We Sacramentans are so lucky to have Napa so close to us. It’s only an hour and some change away and it makes for a great escape. I had the pleasure of going to the Napa Valley Film Festival with my friend Pamm in tow, and made Downtown Napa my home base, thanks to a partnership with the Downtown Napa Association. I haven’t been to the region in so long, so it was nice to experience a part of town that I hadn’t in the past. I love how walkable and accessible everything is Downtown. We only called an Uber once, I swear, and we had a good reason to: it was raining!
I’m telling you now, there’s going to be a follow up to this post, but I couldn’t wait to share the scoop!
Where I Stayed
The River Terrace Inn was our home base and it was truly our home away from home. Cozy yet modern, the property is gorgeous and the interior is sprinkled with books as the main element of their decor.
If you’re feeling like being cozy and literally staying in your room the entire time, you have my full support! I believe in taking time for R&R in a beautiful setting. If that’s your fate, you’ll be happy to know that their restaurant ALBA has a delectable menu of food and libations, and you can head to their rear patio with chic fire pits! I’d have a picture of that, but, it rained on our visit!
They have room service, so if it’s a special occasion or you feel like treating yourself, take advantage!
The Stroll to Oxbow
The River Terrace Inn is centrally located to the best of the town as well as the main roads to neighboring wineries. I love how connected the hotel is to Downtown. Upon arrival, we took a five-minute stroll down the trail ended up at Oxbow Public Market. Go right, and you’ll head to the heart of downtown. Go left, and you’ll head to the CIA at Copia. See what I mean about great location?
I’m no stranger to Oxbow Public Market, but if you’re unfamiliar, Oxbow is Napa’s public marketplace, home to many food and wine vendors and artisans. Some have brick and mortars in the valley, and some don’t. Either way, it’s a unique experience at Oxbow. Your senses are sure to be stimulated and you’ll be enticed to stop along the way and enjoy a treat or two. I speak from experience! Want to know my favorites?
- The Margherita pizza with a side of torched Brussel sprouts at Live Fire Pizza
- Any of the salads at C Casa
- Bacon Cheeseburger at Gott’s
- The Roasted Chicken Rub at Whole Spice
- Chili Lime Tortilla Chip Brittle at Anette’s Chocolates
- Brandy Cordial at Napa Valley Distillery
The Walk to Downtown
With just another five minute walk across the Napa River, you’ll end up at the Riverfront, and the beginning of Downtown Napa. Because I’ve been to downtown before, we mainly stayed in the Riverfront area as it was a new area for us to explore. There are restaurants, shops, and entertainment venues around, and a quiet rainy morning meant for some fun perusing. Make your way to JaM Cellars and Brown Estate for some great wine tasting!
Maybe it’s because we were fresh from the NVFF and a few culinary demos, but Pamm and I spent a lot of time at the Napa General Store. It’s your one-stop-shop, with a specialty boutique, wine bar, and cafe. You can find a little gift for those special people on your list, while you have a little lunch prepared by their kitchen. We stocked up on some goodies!
I had the best time chatting with the owners and staff of all of the places I visited. They were all very kind and happy to have us there. With the devastation of the wildfires, the region is feeling the decline of visitors. We felt it. One evening, it was just us in a popular tasting room, which we were told was not the norm. Because Napa Valley thrives on tourism, they need us to visit them now, and when I say they, I mean everyone that has a hand in making your visit wonderful: tasting room associates, FOH and BOH staff of your favorite eateries, and so forth. When you’re thinking of taking a day trip, staycation hosting a party, think of the beautiful and hospitable folks in the Napa region! Just don’t forget to hit me up if there’s an extra seat in your car. 🙂
Thanks for reading!