Day 13 in Napa
Day 13 in Napa was a day filled with fun, great company, and of course, outstanding wines. As we woke up to the cool morning air and the marine layer gently covering the valley, we knew it was going to be another memorable day in this beautiful wine region. To kickstart the day, we indulged in a leisurely breakfast accompanied by a steaming a cup of ‘joe’. And, as luck would have it, Sherry was wearing a shirt that proudly proclaimed her love for Champagne, prompting us to open a bottle from The Vineyard House Winery. The crisp bubbles of the Champagne set the tone for the day ahead.
Our first tasting of the day was at the renowned Caymus winery, scheduled for 12:30. We were joined by Helen and Mike Manuel the owner of Outriggers in NSB, adding even more NSB folks to enjoy our adventure. Upon arriving at Caymus, we were in awe by the landscaping and beauty of the facility. The lush surroundings and the idyllic weather was awesome and allowed us to relax and savor the time at the winery. Our charismatic host, Andrew, guided us through the tasting, beginning with their rose. We then embarked on a journey through the exquisite selection, including the Mer Soliel Pinot Noir, Caymus Red Zin, Caymus Napa Cab, and the grand finale of the Special Select. Each glass was damn good, accompanied by engaging conversations and laughter. Andrew was awesome and brought a sense of humor to the tasting.
Time flew quickly, and before we knew it, it was time for our next tasting at Silver Oak. With just a short 10-minute ride, we made our way to the winery, eager to experience more of Napa's finest offerings. As we arrived at Silver Oak, we were warmly greeted by Tom, a familiar face from our previous visits.
In fact, we have a cherished picture of Tom pouring wine for us during our vineyard tour displayed in each restaurant we own. The nostalgia of our previous visits was something I reflected on as we stepped into the winery seeing the updates since our last visit. Our tasting journey at Silver Oak commenced with the refreshing Twomey Sauvignon Blanc, a perfect introduction to Silver Oak as we tasted the wine while eating Sauvignon Blanc Grapes in the vineyard.
Tom immersed us in the winery's history, taking us on a tour of the barrel room and the fermentation tanks, revealing the intricate process behind crafting their exceptional wines. Finally, we gathered around a tasting table, where we were treated to a selection of Silver Oak's current vintages, including the Alexander Valley and Napa Cabs, as well as the timeless ‘Timeless’. The pinnacle of our tasting was the 2012 Silver Oak Alexander Valley, which garnered unanimous praise as the best vintage. Unable to resist, we purchased a bottle, saving it for a special occasion….yeah right….a late lunch at Gott's.
Gott's, a roadside burger joint was our next stop, and it did not disappoint. Doug, Brenda, Jason, Sherry, Mike and Helen all had the pleasure of dining there for the first time, and the experience was perfect. The burgers and garlic fries paired so well with the 2012 Silver Oak!
After leaving Gott’s someone decided it would be a good idea to drive the van over the railroad tracks, onto private property in order to get a picture in front of the infamous 'Welcome to Napa Sign'. I guess enough Caymus and Silver Oak will do that, and I was the driver who was easily influenced.
As the day drew to a close, we returned to the villa, enjoyed the fireplace gummies, cocktails and wine. With glasses in hand, we continued our “exploration” of Napa's diverse and exquisite offerings. Day 13 in Napa was another remarkable experience, filled with the tastings at two iconic wineries and the company of good friends.
Until the next chapter of our journey unfolds, we raise our glasses to the icons of Napa, where every sip tells a story and every day is a celebration of life's pleasures.