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Where to pick up our picnic food in Napa (heading up from SF to Calistoga)

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We'll be getting an early start on a Saturday morning, driving up to Calistoga and heading out on bicycles to go on a picnic.

Where to pick up tasty items?
Up to 2 or 3 stops acceptable.

Open to any suggestions, though it seems we'll want:
-- sandwiches or bread/cheese/salami/etc
-- tasty salads of some sort
-- dessert
-- drinkables

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  1. Oakville Grocery
    Dean and Deluca
    Sunshine Market
    Vallarta Market

    8 Replies
    1. re: wolfe

      BTW, Oakville Grocery and Dean & Deluca are owned by the same guy so much of the food offerings are remarkably the same.

      Oakville Grocery
      124 Matheson St, Healdsburg, CA 95448

      1. re: CarrieWas218

        Are they the same as Dean and Deluca in SoHo NYC?

        If so I'd prefer something more unique and local in feel.

        1. re: pauliface

          They *were* the same - Leslie Rudd bought the entire franchise years ago and neither Georgio (DeLuca) nor Joel (Dean) have been involved since 1995.

          You want a local feel? Go to Rainbow Grocery in St. Helena.

          Rainbow Grocery
          1745 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA 94103

          1. re: CarrieWas218

            Carrie- I think you mean Sunshine in St Helena, not Rainbow? Unless you mean Rainbow in SF as they start out?

            1. re: souvenir

              Yes, thank you, Souvenir. Similar nouns and all that...

              1. re: CarrieWas218

                Exactly. I also have this memory that their logo is (was?) a sun with a rainbow.

                1. re: souvenir

                  I think you are right - and while I said similar nouns, it is also similar platitudes...

      2. re: wolfe

        Along with being arranged south to north those places are all on the same road with no detours, zero, none or in the case of Vallarta, nada.

      3. v. sattui

        or maybe sonoma cheese factory

        1. I second the suggestion for Sunshine Market,

          I can't remember buying prepared salads there, perhaps others can comment on this.

          Their sandwiches and dessert selection are great!

          Depending on what all you want and whether you want to make a second stop, the Model Bakery a few blocks away is also worth a stop,

          Model Bakery
          1357 Main St St, Helena, CA

          1. Stop in Napa at the Oxbow Public Market for one-stop shopping at The Oxbow Cheese Merchant, Model Bakery, and Fatted Calf. You can browse the market for your other items.

            ETA: And unlike the Ferry Building or Berkeley Bowl on Saturday morning, so easy to park.

            Oxbow Public Market
            610 First Street, Napa, CA 94559

            Fatted Calf
            644-C First Street, Napa, CA 94559

            Model Bakery
            610 First Street, Napa, CA 94559

            The Oxbow Cheese Merchant
            610 First Street, Napa, CA 94559

            1 Reply
            1. re: Melanie Wong

              Second on Fatted Calf.

              Parking is easy at Berkeley Bowl West, which is just a couple of minutes off the freeway.

              Between having to park a few blocks away and dealing with the crowds, the Ferry Plaza market can take quite a while.

              Fatted Calf
              644-C First Street, Napa, CA 94559

              Berkeley Bowl West
              920 Heinz Ave, Berkeley, CA

            2. No one has mentioned that, if you're going over the bay bridge, stopping at the Ferry Building is a good one-stop shop. It's not *in* napa or calistoga, but it is *on the way*. Another good choice is Berkeley Bowl West, which is very close to the freeway and is a lot of fun - like an improved whole foods.

              1. We have picked up olives, cheeses, sandwiches and drinks at V Sattui winery which has a great marketplace..
                It's in St. Helena..
                I also crave an Ahi Burger at Taylor's Refresher/Gott's too..


                1. You can pick up sandwiches and pastries at Bouchon Bakery. If you stop in Yountville, you can also get food at Michael Chiarello's Napa Style.

