Sunday, April 03, 2016

Playing Tourist in Napa

Although the title is a bit misleading since there were very long days of work involved and very little sleep, the last two weeks have been a whirlwind of new experiences as I've been trying to see more, walking (and running) in areas near The Meritage and filming with a video crew from Black Tomato all around the stunning Napa Valley. The fun a conference at Napa Valley College's St. Helena Campus, where I was able to hear from some great speakers from the hospitality industry and enjoy a fabulous Asian inspired meal prepared by their culinary students.

After a quick trip back to Roseville for Easter celebrations and dinner at Cibo 7 (luckily I go to a church that has Easter services on Friday and Saturday), I was back in Napa for Easter Sunday as we transformed our outdoor spaces into a great spot for an Easter Egg hunt, then welcomed 400 for a spectacular brunch (Mother's Day is coming up soon).

Then the fun began ... there was a Visit Napa Valley meeting that included an invite to Yao Family Winery (yep the Houston Rockets player has diversified after his retirement). Although we didn't see the basketball star for industry night, we did love the wine and the tasting room (granted the white couch might not last). For the next three days I played tour guide and chauffeur as a team film crew from England and Black Tomato came to Napa to film a video for us. We filmed all over The Meritage, plus got to see (and do) some fun things in Napa Valley. We drove around to get scenic shots as the fog that makes Napa so special was hovering over the vineyards and as it cleared, drove by Joseph Phelps, tasted sparkling wines at Mumm Napa, had a quick lunch at Oakville Grocery, interviewed Cindy Pawlcyn at Mustards Grill (and then went back and ate there the next day), and, although I didn't get to go up this time, went up in the air with Balloons Above the Valley for some breathtaking views of the vines below (it's also fascinating to watch them as they prepare for launch with giant fans and some very large flames). We finished up with a tasting at Etude.

Once back in Roseville I rested for a bit, before heading to the Sac Republic home opener ... our cheering helped them win and start the season 2-0, followed by lunch at GB Alehouse and a long run near my house. I'm looking forward to a great season and many more adventures to come.
See all the photos.

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