The Ultimate Guide To Wine Country

There are many reasons that living in San Francisco is incredible. But, one that rises to the top of the list is most definitely our proximity to wine country. With its rolling hills, big skies, and small-town rustic charm, it's the ultimate escape from the city.
And, when you do make the journey up north, we want you to experience the absolute coolest the valley has to offer. That's why we've culled the most gorgeous and inspired places to drink, eat, stay, and visit in Napa and Sonoma. Do any combination of the picks on this hefty list and we can pretty much guarantee an amazing time. From the hippest winery in the land to the hotels worth splurging on, this is your ultimate guide, cool kids!
Bonus: We'll keep updating this expansive list as new properties pop up, so keep checking back before you hit the road. Bottoms up!
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Photographed by Molly DeCoudreaux
Where To Drink
On the Sonoma side...

Scribe Winery
The ultimate cool-kids' winery, this gorgeous property boasts a entry lane lined with palm trees, a crumbling hacienda to explore, rope swings with views of the vines, and awesome wines served up by a young, hip staff. Be sure to join the wine club for access to quarterly pick-up events that include eats by some of S.F.'s buzziest chefs and amazing people-watching.
Scribe Winery, 2300 Napa Road (between Denmark Street and Nicholas Road), Sonoma; 707-939-1858.

Ram's Gate Winery
Roughly 45 minutes away from the city, this rustic-chic tasting room is one of the best places to stop as you enter wine country. Get comfy in the plush furniture stashed around the large property, curl up in front of an outdoor fireplace, or next to the venue's pond while sipping your vino. Great for groups and those wanting a more sleek wine-country experience.
Ram's Gate Winery, 28700 Arnold Drive (at Manguel Ranch Road), Sonoma; 707-721-8700.

Dutcher Crossing
This Geyserville winery isn't a big name, but boy is she a beaut. Buy some goods from a local general store (see some options on our Where To Eat list), and set up an alfresco meal on the picnic table overlooking stunning, rolling hills. Bonus: The tasting is a mere $5 on weekdays and $10 on weekends.
Dutcher Crossing, 8533 Dry Creek Road (at Dutcher Creek Road), Healdsburg; 707-431-2700.

Bergamot Alley
After all the wineries and restaurants have closed, this is where you head in Healdsburg to have a good time…well, until 1 a.m. The brick-walled joint spins vinyl, has boardgames at the ready, and hosts movie nights. Plus, there's a great selection of international pours.
Bergamot Alley, 328 Healdsburg Avenue (between North and Plaza streets), Healdsburg; 707-433-8720.

Get your fancy cocktail on at H2 Hotel's eco-friendly watering hole, first made famous by Scott Beattie's artisanal sips. Beattie might be gone, but the drinks are still farm-to-glass fresh and yummy as ever.
Spoonbar, 219 Healdsburg Avenue (between West Matheson and Mill streets), Healdsburg; 707-433-7222.

Bean & Bottle at The Lodge at Sonoma
For when a bottle of wine just won't do, Bean & Bottle, the bar at The Lodge at Sonoma, offers a plethora of local spirits to drink straight-up or mix into inventive cocktails. We're talking everything from Firelit's Blue Bottle coffee liquor to Sonoma's own Hello Cello limoncello.
Bean & Bottle at The Lodge at Sonoma, 1325 Broadway (between Napa Road and Denmark Street), Sonoma; 707- 935-6600.
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Photo: Courtesy of Cade Winery
Where To Drink
On the Napa side...

Cade Winery
Get your breath swept away at this beautiful hilltop winery, which reads more Tahoe than Napa, thanks to the woodsy feel and foliage. The modernist, LEED Gold-certified property produces four wines that you can sip in front of an infinity pool that gives way to an awe-inspiring view.
Cade Winery, 360 Howell Mountain Road South (between Bookside and Viewridge drives), Angwin; 707-965-2746.

Odette Estate
Cade's smaller sister winery sits on the scenic Silverado Trail and is the newest of Plumpjack's ventures. The design of the space is light-soaked, California modern, and the yet-to-open caves are sure to be equally dreamy.
Odette Estate, 5998 Silverado Trail (between Yountville Cross Road and Capps Drive), Napa; 707-224-7533.

