E and I headed West to the old stomping grounds to enjoy a last weekend away as a family of two. I often miss Northern California and the SWA direct flight into Oakland makes the visit quite easy. We headed out Thursday night and made the most of our cozy rainy weekend at the wonderful Carneros (Could not have more wonderful things to say about this place!)
Friday: We started our day off at our favorite breakfast spot, Fremont Diner, for a quick bite before attempting a hike. The rain would not stop coming down, but we continued our drive to Sugarloaf Ridge State Park to hike Bald Mountain. The morning was moody and dark, but so very cozy. We probably made it a mile in before feeling a little too damp and turned around. The crummy weather allowed for us to make a special pit stop for E in Santa Rosa to visit Russian River Brewery and sip on his hard-to-find beer. Next up on our driving tour was back down to Sonoma to visit Ram's Gate Winery for some wine tasting and a walk to the pond when the clouds briefly parted. Before we knew it, we were far past our lunch time and headed back to the resort to try Boon Fly Cafe, take a tub on the patio and sit by our fire pit before getting ready for dinner. We ventured to Yountville for dinner at Thomas Keller's Ad Hoc (a must go if you're in the area!) Perfect way to end our first day :)
Saturday: Back to Boon Fly Cafe we went, for breakfast this time, to try their famous donuts. (What should really be famous is their breakfast za! YUM). While in wine country we figured we should go tasting/exploring so we did... first up V. Sattui. They have a cute market where you can get some of the most delicious-looking goods for a picnic (next time!) and great areas around the property where you can camp out and enjoy. We weren't able to do this due to weather, so we will be back - it was really pretty. Afterwards we headed down the road to Inglenook. This is a stunning old estate, rich with history. They have the cutest little bistro where we camped out to sip tea and escape the downpour. We wandered the building and the grounds before we called it time for lunch. We headed back down to Napa to check out Oxbow Public Market and grab a seat at the bar of one of or favorites Hog Island Oyster Co. We enjoyed the insane clam chowder before rushing back to Carneros for my hour in spa heaven. When I emerged, completely refreshed, the rain had stopped and we had a beautiful evening wandering Carneros grounds and enjoying our last night. When night fell we headed up to Napa for bowling and dinner. A wonderfully quick trip that we will not soon forget!