA (American Viticultural Area).
Tickets for Auction Napa Valley, the Valley’s biggest fundraiser and party of the year, go on sale tomorrow, March 31st at 8am and will likely sell out within the hour. The auction, which attracts the who's who of the wine industry as well as sprinklings of Hollywood celebs and Silicon Valley moguls, is a four-day wine bidding and partying extravaganza that takes place June 2-5 this year.