The Sip Shoppe by Swanson Vineyards
If Kate Spade had a tasting room, this would be it. Which makes sense once you find out her husband Andy Spade is one of the retail partners of the venue. Sit in the circus-themed "shoppe" or grab a picnic table outside to taste a flight of Swanson Vineyards' wines in cute glass Dixie cups. Girly girls, this is your spot.
The Sip Shoppe by Swanson Vineyards, 1271 Manley Lane (at St. Helena Highway), Rutherford; 707-754-4018.

Hourglass Winery
Another modern Napa gem, this appointment-only space is both relaxed (chill on the fold-out lawn chairs if you'd like), and sleek, thanks to an awesome 7,000-square-foot cave that hosts a tasting bar featuring a rad Tord Boontje chandelier and seating draped with cozy sheepskin rugs.
Hourglass Winery, 1104 Adams Street (between St. Helena Highway and Railroad Avenue), St. Helena; 707-968-9332.

If you're wandering Yountville and want to get your wine on outside the vineyards, hit this urban tasting room that doubles as an art gallery of sorts. The historic manor offers three private tasting rooms, but we suggest grabbing a blanket and heading outside, stretching out on the lawn, warming up near the fire pit, or pulling up a seat at the long communal table to get tipsy.
Ma(i)sonry, 6711 Washington Street (between Pedroni Street and Parkey Avenue), Yountville; 707-944-0889.

Pancha's Saloon
This historic Yountville saloon is the definition of a dive. The popular local's haunt is cash-only, filled with an assorted cast of characters on any given night (including celebs), and — lucky for some, unlucky for others — is smoker-friendly.
Pancha's Saloon, 6764 Washington Street (between Madison Street and Burgundy Way), Yountville; 707-944-2125.

Empire Bar
Throw on some heels and get your sexy on at this downtown Napa emporium for hand-crafted cocktails and small plates. Adding to the dressed-up appeal are the red-velvet seats, exposed-brick walls, and ultra-flattering candelabra light. Did we mention there's a jellyfish tank?
Empire Bar, 1400 1st Street (between School and Franklin streets), Napa; 707-254-8888.
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Photo: Courtesy of The Thomas and Fagiani's Bar
Where To Drink
On the Napa side (continued)...

The Thomas and Fagiani's Bar
An awesome addition to the downtown Napa scene, this hip restaurant and bar was a former speakeasy during Prohibition days. Now, it serves up seasonally inspired cocktails like the Rhubarb Gimlet (Bombay Sapphire East, rhubarb shrub, fresh lime juice), a selection of locally crafted beer, and wine.
The Thomas and Fagiani's Bar, 813 Main Street (between 2nd and 3rd streets), Napa; 707-294-2918.

Kenzo Estate
This showpiece of a winery comes courtesy of an all-star team, including consulting wine marker Heidi Barrett, master vineyard manager David Abreu, and superstar chef Thomas Keller. The by-appointment tastings also come with your choice of two yummy grub pairings — a charcuterie plate or lunch. The view at this venue, set on 3,800 acres of natural reserve? Equally delectable.
Kenzo Estate, 3200 Monticello Road (between Wild Horse Valley and Wooden Valley roads), Napa; 707-254-7572.

Turnbull Wine Cellars
This family winery has just been taken over by the next generation and is amping up for big, cool things to come. Everything you taste is grown right on the pretty property. This is the country-house-and-winery setup you dream of, kids.
Turnbull Wine Cellars, 8210 St. Helena Highway (between Bella Oaks Lane and Oakvill Road), Rutherford; 707-963-5839.

Sullivan Winery
Another family-owned winery undergoing a revamp, we love the warm and uber-relaxed feel of this place, which invites guests to scamper around the pond-side property, marveling at the clan's cool vintage-car collection, and brand-new tasting room.
Sullivan Winery, 1090 Galleron Road (by St. Helena Highway), St Helena; 707-963-9646.

Solbar at Solage Calistoga
This Michelin Star-awarded Calistoga restaurant and bar serves up "California soul food" and fancy cocktails on a cool outdoor patio (chic fire pits included). Kick your feet up while taking in the mountain-range views…and foxy clientele.
Solbar at Solage Calistoga, 755 Silverado Trail (at Rosedale Road), Calistoga; 707-226-0800.
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Photo: Courtesy of The Carneros Inn
What To Do
On the Napa side...

