Napa's an amazing chill bachelorette destination (especially for a chill bride who loves wine, like Erin!) We worked with Erin's maid of honor, Amanda, to coordinate all the details. Hear about the weekend from Amanda's perspective:
About the group?
There were seven of us, a perfect cross-section of Erin’s life: home/high school, college, law school, and post-college friends, and at every life stage (from single to married with a baby.) All Southern and mostly Texan (and all proud of that!) We worked with Tisha to incorporate a few Texas elements into the weekend to reflect Erin’s Houston roots, primarily in the shopping lists for the meals we planned to cook at home.
It was an easy choice – Napa is Erin’s jam. She’s been multiple times, and loves it there. It was also a natural extension of her regular Monday night wine tastings + trashy TV law school study breaks.
Where we stayed:
Tisha scoured through short-term VRBO rentals to find perfect house (with plenty of room, a great kitchen, and a pool!) in St. Helena, a beautiful town in Napa.
What it cost:
We discussed budget early on and Tisha worked to make sure the weekend was both full of amazing things and within that range. This long weekend cost ~$1,140 (excluding flights) per person for four days and three nights.
- Housing: $350/ person
- Car rental and gas: $150
- Limo: $150
- Meals out (plus coffee, ice cream, etc.): $200
- Tastings (7 over 2 days): $70
- Bike tour: $170
- Groceries: $50
What we did:
- Mid-day: A few girls got there early and picked up groceries and drinks. They also decorated the house with streamers and balloons (including a balloon dress outside!)
- 8pm: Drove to dinner at Market in St. Helena. Delicious light American eats and excellent wine, just like Erin was hoping for.
- 8am: Early breakfast of English muffins and eggs (doused in hot sauce, obviously. Texas!)
- 9:30am: Limo pick-up for winery tour through National Limo. Their package came with champagne and water (very necessary), and our driver was great. The whole day of wine tasting had been booked so we had a seamless experience, a great mix of small vineyards and foodie places to eat, as we'd wanted to do.
- 10am: Duckhorn. A boutique, family-oriented vineyard with a seated tasting. They were knowledgeable and shared interesting facts about the wine (along with a few extra tastings!)
- 11:30am: Longmeadow. Another beautiful vineyard/ranch. Here we did a both a red and white tasting (we particularly remember a good buttery sauv blanc), along with an olive oil tasting (yum!)
- 12:15pm: Lunch at Farmstead at Longmeadow. This was fantastic – a super dining experience. We had a reserved table outside. The food was very fresh and tasty, not too heavy (although we definitely tried the giant mac and cheese) but enough to keep us going through a long day of wine tastings.
- 2:00pm: Silver Oak. Absolutely beautiful property, good wine, and we got a free glass.!
- 3:30pm: Mumm Napa. Loved this place. It had outdoor seating and a sparkling wine tasting, which was a perfect way to wrap up the day. Other highlights: a non-alcoholic wine (chosen since one of the girls attending was pregnant), a red sparkling wine (awesome!). This winery was especially important for us to include since Erin was serving their wine at her wedding.
- 5pm: Time to rest before dinner!
- 8:30pm: Dinner at Tra Vigne. Excellent food (particularly the non-veg options), a wonderful, funny waitress, and a beautiful outdoor seating area full of strung-up lights.
- 8am: Early breakfast
- 9:30am: Headed out for Napa Valley Bike tour (note: they also have an office in Sonoma). Tisha worked to arrange this so that we got our own private tour (usually only available for parties of 8 or more). We gave some suggestions and then they designed the final route. Teresa, our tour guide, filled us in on facts about wine and grape growing (like why there always roses planted near the grapes – not just for decoration!) and helped us find some special off-the-menu deals. Another bonus: there was a van to hold the wine (and anyone who got tired or couldn't bike. This meant that even our pregnant friend could participate!)
- 10:45am: Biked for about an hour to Stags Leap. Loved the wine there (we bought a LOT), and great outside tasting under umbrellas where we could fully enjoy the lovely view.
- 12:30pm: A short ten minute bike ride took us to Clos Du Val, where they had cabana-type areas set up for the tastings. Along with the wine, we picked up some snacks (wine filled truffles!). We had lunch there arranged by the bike company – a full spread from a local upscale sandwich place.
- 2:30pm: Another ten minute ride or so to our last stop at Silenus, which we also really enjoyed, particularly our (extremely funny) tasting guide and our off-the-menu dry rose!
- 4pm – late: Back to the house for some classic Texas appetizers (Velveeta and Ro-Tel, guac) homemade fajitas, and Erin's lingerie party and games.
- Morning: Time to return to reality! We enjoyed one last meal at Napa Farms Market in the airport before boarding flights home.