                  Bouchon Bakery
                  6528 Washington St, Yountville, CA 94599

                  1. Hi Folks!

                    Thanks for all this great info.
                    Wolfe, you've really caught the spirit of my request by picking place that are on the way and in Napa (though I'm still suspicious of Dean & Deluca!).

                    Vulber, the Sonoma Cheese factory is too far off our route. But thanks for the tip on V. Sattui -- looks like in addition to being a winery, there is also a market?

                    Souvenir, thanks for the Model Bakery tip, it looks lovely and is also on our route.

                    Melanie, your Oxbow Market recommendation sounds like the big winner though. Appears to be one location with several stores that I'm looking for ( cheese , a bakery , some fresh produce and charcuterie) . I might also want to check out the spice store there (spices are one of my favorite traveling souvenirs).

                    Ferry building and Berkeley Bowl are not what I'm after, as I can go to those any old time.
                    Though I may pick up some goodies from the Ferry building ahead of time for the drive.

                    Anybody have any favorite items at the Oxbow Market, Model Bakery, Oakville Grocery or Sunshine Market?

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: pauliface

                      I work across the street from Oxbow and eat lunch there often...

                      The Fatted Calf will have a daily sandwich or two available if you get there early enough; they often sell out. If they do, you can still get very good charcuterie sliced to order.

                      Then head to Model Bakery, next door (these two stores are outside the actual Oxbow building, on the other side of Gott's Roadside). From Model, pick up your bread or rolls. Personally, I'm a sucker for their English muffins, but you need a toaster and butter for those.

                      Then walk inside the market for your cheese. If you are hungry, stop at Hog Island for some oysters to stave off the hunger or the duck tacos from C-Casa is pretty fabulous.

                      A coffee from ritual might be the ticket to help finish the drive up to Calistoga and if you stop at the spice market, pick up some Vadouvan - they are one of the few who sell it.

                      Hope this helps!

                      Fatted Calf
                      644-C First Street, Napa, CA 94559

                      Model Bakery
                      610 First Street, Napa, CA 94559

                      1. re: pauliface

                        If you're not aware, note that V. Sattui is a HUGE tourist trap, and the food is fine, but quite overpriced for what it is. I would imagine that the only reason to go is if you need to have the picnic on-site at a winery (but the crowds!).

                        1. re: abstractpoet

                          The whole area is a huge tourist trap..
                          V. Sattui is great for pick up of olives, cheeses, sandwiches, drinks and move on..
                          I didn't think the prices were off the mark at all..

                          1. re: Beach Chick

                            People have been making wine in the Napa Valley for at least 150 years. There were good reasons for tourists to go there long before there were enough of them to make it profitable to create irrelevant tourist traps like V. Sattui, the wine train, and Castello di Amorosa.

                        2. re: pauliface

                          I love that spice shop inside Oxbow -- it's tiny, but really well stocked, and the staff is incredibly helpful, I always end up leaving with something that I haven't even heard of before.

                          Fatted Calf is completely wonderful, they have great specials and charcuterie, and I love their big fat salamis (get a knife to slice them yourself). Model Bakery often sells out of their baguette type breads on weekends (that's at least been my experience whenever I've gone), so try to get there early.

                          Fatted Calf
                          644-C First Street, Napa, CA 94559

                          Model Bakery
                          610 First Street, Napa, CA 94559

                          1. re: JasmineG

                            I wonder if I can call ahead to Fatted Calf and/or Model Bakery to have them set aside some sandwiches and/or baguettes...

                            Fatted Calf
                            644-C First Street, Napa, CA 94559

                            Model Bakery
                            610 First Street, Napa, CA 94559

                            1. re: pauliface

                              It never hurts to ask...

                              Report back and tell us what they tell you!

                            2. re: JasmineG

                              If you want the best bread, jump off the freeway at University and swing by Acme.

                              Acme Bread
                              1601 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, CA 94702