The Carneros Inn Spa
Just take a look at that picture above, kids. Yep, that's the view at The Carneros Inn, located less than an hour away from S.F. If you can't afford to shell out for a room at this luxe getaway (prices start at $605), we suggest you make a day of it at the spa. Monday through Thursday, the spa opens its doors to folks not staying the night. For a resort fee of $50 per person, plus a minimum of $400 in spa services (spread amongst two people), you'll get access to the property's lush grounds, plus your own private guest cottage (a fireplace, jacuzzi, and outdoor shower included!) to cuddle up in from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Carneros Inn Spa, 4048 Sonoma Highway (at Carneros Highway), Napa; 707-299-4900.

Indian Springs Resort & Spa
Another place to zen out in Napa, Indian Springs is a historic spot known for its Olympic-size mineral pool and restorative mudbaths utilizing the pure volcanic ash found on the property. After you get rubbed down and have taken a nice, long dip, you can't go wrong relaxing next to the Buddha Pond or lounging in the beautiful Mission Revivial-style space.
Indian Springs Resort & Spa, 1712 Lincoln Street (between Stevenson Street and Wapoo Avenue), Calistoga; 707-942-4913.

Cameo Cinema
Grab a flick on St. Helena's main strip at this cozy theater, featuring plush, loveseat-like chairs and indie movies galore. History buffs will enjoy the fact that the theater dates back to the early 1900s, but has seen many incarnations (and name changes) since then.
Cameo Cinema, 1340 Main Street (between Adams Street and Hunt Avenue), St. Helena; 707-963-9779.

St. Helena Farmers' Market
Indulge in all of the fine produce wine country has to offer at this Friday-morning farmers' market, rumored to be the best in the area. Bonus: There is story time for the kiddies and weekly demonstrations by top Napa chefs for the adults. Runs May through October, every Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 12 noon.
St. Helena Farmers' Market, at Crane Park (Grayson and Crane avenues); no phone.

Cooking Classes at the CIA
What to do with all of that goodness you just scooped up from the farmers' market? Find out how to transform it into masterful dishes at one of the CIA's Saturday-morning cooking classes! The castle-like building in the hills of St. Helena hosts non-fulltime-students at these roughly 3-hour courses. Just call ahead to register.
The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, 2555 Main Street (between Deer Park Road and Pratt Avenue), St. Helena; 707-967-1100.

St. Helena Cyclery
There's nothing quite like seeing the beauty of Napa on two wheels. So, stroll on over to this bike shop and cruise away on your choice of pretty cycles, starting at $40 a day, plus all the gear you need.
St. Helena Cyclery, 1156 Main Street (at Spring Street), St. Helena; 707-963-7736.

Crane Park Bocce Court
In case you haven't noticed, bocce is kind of a big deal in wine country, popping up randomly seemingly everywhere. Get hip to the game by practicing it at the courts at St. Helena's Crane Park, where the locals go. Or, watch the hardcore players do their thing at a St. Helena Bocce League match.
Bocce Courts at Crane Park, (Grayson and Crane avenues); no phone.

Croquet at Meadowood
Another quirky sport you can get down with: croquet at Meadowood. Members, members' guests, and overnight guests can don their best whites and smack the ball around the beautifully manicured lawn. Pricing varies depending on the number of players, and if there's wine and grub involved.
Meadowood, 900 Meadowood Lane (at Silverado Trail North), St. Helena; 707-531-4788.
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Photo: Courtesy of Shed Healdsburg
What To Do
On the Sonoma side...

Healdsburg Shed
With a quest to "bring people together to learn about growing, preparing, and sharing food," this hybrid space is one part home-goods shop, classroom, and cafe. Head to the glassy, two-story, barn-like space to grab coffee, breakfast, or lunch, shop for sleek garden tools and beautiful kitchenwares, sit in on a meeting at The Grange, and even sip something from the fermentation bar, which serves up natural sodas and kombuchas on tap!
Healdsburg Shed, 25 North Street (between Grove Street and Healdsburg Avenue), Healdsburg; 707-431-7433.

The Mercantile Shop
Wine country is admittedly not the best place to shop for clothes. But, we can totally get down with this little shop in Healdsburg, which hawks casual-cool wares by Current/Elliott, LNA, Paige, and Tysa, along with indie jewelry designers, and a smattering of things for the home — from spices to graphic dinner napkins.
The Mercantile Shop, 333 Center Street (between North and Plaza streets), Healdsburg; 707-473-0617.

Meanwhile, decor buffs should head to this tiny store, offering a rotating combination of industrial vintage pieces and mid-century modern goods. Everything from pottery to lighting to furniture and found objects have their place. One of our favorite finds: a collection of "Not your grandmother's plates," which are basically ornate platters with crude language printed on them.
14feet, 325 Center Street (between North and Plaza streets), Healdsburg; 707-433-3391.

