The Wine Enthusiast Guide to Napa City
Napa City isn't all wine. Here's the guide to that'll have you imbibing and noshing from morning 'til late night.
Start the day meandering around the Oxbow Public Market, a playground for wine and food aficionados, with a grab bag of artisan purveyors from the Model Bakery and Kara’s Cupcakes to Ritual Coffee Roasters and Tillerman Tea. Amply fortified, head to Domaine Carneros for a rarefied “Art of Sparkling Wine” tour (11 am; $30) or sequester yourself at a table with caviar and cheese alongside wine poured by the glass.
Settle in for lunch at The Pear Southern Bistro for a Napa spin on New Orleans-style soul food like barbecue chicken salad, fried oyster po’boys and strawberry shortcake, then walk a few blocks to the John Anthony Vineyards Tasting Lounge for a relaxed private tasting of single-vineyard Sauvignon Blancs and Cabernets paired with Beehive Cheese Company cheeses ($50). Tours of their nearby vineyards can also be arranged ($125). At the elegant Vintner’s Collective, sample a who’s who of coveted wines, from Ancien Wines and Clark-Claudon Vineyards to Melka, Roy Estate and Showket Vineyards.
Start your evening at Carpe Diem Wine Bar for Happy Hour between 4 pm and 6 pm and order the red, white, bubbles or specialty beer of the week and some small bites before heading to dinner at Oenotri Restaurant, the Valley’s most elevated take on Southern Italian food and wine. Or combine passions, and taste rare wines at Bounty Hunter Wine Bar & Smokin’ BBQ, where you can order wines by the glass, bottle or flight, rare spirits by the glass and beer can chicken-style barbecue. Serving daily until 10 pm, weekends until midnight.
After a full day of indulgence, do what the locals do and end the night at Fagiani’s Bar at The Thomas, open until 1 am Friday and Saturday, for Napa’s most inspired seasonal cocktails. The order: Chamomile Sazerac (rye, brandy, Peychaud’s bitters, absinthe and chamomile syrup). Take your drink to the rooftop where you can gaze upon your conquered gastro domain.