If you are into wine, I am sure that at some point in your life, like me, you have dreamed of going to Napa Valley. I’ll be honest, Napa Valley is the MAIN reason I wanted to go to San Francisco. I mean I love wineries and this is one of the best wine counties in the world! When we booked our trip to San Francisco the first thing I did was look into wine tours and found what I feel is the best deal! V and I had an amazing time and I wanted to share with you how we put the win in wine on our Napa experience!
When doing our Napa Valley trip, we knew from the beginning we wanted to travel by bus tour. We booked our tour with Tower Tours and it took us from San Francisco to Napa Valley for the entire day. We met at their office near Fisherman’s Wharf around 8:30am and took off. Towers Tours took us to 3 wineries where we received 5 tastings at each, plus a spot for lunch in between. Our bus driver Joe was very informative along the way. There was at least 30 minutes in between each winery, so the day was a little long, but it never felt like we were in the bus for too much time. Our day had us travel to two wineries, then a spot for lunch, and ending at the third winery before making it back to the city around 5pm. This tour cost us $135 each, which may seem a little high, but it was worth every penny! I had one of my best days I can mostly remember here, and I highly suggest this tour! If you are interested in booking with Tower Tours, click here. Next I will talk about each winery that we visited and what I loved most about them. 🙂 BONUS: The place where you meet has a lots of gorgeous flowers which is where I got the picture below.
Madonna Estates Winery
Madonna Estates was the first stop on our Napa Wine Tour and we really enjoyed it. The wine was of course delicious, but I really appreciated how informative the staff was. I had never learned how to chew wine before, so I left feeling like a more sophisticated wine connoisseur after our visit. I feel ready to impress or annoy my family and friends now. 😉 If you don’t know what chewing wine is, don’t worry neither did I before, so click here to watch a YouTube tutorial over it, or just find out when you get to Madonna Estates. They also showed us where they store the wine and gave us plenty of background information. I appreciated this, as we only got that experience at this winery that day. My favorite wine we tasted at Madonna Estates was their rose’ wine. We sampled the 2018 estate bottled Rosetto, and I fell in love. They had a great Pinot Noir worth mentioning too, but I have to cast my vote for favorite as the Rosetto, and V agrees! We had our 5 samples and then headed on the road to our next wine tasting. To find out more about Madonna Estates, or maybe order you a bottle of the Rosetto to taste, click here.
Sutter Home Winery
So like me, you have probably heard of Sutter Home before. I buy it all the time at home, so I was a little excited that I would recognize the taste. Y’all!!! It tastes SO MUCH BETTER here in Napa Valley than it does from my local Wal-Mart, so it was a totally unique experience. My favorite of the five tastings was the Zinfandel Port. It is so delicious. After our trip to Portugal we are obsessed with port wine, and this one did not disappoint. A close second for us here was the Moscato. The best part about Sutter Home is not even the wine, it is the scenery. Okay fine, it’s enjoying the scenery with a glass of wine, but still! They have a garden area for you to relax in and enjoy your samples, and you will love the pictures you get here. They had an adorable room for bed and breakfast here, so if that is something you want to do in Napa Valley, I suggest staying here. I could just imagine waking up in the morning, grabbing a glass (or a coffee… don’t judge me) and watching the sun rise over the vineyard from this garden. Doesn’t it sound romantic?! There is even a gazebo! This is a perfect Anniversary spot fellas (hint, hint)!!! Now that I am done reminiscing, click here to see more about Sutter Home Winery for yourself, and possibly book your tour.
Lunch Stop – Ottimo
Something I really liked was the area where our bus dropped us off for lunch. There were plenty of eatery options, so whatever you are in the mood for, you will likely find it. I know what you are thinking, and the answer is no, lunch is not included in your tour. You will need to purchase that for the day, so prepare yourself and your wallet. We were in the mood for Italian, so we went to Ottimo. It was delicious! I had a Queen Margherita Pizza and it was so, so good! I highly recommend it! V had the Smoked Salmon Panino (pictured below) and I had to try a bite, it was so yummy! This place was a little pricey, but I do think it was worth it. To check out their menu and decide for yourself, click here. I really enjoyed the setting around Ottimo, as we took some good pictures once we finished our meal as well. We had about an hour to eat, so we finished our meal, snapped some photos and then it was off to our final winery.
Andretti Winery was V and I’s favorite winery of the day! The wine was delicious, the staff was extremely friendly, the vineyards were near and picture worthy, they had a wine trolley, a gallery and the overall ambiance is just unbeatable. When going to Napa Valley, this place is a must! There are plenty of chairs set out too so you can get a nice relaxing view of the vineyard, plus you can get lots of great photos of you prancing through the vineyards, at least that is what I did. I mean if you go to Napa Valley and don’t get a single photo of you walking through a vineyard, did you really go to Napa Valley?! I didn’t think so, and so I was grateful for Andretti for providing plump, picturesque vineyards for us. They also had a trolley where V and I took turns hanging on for photos. My favorite wine here was the Sauvignon Blanc. It was so smooth and delicious, and they luckily let me go back for seconds! Another one we loved here, but they didn’t have it out for sampling, was their own version of port wine. You can get a little bottle for the same price as a glass, so be sure to ask prices beforehand if you go to buy more than your five samples. We truly enjoyed the Andretti Winery and would definitely come back here. To find out more about this place, click here.
We truly enjoyed the crapa out of Napa and would suggest doing a wine tour here to anyone considering it! Again we loved our tour with Tower Tours, but there are plenty more options for you if you want to go experience Napa Valley a different way. You can take private car tours, spend the night at a bed and breakfast, do bike tours, or even drive up yourself. It all depends on what experience you would like to have. The only thing that matters, is that you go!!! Napa Valley was a great experience that I will always appreciate. Great wine, great scenery, awesome photo opportunities, and time spent with loved ones, who could complain?!
If you have ever been to Napa Valley, what was your favorite Winery you visited? Also, comment below your favorite winery you have ever visited! I’m talking anywhere in the world, I would love to include it on my travel bucket-list. I am always up for a new wine tasting. 😉
Until next time…. XOXO ❤