Tiddle E. Winks
Oh, how we love a bit of nostalgia. Especially, when we're talking vintage-style candy! This store on Sonoma Square is chock-full of throwback sweets, from candy cigarettes to Fruit Stripe bubblegum. Basically, everything we want in a five and dime.
Tiddle E. Winks, 115 East Napa Street (at 1st Street East), Sonoma; 707-939-6933.

Fat Pilgrim
This contemporary general store, which you'll spot on the way to Sonoma Square, is a good place to stop for a gift or two on your way out of town. Depending on how much you want to spend, you can grab a ceramic egg holder, pig-shaped cutting board, Fat Pilgrim-brand lemon curd, or an industrial-style bookcase in rustic wood.
Fat Pilgrim, 20820 Broadway (between Fisher Lane and Specht Road), Sonoma; 707-721-1287.

Other shopping tips:
For great antiquing, head to Healdsburg's main stretch. Meanwhile, scour the vintage clothing racks of the consignment shops and thrift stores in St. Helena. It's where fancy wine-country ladies go to offload their goodies. We're talking $30 Jimmy Choos and $20 Vena Cava, people!
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Photographed by Molly DeCoudreaux
What To Do
On the Sonoma side (continued)...

Coppola Pools & Cabines
Let's admit it, it hardly gets warm enough to swim in S.F. But, if you head up to Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Geyserville, you can take a dip in a major way. The beyond-cool pool scene includes 3,600 square feet of waterworks, surrounded by lounge chairs, teepees, a bocce-ball court, and a stage for impromptu performances. Not to mention, the movie-memorabilia-packed winery itself! The cabines (a.k.a. places to change, shower, and stash your belongings) often sell out, as do spaces at the pool, so plan ahead! It's soooo worth it. And, please, do us a solid and order the piña colada.
Coppola Pools & Cabines, 300 Via Archimedes (at Souverain Road), Geyserville; 707-857-1400.

The Spa at Hotel Healdsburg
After all of the drinking and grubbing, it's time for a little relaxation. And, the folks at The Spa at Hotel Healdsburg are so ready for you. "Farm to Spa" is the venue's thing, which means facials and massages infused with Meyer lemon, sage, wine, honey, lavender, and other goodies. There's also a mani-pedi station, and you can wrap up your treatment by heading to the pool and jacuzzi area to let it all soak in.
The Spa at Hotel Healdsburg, 25 Matheson Street (at Healdsburg Avenue); 707-431-2800.

Raindance Spa at The Lodge at Sonoma
With massages, body scrubs, pedicures, facials, and even astrology readings on the menu, you can pretty much find what you're looking for at this Sonoma spa. One of our favorite elements, however, is the fact that you also get access to a bunch of outdoor hot tubs and heated pools, plus a eucalyptus steam room, no matter which service you book. Extend your visit accordingly!
Raindance Spa at The Lodge at Sonoma, 1325 Broadway (between West McArthur Street and Leveroni Road), Sonoma; 707-935-6600.

River's Edge Kayak and Canoe Trips
Another option: Sweating it out in nature by renting gear and exploring the Russian River. Choose between a canoe ($80 and up) or a kayak ($45 and up), grab a paddle, and let all of your city woes melt away.
River's Edge Kayak and Canoe Trips, 13840 Healdsburg Avenue (between Front Street and Bailhache Avenue), Healdsburg; 707-433-7247.
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Photo: Courtesy of Oakville Grocery
Where To Eat
On the Napa side...

Oakville Grocery
Founded in 1881, this is the oldest continually running grocery store in California. But, it's anything but stale. Think of this recently revamped place as the Bi-Rite of wine country, which makes it the ultimate locale to stock up for an epically yummy picnic.
Oakville Grocery, 7856 St. Helena Highway (at Oakville Road), Oakville; 707-944-8802.

La Condesa
This James Beard-nominated restaurant is one of the few places to get a Mexican meal of the elevated variety (carne asada with oak-grilled Niman Ranch steak, chimichurri, heirloom tomato and avocado salad, cebollitas, and spiced french fries, anyone?). To sweeten the deal, the decor is as lively as the menu.
La Condessa, 1320 Main Street (between Adam Street and Hurt Avenue), St. Helena; 707-967-8111.

Expect to find this narrow spot packed wall-to-wall with locals and, more impressively, local chefs. Northern Italian is the name of the game, and if the discerning clientele is any indication, it's well above par.
Cook, 1310 Main Street (between Adam Street and Hurt Avenue), St. Helena; 707-963-7088.

