Napa Valley: Beyond the Tasting Rooms (Part 3)

I hope you’ve been enjoying this series on things to do in the Napa Valley besides visiting the ubiquitous winery tasting rooms.

I always like to limit my winery visits to no more than two per day—usually one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Hopefully, this series is giving you some ideas on how to fill in those idle hours between tasting room visits.

Let’s finish the series with one more suggestion…or 10, depending on how you look at it…

  • Dine at a Michelin-starred restaurant.

    There are 10 of them in Napa Valley, including the 3-star French Laundry and The Restaurant at Meadowood.

    Thomas Keller describes his French Laundry in Yountville as “a uniquely American restaurant whose inspiration is in the countryside of France.”

    Don’t try to decide on your entrée in advance; every day is a new day at the French Laundry, as Keller and company serve up a pair of nine-course tasting menus (one devoted exclusively to vegetables) that offer delicious twists and turns with each plate.

    There’s also an extensive (and equally expensive) wine list, or you can bring your own bottle—a maximum of one bottle for each two people in a party—for a corkage fee of $75 per bottle.

    The Restaurant at Meadowood in St. Helena also features multi-course dining extravaganzas, created by Christopher Kostow, along with wine pairings for each course (for an additional cost).

    “What excites us most,” says Kostow, “is the concept of curation: creating menus that speak to each guest’s individual preferences and sense of adventure.”

    Other Michelin-starred restaurants in the valley include Etoile at Domaine Chandon (Yountville), La Toque (Napa), Solbar (Calistoga), Ubuntu (Napa, presently on sabbatical), The Restaurant at Auberge du Soleil (Rutherford), Bouchon (another Thomas Keller enterprise in Yountville), Redd (Yountville) and Terra (St. Helena).

Here are a few links to help you plan your trip…

Posted in Our Wine Travel Log
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