The wait is finally over. After several years of delays and much anticipation, the Four Seasons Resort & Residences Napa Valley has opened in Calistoga.
Set at the northern end of the Silverado Trail and across from Auberge’s Solage, this opening caps off a busy year for Napa Valley’s most casual, underrated town.
In 2021, several other Calistoga hotels and resorts unveiled major renovations (including Dr. Wilkinson’s Backyard Resort & Mineral Springs, the Calistoga Motor Lodge & Spa, and Solage Resort & Spa), and each came with a fresh new dining concept. Add the Four Seasons to the mix and Calistoga is now poised to be Wine Country’s hottest destination in 2022.
The Digs at Four Seasons Napa Valley
(Courtesy of the Four Seasons Resort & Residences Napa Valley)
Fully committed to the idea of being enveloped by Wine Country, Calistoga's Four Seasons has vineyard views from literally every point, even the fitness center. Barn silhouettes and neutral-colored materials of stone, wood, and metal throughout pay tribute to Napa Valley’s history, yet the Four Season’s standard of luxury never waivers.
The resort has a restaurant, on-site winery, spa, two heated pools with cabanas (one for adults only) and extra-large jacuzzis that could easily fit a dozen people. There’s a bocce court and a truly unique-to-Napa Valley offering for families: daily, complimentary child care and kids programming for children ages five to twelve. Yes, this means you can go wine tasting without them.
All accommodations have a fireplace, wine fridge, and private deck or patio, generally accompanied by some sort of vineyard view. The rooms at the back of the property have the best scenery: an unobstructed view of a hillside vineyard from which you might catch the vineyard workers in action if you're there during the week.
The classic farmhouse design with an understated elegance is split between two levels. The first floor rooms were designed to mimic a wine cave; dark with a white bathroom and perfect for people who live by blackout curtains. The top floor rooms are bright and white with a dark bathroom plus vaulted ceilings so they feel more spacious.
Custom-made live edge headboards adorn the beds and each room cheekily has a copy of The Grapes of Wrath displayed open and on the wall. The bathrooms are the true statement piece, featuring a standalone soaking tub that’s backed by honeycomb tiling. Next to the tub is a wood stump table for your wine glass, sourced right from the Petrified Forest in Calistoga.
For those needing more space, the resort also has multi-bedroom villas on the property. One even has its own pool.
Food & Drink at Four Seasons Napa Valley
Truss Restaurant + Bar is the center of all things food and drink at the Four Seasons in Calistoga. Perched above the rest of the resort, there’s an expansive terrace with fire pits, lounge seating, and great views, especially at sunset. Beyond floor-to-ceiling glass walls that can open up to the outside, Truss is divided into two parts: the living room—a casual space with a bar for breakfast, lunch, and casual dinner—and the formal dining room. The latter is quite intimate with only a glass wall separating diners from the action in the kitchen. There’s even a pair of chef’s tables within the kitchen, which is about as exclusive as it gets.
Unfortunately, only the living room of Truss is currently open, as the restaurant has faced some growing pains. In addition to battling Covid-era staffing shortages, Truss' opening chef, Erik Anderson (formerly of the two-Michelin-starred Coi), parted ways just a few weeks after its opening, reportedly to start his own venture.
Chef Shaun Acosta, a longtime Four Seasons veteran, has stepped temporarily into his place, but the dining room is unlikely to open until they find a permanent replacement. For now, resort guests and the general public can visit the living room or dine on the outdoor terrace.
For lunch or dinner, there’s a great wine list and casual cocktails, small plates, and mains like a smash burger, pizza, or a Snake River Farms strip loin. My favorite dish at Truss was the duck ham, essentially duck carpaccio that’s at once sweet and a little spicy thanks to a unique combo of espelette pepper and orange confiture. I was pleasantly surprised by how addicting I found the green goddess whipped tofu dip that accompanied the crudités, and the pommes puree was some of the best “mashed potatoes” I’ve ever had. At $150, the caviar course is a splurge, but still one of the best caviar offerings I’ve seen (especially from a presentation perspective), paired with fluffy, biscuit-like blinis, eggs that look like pearls, creme fraîche, and pickled red onion.
Just outside of Truss is an outdoor demonstration kitchen with an Argentinian wood-fire grill. Here, guests can participate in cooking, wine, and cocktail-making classes.
The Four Seasons has one additional dining option, an Oaxacan-themed poolside bar called Campo that serves Mexican cocktails, tacos, and light, refreshing fare like a zesty mango jicama salad.
The Winery at Four Seasons Napa Valley
One of the most unique features of this resort is that there is a winery right on site from one of Napa Valley’s most renowned consulting winemakers, Thomas Rivers Brown, who has called Calistoga home for over 20 years.
Named Elusa Winery in tribute to Calistoga’s roots as a village for the Wappo tribe, Elusa essentially means “to care for” and is a term the tribe uses to describe things they have made or grown themselves, like baskets and arrowheads. The Elusa team felt that the name also reflected their commitment to caring for the land they grow the grapes on—and they even took care to get the blessing of local Wappo representatives before using it.
There was already a small vineyard planted here before resort construction began, so Brown has actually been making wines for Elusa for the past decade. This means that visitors to the tasting room—it’s open to the public by appointment, as it’s technically a separate entity from the Four Seasons—have the chance to taste wines that already date back 10 vintages and have some great age on them.
Elusa sources exclusively from Calistoga vineyards, including the organically farmed one on the property, making this a true hometown brand. Unsurprisingly, cabernet sauvignon and other Bordeaux varieties are their specialties, and they live up to the hype that comes with sharing space with a five-star resort. The Complete Elusa Experience ($200) takes you on a tour of the vineyard and winery and includes an intimate tasting in the library, which looks right into the barrel room, with cheese pairings.
R&R at Four Seasons Napa Valley
(Courtesy of the Four Seasons Resort & Residences Napa Valley)
A day of pampering at Spa Talisa is a must. Choose from several gorgeous spaces to lose track of all your worries. Co-ed areas feature swinging daybeds, a whirlpool with vineyard views, and a mud area for a DIY, skin-soothing mud treatment (a nod to Calistoga’s mud bath history).
The designated locker rooms have massive steam rooms and tranquil gardens with loungers and misters for hot summer days. For treatments, choose from a variety of massages, facials, and body treatments that’ll help your body detox the copious amounts of wine and food you’re bound to ingest on your Napa Valley getaway.
// Four Seasons Resort and Residences Napa Valley, 400 Silverado Trail (Calistoga), fourseasons.com