Gott's Roadside
Looking for some grub to mop up that wine hangover with? Look no further than this gourmet-burger stand — with locations in St. Helena and downtown Napa — that serves up a variety of patties (from the Wisconsin Sourdough Burger to the Green Chile Cheeseburger), fish tacos, BBQ chicken, hot dogs, chili-cheese fries, and a few farm-fresh salads to keep things somewhat healthy.
Gott's Roadside, 933 Main Street (between Mitchell Drive and Charter Oak Avenue), St. Helena; 707-963-3486.

French Blue
Residing in the old Vanderbilt building on the north end of downtown St. Helena, French Blue is something out of Martha Stewart's dreams…and we mean that in the best way possible. The restaurant is all clean, neutral hues and high ceilings, while the menu features everything from grilled Bodega Bay king salmon to crispy pizzas. Be sure to check out the country-cool items for sale around the space, too (house-made jams, pretty French towels, etc.).
French Blue, 1429 Main Street (between Pine and Adam streets), St. Helena; 707-968-9200.

The Model Bakery
This nearly 90-year-old bakery serves up what is said to be the best english muffin in the world. Yep. Go for that, and stay for a host of rustic breads made with organic stone-ground flour, Morning Glory muffins, cookies, pies, and a full breakfast and lunch menu.
The Model Bakery, 1357 Main Street (at Adams Street), St. Helena; 707-963-8192.

The Restaurant at Meadowood's Bar
Can't afford the $225 chef's tasting menu at the thrice-Michelin-starred The Restaurant at Meadowood? Try the private club/resort's bar, instead. There's you'll find a superb and affordable snacks menu, plus delectable cocktails, all in a swank atmosphere.
The Restaurant at Meadowood's Bar, 900 Meadowood Lane (at Silverado Trail N), St. Helena; 707-531-4788.

Goose & Gander
Brace yourself for a lot of bird taxidermy…in addition to expertly crafted cocktails courtesy of Scott Beattie and supremely unique, "rustic American" eats from Chef Kelly McCown. Another cool element: Your choice of enjoying the latter two in the lush, clubhouse-like dining room, dimly lit basement bar, or light-strung patio.
Goose & Gander, 1245 Spring Street (at Oak Avenue), St. Helena; 707-967-8779.
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Photo: Courtesy of The Thomas and Fagiani's Bar
Where To Eat
On the Napa side (continued)...

The Thomas and Fagiani's Bar
A welcome addition to the downtown Napa dining scene, this beaut sits above the historic Fagiani's bar and is as pretty as they come. Sit inside the chic AvroKO-designed space, or on the balcony overlooking the Napa River for some of the best Californian cuisine around.
The Thomas and Fagiani's Bar, 813 Main Street (between 2nd and 3rd streets), Napa; 707-294-2918.

Boon Fly Café
One of the first places you'll spot roadside when traveling to Napa, this little red barn (a part of The Carneros Inn) is the place to go for casual, rustic cuisine. Whatever you do, don't forget to order the World Famous Boon Fly Donuts. Actually, make that two orders. And, if you're wanting a more upscale experience, head on over to sister restaurant, FARM, which is crop-to-table fine-dining at its best.
Boon Fly Café, 4048 Sonoma Highway (at Los Carneros Avenue), Napa; 707-299-4900.

Oxbow Public Market
Napa's answer to San Francisco's Ferry Building, this welcoming, multi-vendor space has a little something for everyone. Come for some fresh produce or cold-pressed juice, and leave with eats from The Fatted Calf, Pica Pica Arepa Kitchen, Three Twins Ice Cream, Hog Island Oyster Bar, and many more.
Oxbow Public Market, 644 1st Street (between McKinstry and Vernon streets), Napa; 707-226-6529.

Oenotri Pizza
Is this the best place to get a slice in Napa? Arguably yes (although Redd Wood would certainly have something to say about it). The Napoletana pies are a-mazing, as is the house-made salumi, and pasta, which is made fresh daily.
Oneotri, 1425 1st Street (between School and Franklin streets), Napa; 707-252-1022.

Dim Sum Charlie's

While we pretty much never tire of farm-to-table Cali-meets-Italian cuisine (the reigning queen of wine country), sometimes you just want a dumpling. Which is when you head to local's spot Dim Sum Charlie's. It's cheap. It's tasty. There are vegetarian options and a build-your-own-ramen-bowl feature. Need we say more?
Dim Sum Charlie's, 728 First Street (between Soscal Avenue and McKinstry Street), Napa; 707-815-2355.

