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Jul 9, 2012 08:30 AM

Napa valley questions

Spending a week in Napa (staying in Napa city proper) with my wife. We're a little different. Our plan is sit down lunches, then picnic type dinners(cheese, bread and wine) - or quick cheap ones. we do not eat most meat, shell fish or Mexican (because we're from Arizona). we have a car and need options for all over the valley- unsure sure where we'll be. Here are some of my thought so far, I appreciate any other suggestions.


Graces Table
Farm at Carneros
mustard's grill

picnic supplies:

Dean and deluca
oakville grocery
Are there better places that us tourist don't know about?

cheap dinners:

Taylor's Gott's
Carpe Diem

What are the best wine shops for finding some of the better wines are the best prices- I usually go to Backroom (sorta a wine snob in terms of quality)

thanks for the help.

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  1. Better wines at the best prices, stop by Wine Club or K&L in SF on your way from the airport. You might consider a detour to Sonoma to visit the Rare Wine Co.

    1. Goofy,

      You are pretty spot-on with your plans so far, but I might recommend...

      I know you want picnic food for dinner, but Grace's Table has half-price happy hour for their appetizers from 3:00 to 6:00 - if you plan a late lunch there, you will save a lot of money and get the benefit of their expansive menu. I prefer their small plates anyway, although their roast chicken is heavenly. It would also make for a cheap dinner for you.

      Mustard's would be my one question - it is decent and all that but mostly just a selection of very large portions of grilled meats. For the Napa valley, I think there are more interesting options (SolBar and Farm at Carneros are good). You might want to look at the menus of Brassicas (newly opened) and Farmstead (owned by Long Meadow Ranch folks - both great farm-to-table offerings).

      Taylor's er Gott's is not necessarily that cheap; my BF and I had two burgers, one glass of wine, and a shake last weekend and that (without any fries) was $50. I have spent the same at Grace's Table during their Happy Hour or limiting myself to entrees and a glass of wine.

      I love Backroom and think you are fine there, but you might also consider Vintner's Collective which is just around the corner. They pour a dozen or so local vineyards who are too small to have tasting rooms.

      For picnic supplies, those are the standard places but if you are interested in a great Italian sandwich, Genova Delicatessen on Trancas is pretty amazing. A lot of us locals buy picnic supplies from Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, or Vallergas markets as the ones you mentioned are EXPENSIVE, but occasionally worth it.

      Lastly, consider a breakfast pastry from Sweetie Pies. Best in the valley...

      1 Reply
      1. re: CarrieWas218

        great suggestions Carrie. I have wanted to try one of Cindy's restaurants- so I think we'll try to hit Brassica.

        as for Gott's, no my favorite but my wife loves the tuna burger. I think saving Grace's Table for a happy hour sounds smart also.

      2. Hey Goofy,

        Try 1313 Main for lunch, they also sell bottles. The staff is awesome, ask for recommendations.

        Try Napa Valley Wine & Cigar, an out of the way bottle shop, run by a great couple. If you indulge, they have a smoking lounge to relax before you hit the road again.

        Stop by Family Wineries Tasting Room... Six wineries in one tasting room. Dry Creek AVA

        Also Balletto Vineyards, is great for picnics. They have self guided tours, if you want to stroll through the vineyards.

        So many wineries, so little time...:-



        1 Reply
        1. re: passportclub

          Note. Family Wineries and Balletto Vineyards are in Sonoma not Napa.