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Visiting Napa Valley. Need tips

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killswitch:
Have a trip to the Napa Valley planned this weekend. I was hoping anyone here have any tip or advice on beautiful locations in and around Napa Valley that's worth exploring. I am looking to shoot some landscapes, and currently researching some options. It is going to be a day trip so would like to touch some must see places before heading back home.

Appreciate your help.

neuroanatomist:
Keep your eyes open and be prepared to pull the car to the side of the road - there are lots of scenic vistas from there. 

Domaine Carneros (at the bottom of the valley) is picturesque, worth a stop if you're coming up from the south, you'll pass by it going to Napa from SF.

A good plan is usually to drive north through Napa Valley (along the 29), then back south along the Silverado Trail.  Alternatively, come back south on the 29 and head over the Oakville Grade to Sonoma.

In St. Helena, I highly recommend V. Sattui - excellent wine, they only sell at the winery and direct mail, but the grounds are nice, great deli so a good lunch stop.  Cuvaison and Stag's Leap on the Silverado Trail.

If you get to Sonoma, Chateau St. Jean is pretty (but I don't care for their wines - go next door to Kenwood to taste). 

Have fun!

robbymack:
Ahh my backyard. Honestly you can't go wrong anywhere in the valley. Hopefully the weather holds up today as well as it did yesterday, I haven't been in a few weeks, but if the grape leaves have all not fallen  off you're in for a treat. There is probably a better chance for that on the north end of the valley (st Helena and further up) than on the south.  As neuro stated domaine carneros is pretty, but if the weather is really clear (no marine layer) then skip that and try artesa instead (maybe 3 mins from domaine carneros)  the wine is S___, but from their balcony on a clear day you can see all the way to the golden gate. Then I'd hop over to Nicholson ranch, their wine is better than the two above plus Charles the tasting room manager is a riot. If they'll let you walk around the grounds there is a quaint little chapel up on the hill built by the owners father a long time ago and a huge lion statue used in the sf opera. From there it will probably be getting close to lunchtime. Then there are a couple of choices, if your going to Sonoma, Sonoma town square is very picturesque and most of the restaurants on the square are good and reasonably priced. If your headed up the napa valley then for cheap lunch I'd recommend stopping at oxbow market, lots of choices there including gotts (formerly taylors refresher) or head up to oakville grocery for good sandwiches. For the higher end of lunch head to yountville.  Personally I love buchon, Bottega, or ad hoc (they only offer lunch take out).  From there the world is your oyster...I'd recommend the following for wine tasting, caymus, hall, Robert Craig, patz and hall, schramsberg, Joseph phelps, honig, duckhorn, pine ridge, chimney rock, page. For sight seeing more so than wine drinking, Coppola, mondavi, beringer, sterling.  I am sure I can come up with a lot more.  Let me know what kind of vino you're in to and I could provide some more specific recommendations.

distant.star:

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Don't drink & drive.

This is always a maximum enforcement weekend!

ChilledXpress:
Great wine and awesome photography gallery... Local photographers and a still large Ansel Adams collection.

Mumm Napa Valley winery includes one of the world’s leading galleries of photographic art. Though former owners removed part of the famed Ansel Adams collection, benefactors have replaced them, and temporary exhibits provide an excuse to visit often. 8445 Silverado Trail, Rutherford. 800-686-6272.


Like Mumm, the Turnbull winery features a gallery featuring of famous black and white photography. The current exhibit features the work of Ansel Adams. The exhibit changes every six months. It is in the reserve room of the winery, so requires appointments. 8210 Saint Helena Hwy., Oakville. (707) 963-5839

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