Wine Tastings, Picnics and More…Our Trip to Napa

If we hadn’t gone to The French Laundry and we’d just gone to Napa we still would’ve had a most memorable trip.

The place is just obnoxiously beautiful. If you could bottle beauty and sell it, you could do a lot worse than to bottle Napa: with its lush hills and crisp, clear blue skies and perfectly temperate weather. To experience it more fully, we all agreed, at the car rental, that it’d make sense to pay a little more for a convertible.


To quote Vanessa Williams, I “saved the best for last.”

For the last meal of my trip, I packed my suitcase–left thank you notes for my hosts, Tohva and Raife–and drove one and a half hours to Los Gatos, where I met Pim for dinner at her boyfriend’s highly renowned restaurant, Manresa. I got a little lost on the way–missed a turn here and there–but I arrived there just in time. Pim was waiting for me and I think she could immediately sense how giddy I was. How often do you eat dinner with the chef’s girlfriend and then go, afterwards, to stay at the chef’s house? This night would certainly be unique.

My Dinner at Ad Hoc

So I have this car I rented, here in San Francisco, and on Saturday–after the farmer’s market–I wanted to put it to use. I never realized that the Napa Valley was so close to the City by the Bay and after the storm let up, and as I considered my options, I decided that I would venture out to Napa to eat at Thomas Keller’s newest (and arguably, coolest) restaurant: Ad Hoc.

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