Redd Wood
When the pizza cravings come on strong and you're in Yountville, head to Redd Wood, asap. The wine-country pizzeria specializes in wood-fired pies loaded with great local ingredients. Bonus: The industrial-chic design of the space is something to marvel at.
Redd Wood, 6755 Washington Street (between Madison Street and Burgundy Way), Yountville; 707-299-5030.

Bouchon Bakery
If you're one of those people who doesn't mind a line, jump on the one snaking outside the door of Bouchon Bakery, the brainchild of Napa god Thomas Keller. The Parisian-style bakery serves the prettiest little treats, plus you might see Posh and Becks there. They're regular customers when they're in town, which is surprisingly a lot!
Bouchon Bakery, 6528 Washington Street (between Humboldt and Mulberry streets), Yountville; 707-944-2253.

Ad Hoc
Let's admit it: Most of us can not score reservations at the French Laundry. The next best thing? Thomas Keller's more casual dining experience at Ad Hoc, featuring a four-course, $52 prix-fixe dinner menu (with the option to add wine) that changes daily. Also of note is Addendum, Keller's brainchild behind Ad Hoc, which serves boxed lunches of either buttermilk fried chicken or barbeque, Thursday through Saturday.
Ad Hoc, 6467 Washington Street (between Oak Circle and Mission Street), Yountville; 707-944-2487.

Yountville Coffee Caboose
Yes, it's a quirky concept, but this java stand at the even-quirkier Napa Valley Railway Inn gets the job done, offering a great cup of Joe (Ritual Coffee Roasters, to be exact), locally made pastries, bagels, and made-to-order sweet or savory crepes. Pick your poison at your leisure (there's no Bouchon-like lines here!), then enjoy your goods while basking in the Napa sun.
Yountville Coffee Caboose, 6523 Washington Street (between Mulberry and Humboldt streets), Yountville; no phone.

Solbar at Solage Calistoga
You can drink here, you can eat here, you can spa here, you can stay here…is there anything you can't do at Solage? Probably not. If you want to do the former two, hit the ingredient-driven restaurant and lounge, Solbar, for relaxed bistro fare with mountain views.
Solbar at Solage Calistoga, 755 Silverado Trail (at Rosedale Road), Calistoga; 707-226-0800.
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Photo: Courtesy of h2 Hotel
Where To Stay
On the Sonoma side...

El Dorado Hotel
Sitting on the corner of Sonoma Square, this central spot is a great perch for all your wine-country adventures. In addition to a lively pool scene, the hotel includes rooms bathed in light and featuring charming French doors leading out to private balconies. Starting at $205 on weekdays, $245 on weekends.
El Dorado Hotel, 405 1st Street (at West Spain Street), Sonoma; 707-996-3220.

h2 Hotel
A hotel that provides free PUBLIC bikes to its guests for their stay? Sold! And, that's just one of the reasons we like this eco-chic, LEED Gold-certified property, located in downtown Healdsburg. The minimalist rooms feature Heath tiles in the restrooms, ergonomic chairs, and balconies for each guest. It's the hipper cousin to nearby property Hotel Healdsburg, which is also a lovely stay. Starting at $275 on weekdays, $395 on weekends.
h2 Hotel, 219 Healdsburg Avenue (between Matheson and Mill streets), Healdsburg; 707-431-2202.

Farmhouse Inn
Indulging in a country fantasy is what visiting Napa and Sonoma is all about. And, a night at the Farmhouse Inn can make it that much closer to reality. The Russian River Valley property, which houses a Michelin-star restaurant, is sort of like a B&B and luxury hotel rolled into one. We're partial to the barn rooms, which feature four-poster beds, bathtubs with valley views, and exposed-beam ceilings. Starting at $445 a night.
Farmhouse Inn, 7871 River Road (at Wohler Road), Forestville; 707-887-3300.
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Photo: Courtesy of The Girl and The Fig
Where To Eat
On the Sonoma side...

The Girl and The Fig
Lady Gaga likes this spot. And, so do we. The tagline is "country food with a French passion," which translates to a menu filled with heirloom veggies, burgers, omelets, and a healthy amount of fig dishes — from a salted-fig-caramel sundae to a grilled fig and arugula salad.
The Girl and The Fig, 110 West Spain Street (at 1st Street), Sonoma; 707-938-3634.

