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We woke up Sunday morning (Halloween!) to a gorgeous day. The sun was shining!
After we hugged and kissed the parents goodbye after breakfast, the two of us headed off to hit the last few wineries that were on the suggested lists from some of our wine-industry contacts back in North Carolina.
Since it was so beautiful out, and all the other pictures are of the crummy overcast weather, we got a little picture-happy.
Headed down 29 toward the Carneros region.
Look at that, it's blue sky.
Definitely some pretty landscapes out here.
After a short 15 minute drive from St. Helena to the Carneros region, we pulled into the entrance of Domaine Carneros.
I think I could live here.
The grounds were very well manicured.
The girlfriend made me take a picture of this because the rams looked like something. I can't remember what.
After we got to the main level, we walked around the patio area. I can’t believe how picturesque everything is.
This is looking...sorta...northward.
I'nm loving this blue sky.
This is looking back out toward the highway.
I know people don't want to look at pictures of landscapes, but it was pretty.
We sat down and were handed this menu by one of the hostesses.
Domain Carneros is owned by the French Champange house Taittinger.
I like their logo, too.
What to drink (at 10am)? Life is so hard.
I loved these columns.
They just seemed so old-world to me.
Next, a true Frenchwoman came out and asked us about our “tasting preferences.” Her name was Nicole. She had the most beautiful French accent, which perfectly rounded out the whole sparkling wine tasting experience.
Here she is with our two tastings.
Mmm. Sparkling wine and Pinot Noir.
And now, a never-before scene posted on the build site….
A romantic moment!!!
And then, of course, I reverted back to landscapes.
Yup. I could live here.
After finishing our tasting and heading inside to the cashier (to buy a few bottles), we headed off to the industrial district of Napa (one of the actual cities in Napa Valley).
This bride is over the Napa River. Instead of taking a picture of the river, I am still focussed on the mountains.
Hey look! It’s Falcor.
This place was awesome. These guys were very generous with their pours, they had football on the big screen, and there were two dogs playing in the foyer. Way to steal our hearts, Falcor.
Here is our host. From what I can remember, he runs the show here with his girlfriend.
Private tasting room.
Here's the foyer with his girlfriend, a couple custom crushers (they bring their grapes to Falcor to make their own wine.)
They basically made us try everything they had. Here are the nine (what I’ll call “standard”) wines. After these nine, he busted out the zin port.
One of each, please!
The two dogs.
They were so cute.
Umm. I think this is the “Welcome to Napa” (the city) sign. Later on, I think I grabbed a picture of the “Welcome to Napa” (the valley) sign. That’s the famous one.
Headed back into the city from the industrial district.
Alright, Andrew. Stop taking picture of landscapes.
There it is! You'll have to click on the picture to read it.
The guys at Falcor highly recommended the Rutherford Grill.
This would be an awesome casual dinner spot.
They offered us a seat outside (of course! the sun is out!).
It was still a little brisk, though, so they put us right in front of the fireplace.
Whoa. I think this was the best food of the whole trip.
This is the catch of the day with "very" wild rice.
I think this was a chicken sandwich with garlic mashed potatoes.
So all weekend we kept seeing the Napa Valley Wine Train. I guess it starts in San Francisco and stops at all of the little downs up and down the valley. I really wanted a picture of it, so I was going to get up and go frame it really well.
Then I saw this awesome chick standing on the wall doing some weird interpretive dance thing as a pose in front of the train.
Yup. I’ll take a picture of that too.
You just made the internet, honey.
Oh. I almost forgot. I wanted to take some picture of the beautiful landscape in case you hadn’t seen any yet.
I don't know what got into me.
Now we are on our way to Plumpjack. Cool place, but our mouths were ruined from Lunch (tasting wise…lunch was awesome, but way flavorful).
Driveway to Plumpjack.
Patio at Plumpjack.
They had really cool grounds.
I think the girlfriend was in the bathroom, and I was bored.
Okay, now even I am getting sick of these.
We didn’t really have a good experience there. The guys were busy, and basically didn’t tell us anything about the wines.
Finally, our last winery of the trip…Silver Oak.
Looks like some new vines.
Even at the last place, I had to get the view.
Their building was really cool.
I loved the stonework.
And this awesome infinity pool block.
Inside, we had a couple tastings of magnificant wine, but all the bottles for sale were upwards of $70 and $100. It was good wine, but we found bottles that knocked our socks off elsewhere for $30 and $40.
They did have a cool wine cellar area.
That's a big cork! (Said like "that's a big a meatball!")
I bet I could fit this wine cellar in my house.
I'd just have to rid of a few bedrooms.
Here’s the tasting bar.
Nice, but merh on the prices.
I just deleted a whole bunch of pictures of me in the hot tub. You guys didn’t want to see that.
That night, we did Go Fish for dinner. Great food. Crummy martini (I said "DIRTY!")
Tomorrow, we head home, but I still got some cool pictures of the drive back (not as many landscapes, I promise.)
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