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View Full Version : Wine Country from SFO

11-04-2013, 03:08 PM
I am planning our first trip to some wineries...what say you??
Gouge on places to stay and wineries to visit...
Any USEFUL info. is much appreciated!!!

11-04-2013, 03:14 PM
Rent a car and drive...about 90 minutes from SFO to the Napa area. Many places to stay, just depends on your budget. St. Helena is a nice small town with some good restaurants (most dont charge corkage as well, which is nice). I will dig up a couple of favorite wineries and get them to you, but more details are needed, how long do you plan on staying, and what time of year are you going?

11-04-2013, 05:08 PM
We are going the first week of June for 5 days...we are not high end spenders but also not on a budget. 4 "adults" will be traveling for the first time in the area. Thanks for any intel. Sometimes the word-of -mouth locations are better than what you can find 'on the net.'

11-04-2013, 06:26 PM
Also head up to Santa Rosa, great breweries and wineries along the way. Even better if you can get someone else to drive!

11-04-2013, 07:58 PM
If it's your first time to Napa, Beringer and Robert Mondavi and Robert Mondavi in particular give excellent tours of their wineries. Sterling is fun too. It's on top of a mountain, you take an aerial gondola to get to it.

11-07-2013, 06:46 AM
We are going the first week of June for 5 days...we are not high end spenders but also not on a budget. 4 "adults" will be traveling for the first time in the area. Thanks for any intel. Sometimes the word-of -mouth locations are better than what you can find 'on the net.'

Still digging some stuff up on the winery front, but keep in mind that most hotels in the Napa Valley will run at least 150/ night that time of year. If you want to go further away and drive in every day you can save a little, but with the headache of driving 45 minutes each way to get to the wineries.

Some restaurants you may want to try: Farmstead, Market, and French Blue. (all in St. Helena) I have been to 2 of these and would return and looking forward to going to the third. I promise to get back to you on the wineries.

11-11-2013, 06:00 AM
Thx for the info. I will give all a look-see.

11-11-2013, 06:31 AM
Jacuzzi Family Vineyards (

This will be one of the first ones you come to as you travel north towards wine country. Interesting history here. The Jacuzzi family made their first fortune by patenting a wooden aircraft propeller design. Later, after the metal prop made their wooden design obsolete, they made further fortunes in...yes, you guessed it...the hot tub business.

Neat place - very friendly people.

Free Flyer
11-11-2013, 01:36 PM
Napa is pricey and a little snooty in my opinion. Try out the Sonoma side of the valley, specifically the Russian River valley wineries. More free tastings or at least not as costly. Definitely hit up the champagne caves.

As mentioned by someone else, Santa Rosa has some great bed and breakfasts to go to. Also there are some hot air balloon rides over the wine fields that launch out of the Sonoma county airport. Way cool!

11-16-2013, 10:42 PM
Some wineries in the Napa Valley.

1. Beringers, a beautiful historic building with lovely gardens and the wine is very good.

2. Cateau Montelena, also beautiful historic building with lovely scenic grounds. Montelena was the winery that went to France in the 1970s and won for best wine, putting Napa Valley on the map as a wine destination.

3. Robert Mondavi who is one of the first wineries in Napa Valley. Beautiful modern building

4. Castea del al Morosa, built to resemble a real castle, took 14 years to build worth seeing

5. Sterling, riding a cable car up a small mountain to the top allows beautiful views of the valley.

All of the wines from these wineries is very good but each has a different architectural design worth seeing.

For restaurants I forgot to mention the CIA- Culinary Institute of America. Just past St. Helena on HWY 29. Great food and a great building. I have not been there, but my mother in law lives in St. Helena and has been there. A couple others are St. Helena Bistro, Cindy Paulson's and Rutherford Grill.

I have stayed at the Vineyard Country Inn once and it is nice, but I had a substantial discount (MIL works there part time). I think the rates are upwards of $200/night. If you are going to be in the area for 5 days, I would try to branch out and hit the Sonoma Valley as well as the Napa Valley, as someone mentioned good wine and probably less attitude (although I have never encountered any attitude and I go there once every couple of months).

If you have more questions dont hesitate to PM me and I can get answers for you.

11-17-2013, 03:00 AM
I like the caves at Kunde. I agree that Beringer is a good stop. But I prefer Sonoma over Napa overall- so check out Bartholomew Park and Gundlach-Bundschu. Both are just a little bit off the square. But Napa valley has the mud baths and hot springs. And there's a petrified forest too. It's overwhelming, literally hundreds of possibilities. Just have fun!

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