Fremont Diner
Can this side-of-the-road diner get any more Instagram-able? Not really. With a kitschy-cool exterior and interior, you can bask in a bit of country nostalgia while you gobble down upgraded comfort-food classics like biscuits and gravy, drunken hush puppies, and ricotta pancakes, and wash it down with Four Barrel brew. 
Fremont Diner, 2698 Fremont Drive (at South Central Avenue), Sonoma; 707-938-7370.

El Dorado Kitchen
This polished eatery, tucked into the El Dorado Hotel, offers diners a variety of settings in which to chow down on duck-confit hash and churros (breakfast), mushroom flatbread and fried summer squash (lunch), and housemaid ricotta and lemon ravioli and Niman Ranch pork chops (dinner). Gather your group around a 21-foot-long table in the dining room, or head outside to the courtyard or a private cabana by the pool.
El Dorado Kitchen, 405 1st Street (West Spain Street), Sonoma; 707-996-3030.

Campo Fina
This sexy little Italian spot feels more New York than Sonoma, with a quaint, low-lit, brick-walled dining space that can seat only a couple dozen. But, duck out back to find room for larger parties, plus a bocce-ball set-up to enjoy between bites of Delfina-level pizza and gulps of vino.  
Campo Fina, 330 Healdsburg Avenue (between North and Plaza streets), Healdsburg; 707-395-4640.

Big-sister restaurant to Campo Fina, this beloved eatery is less about the pizza, and more about the tomato-braised chicken and expanded antipasti. One of the first cool restos in wine country, it's not to be missed.  Scopa, 109A Plaza Street (between North and Plaza streets) Healdsburg; 707-433-5282.

Flying Goat Coffee
If you're missing your fix of small-batch coffee in the city, look no further than this cool coffee shop on Healdsburg's town square. Featuring award-winning single-origin beans from Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Keyna, and Mexico, this indie spot is the place to caffeinate.   Flying Goat Coffee, 324 Center Street (between North and Plaza streets), Healdsburg; 707-433-9081.

Moustache Baked Goods
Even if you think moustache motifs are played out, delicious sweet treats really never go out of style. Grab a cream-filled cupcake, housemade Oreo, or ice-cream sammie (all made on the premises), or take some artisanal goodies (by the likes of Four Barrel and Inna Jam) to go.  And, don't leave without taking a few selfies in the 'stache-embellished bathroom mirror. 
Moustache Baked Goods, 381 Healdsburg Avenue (between North and Plaza streets), Healdsburg; no phone.

Got a special occasion? You won't regret celebrating it at Barndiva. This beautiful Healdsburg spot, which looks like a very dressed-up barn (hence the name), makes a grand statement as soon as you open the door. And, that favorable impression will last through the end of dessert, thanks to the supremely farm-fresh menu.
Barndiva, 231 Center Street (between Matheson and Mill streets), Healdsburg; 707-431-0100.

As if Healdsburg needed another culinary jewel, this newbie spot opened in May '13. The modern and airy space (housed in what used to be Cyrus) is all about infusing its delectable small plates with fresh produce culled from its dedicated 3-acre garden. Order the Candy Bar for dessert…and ask questions later.
Chalkboard, 29 North Street (between Gove Street and Healdsburg Avenue), Healdsburg; 707-473-8030.

If the wait's too long over at Campo Fina and Scopa, you're in luck. This new spot, by the same folks behind h2 Hotel's Spoonbar, serves up rustic pizzas, pastas, veggie sides, and desserts all for a great bang for your buck. Bonus: Everything can be ordered to go, which means your picnic plans just got a major upgrade.
Pizzando, 301 Healdsburg Avenue (at Matheson Street), Healdsburg; 707-922-5233.

El Molino Central
When only greasy-spoon Mexican will hit the spot, this roadside dive will do. Now something of a hipster hangout, the buzzy space veers mostly Tex-Mex, with some surprises like Swiss Chard Enchiladas (yum) and cups of Blue Bottle Coffee appeasing more refined palates.
El Molino Central, 11 Central Avenue (between Sonoma Highway and Bonita Way), Sonoma; 707-939-1010.
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Photo: Courtesy of Solage Calistoga
Where To Stay
On the Napa side...

