Napa Valley Wine Tasting Experience & ★ Michelin Starred Restaurant – Bouchon

Napa Valley is one the of the world’s famous wine region producing many wines, which we often heard, were sold at exorbitant prices.

The drive from San Francisco to Napa Valley took about 1.5 hours and we stopped by Napa City Centre for a quick breakfast at Alexis Baking Company before visiting vineyards which were located at Yountville (further North).

My yummy breakfast =)

Continuing our journey, we finally got to see nice scenery of the vineyards! Thou until now I haven’t got the chance to see any vineyards with leaves & grapes on them as I usually only travel during Winter…

The first vineyard we visited was Robert Mondavi. Took a photo of the iconic structure and tower located at the main entrance, which was used as the logo of Robert Mondavi wine labels.

Wine tasting at most of the vineyards in Napa comes with a fee ranging from US$20-30, unlike those in Australia (which were usually FOC). At Robert Mondavi, they had 2 tasting rooms, one for the Reserves wine and one for the normal range.

Before going to our next stop, Beringer, we drove into the compound of Opus One (which was right opposite Robert Modavi) to take a look cos we can’t afford their wines…even tasting cost a bomb!!!

Soon it was time to go for our lunch at the 1-star Michelin restaurant – Bouchon. We had originally wanted to make reservations at The French Laundry (3-star Michelin restaurant) but they were fully booked 2 months in advanced… =(

I was slightly disappointed with Bouchon’s food as it was pretty straight-forward French bistro fare. Maybe I had too high expectations of Michelin restaurants???

Anyway what caught my eye was that the menu was printed on brown paper and used as a napkin holder. What an interesting idea.

  • Petit Plateau1/2 lobster, 8 oysters, 4 shrimp, 4 clams, 8 mussels
  • Steak Frites pan-seared prime flatiron, caramelized shallots & maître d’hôtel butter served with French fries
  • Coquilles St. Jacques au Cidrepan seared day boat scallops with apple pain perdu, confit of pumpkin, caramelized salsify, apples & cider emulsion
  • Dessertchocolate brownie with ice cream and sorbet

After lunch, we dropped by one of the boutique wineries – Turnbull Wine Cellars but didn’t manage to get any wines there. But interestingly at the cellar door, we stumbled upon an article introducing several other choice boutique wineries, one of which being Grgich Hills Winery.

We made our way to Grgich Hills Winery as our last stop for the day in Napa Valley.

I hadn’t known much history about Grgich Hills Winery but went to do some online search after hearing that the founder was the winemaker whose vintage Chardonnay defeated the French wine in a blind taste test in the historic Paris Wine Tasting of 1976 and was ranked the number one white wine. The story was mentioned in a movie called Bottle Shock.

To avoid jams back to San Francisco city, we left by around 4pm ending our day of Wine & Dine at Napa Valley~

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