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Help us plan our Napa trip

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We have a group of 6-8 people going up to Napa on Saturday. We are all between 25-30. We are looking for some recs for fun or funky wineries that perhaps offer a unique experience. We would also love a dinner rec for an early (5:00 pm) dinner, maybe $30-40/person for food, plus an atmosphere that can handle us after 6 hours of wine drinking. Any type of cuisine will work.

TIA

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  1. Some of the wineries we're thinking of are:
    Castello Di Amorosa
    Darioush
    Sterling
    Beringer
    Schramsberg
    Chateau Montelena
    Clos du Val
    Domaine Carneros
    Viansa

    For dinner we're thinking of Tra Vigne. Any Thoughts?

    3 Replies
    1. re: Fussy Foodie

      Did you see the article on this webpage.. called the "Other Napa," under the Travel section, I thought they had some good insights. Putting French Laundry in the "overrated" section upset some people however.

      I like Tra Vigne, but never went when Chiarello was there, so nothing to compare with, but I love the wine braised short ribs, and also the fried calimari. Nice atmosphere, down to earth.

      1. re: Fussy Foodie

        All the wineries you mention are relatively large and attract lots of tourists. Some of them are extremely crowded and busy. You also should include some of the excellent smaller wineries that are more private and give you more personal attention. Some examples: Joseph Phelps, Jarvis, Caymus, Burgess, Storybook Mountain, Far Niente, Duckhorn, Quintessa. Most require an appointment, so you have to call in advance. Some charge for tours/tastings (Jarvis is pretty expensive but worth it)--but just about all the places you mention also charge. There are many others. You can pick up magazines and maps that list the wineries and their visitor policies at almost any winery in Napa. Tra Vigna is also a very busy place. I prefer some of the really good smaller restaurants--Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen, Redd (Yountville), and Terra are good.

        1. re: stebro

          Some of the more "festive" restaurants we visited were Brix and Bouchon. A 5:00 table should not be too difficult. Also, Don Giovanni seems to be pretty lively. 6 "slightly inebriated" diners should fit right in.