Solage Calistoga
This one's the whole package, kids. A palm-tree-flanked pool surrounded by mountains, cottage-like rooms with complimentary bikes out front, a lively bar and restaurant scene, and a spa that ranks as one of the best in the valley. Put down your bags, and settle in, why don't you? Starting at $630 a night.
Solage Calistoga, 755 Silverado Trail (at Rosedale Road), Calistoga; 707-226-0800.

Chateau De Vie
Be still, my Francophile heart. This little chateau-style bed and breakfast is straight out of a storybook and a great alternative to a traditional hotel. Chill out in the jacuzzi, swim laps in the 40-foot pool, scour through the DVD collection and watch 'em up in your cozy room…just don't skip the incredible alfresco breakfast whipped up by the darling couple who runs the place. It's TDF. Starting at $229 per night.
Chateau De Vie, 3250 California 128 (at Foothill Boulevard), Calistoga; 707-942-6446.

Calistoga Ranch
If you want to splurge — big time — this is a prime place to do it. You pretty much check in here, and don't leave. And, once you arrive at the 157-acre site, you'll understand why. It's a zen oasis with one thing on its mind: ultimate relaxation, made easy with a world-class spa, yoga deck, pool, and endless hiking trails. Starting at $795 a night.
Calistoga Ranch, 580 Lommel Road (at Calistoga Ranch), Calistoga; 707-254-2800.

Indian Springs
The state's oldest continuously operating pool and spa facility, Indian Springs has been around, but has recently undergone a rejuvenation of sorts. Guests either stay in the Spanish-style lodge or in the private cottages (a pricier option), where they recharge after dipping in the storied Olympic-size mineral pool or getting a spa treatment utilizing the pure volcanic ash found on the fertile property. Get ready to exhale in a major way. Starting at $259 on weekdays, $329 on weekends.
Indian Springs, 1712 Lincoln Street (between Stevenson Street and Wapoo Avenue), Calistoga; 707-942-4913.

Andaz Napa
Stay right in the heart of downtown Napa at this ultra-modern boutique hotel. Select suites out of the 141 rooms feature cool, dual-sided fireplaces and roomy soaking tubs. Meanwhile, all guests have access to The Terrace, an outdoor area with porch swings and fire pits. Or, keep the boozy times rolling at the hotel bar, Mercantile Social. Starting at $319.
Andaz Napa, 1450 1st Street (between School and Franklin streets), Napa; 707-224-3900.

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Photo: Courtesy of Bardessono
Where To Stay
On the Napa side (continued)...

The Carneros Inn
Okay, some of these places are dream accommodations and will require some penny-pinching in advance. But, if you want something extra plum, this one's worth it. Resting on 27 acres of scenic vineyards, farmland, and apple orchards, the swank cottages of The Carneros Inn are just begging you to strip down for an outdoor shower, then cozy up next to your personal wood-buring fireplace. Plus, the view from the pool (see page 4 of this guide), is ridonk. Starting at $605 on weekdays, $820 on weekends. Be sure to ask about special day rates.
The Carneros Inn, 4048 Sonoma Highway (at Carneros Highway), Napa; 707-299-4900.

Milliken Creek Inn
It's not every morning in Napa that you can wake up next to a river. But, that's what you get at this tranquil, 12-room hotel with a mom-and-pop feel. Although it's just a hop, skip, and a jump away from everything in Napa, be sure to spend some QT at the hotel itself, especially lounging waterside. Be on the lookout for seasonal packages offering extra perks like spa credits, goodie baskets, and the like. Otherwise, room rates start at $549 on weekdays, $749 on weekends.
Milliken Creek Inn, 1815 Silverado Trail (between Woodland and Stonecrest drives), Napa; 707-255-1197.

North Block Hotel
A slightly more economical option for staying smack-dab in the center of downtown Yountville, this new hotel boasts a yummy on-location restaurant, Redd Wood, private balconies for sun worshippers, modern rooms with tech-friendly amenities, and a heated pool for year-round dips. Starting at $455 on weekdays, $555 on weekends.
North Block Hotel, 6757 Washington Street (between Madison and Pedroni streets), Yountville; 707-944-8080.

Another upscale option, this LEED Paltinum-certified hotel is all about sustainable luxury. There's a rooftop pool, carbon-fiber bikes to take for a spin, beds clothed in organic-cotton sheets, and spa treatments that take place right in your room. Hot tip: Even if you're not staying there, the on-premises hammocks are available for a swingin'. Starting at $700 on weekdays, $900 on weekends.
Bardessono, 6526 Yount Street (between Finnell Road and Mulberry Street), Yountville; 707-204-6000.


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