Napa and its Surroundings, Part 1

Dear TA’s

I love to talk about my favorite part of California, Napa Valley and its surroundings. When I come here my heart just relaxes. I feel like the world stops so I can enjoy every minute, and even Covid rules and worries don’t upset me. I feel like I’m in heaven.

Actually, every time I come to Napa I always stay at the same hotel (The Westin Verasa Napa). I tell my husband that one day I want to retire, live in Napa and work part-time at a winery. Then I go back home and forget my dream until the next time I visit.

Right now, I am sitting on the sofa in my room at the Westin Napa. The view from my room is so peaceful. I love going to Oxbow Market for my breakfast, but first we always stop at Model Bakery for some special treats. The biscuit is everyone’s favorite, and then we head to Ritual Coffee Roasters for the most delicious coffee (even though I drink Chai latte). Casa is an innovative kitchen with New Mexican Cuisine and 100% gluten free (my personal heaven, since I am gluten intolerant). 

I get my infused olive oils and Balsamic vinegars at Olive Press inside the Oxbow Market. I am completely hooked. When I get there, Ruth or Becky know me. It was funny how Becky even recognized me with my mask on from far away and started to walk towards me. Both of us were wearing masks, and we hugged (I honestly forgot we weren’t supposed to). 

For lunch we usually eat in St. Helena since it is between wineries (check Napa and Surroundings Part II). I highly recommend The Market restaurant. Even if you need to eat inside, they have invested a lot in air filters, and remodeled the whole restaurant, so you feel safe eating indoors. Although there are other restaurants in St. Helena, many times we prefer to come back to Napa and enjoy The Oxbow Market and Gott‘s Roadside before enjoying the pool a bit until around 3:30pm before heading to another winery. After all, these are the long days of summer, and we want to be sure to take advantage of the hotel’s swimming pool.

Evenings we enjoy dinner at one of the many restaurants Napa offers: La Toque, Cole’s Chop House and TORC. All need reservations and are within walking distance of the hotel (La Toque is next door to the Westin Vernasa Hotel with an entrance inside the hotel).

My experience in Napa and its surroundings was even better after Covid. I felt that even though many places are still short of staff (like all over the US) by making reservations everywhere or downloading their app and pre ordering meals where possible, my family and I never felt neglected or waited in lines (something that stresses me immensely).

This vacation was very soothing and relaxing and I can’t wait to go right back!


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