Where Relaxation Flows like Wine – Napa: Final Part 3

The next day followed the same routine of meandering a variety of harvested vineyards and their wineries. Our favorite was Chimney Rock for their cozy atmosphere and wine worthy of sharing with friends back home, so a couple bottles made it into Brian’s backpack. That night’s anticipated dinner left me giddy all day as we had reservations at one of my preferred restaurants, which summons my taste buds to recall my days in Lyon, France.

At Bistro Jeanty, we savored quenelles (pasta in a lobster sauce), boeuf bourguignon and soupe à l’oignon. The ambiance mirrored a classic French eatery with its chalkboard menus and vintage advertisements as decor. The tables were draped in crisp white tablecloths and matching simple dishes to allow the chef’s craft to command attention. The menu dictated a Parisian dinner. The only sour note was the chilly service, arguably très French. Making us feel cheap for ordering their house wine, I was slightly annoyed, but gave him real reason for frustration when we drank about three quarters of the decanter; only for me to accidently break it and my glass! My glee from the meal evoked my over zealous hand gestures, knocking it down with a loud crash to the floor. Deciding to wrap up dinner quickly, after a swift departure we slowly strolled the town after. Regardless of the slightly frigid service, their savory fare will forever summon a visit.

I won’t tease you with yet another day of overly relaxing wine tasting, bike riding and ambrosial food and wine that set both our palates and size of our rears soaring. Hopefully the turning of the pedals from our bicycling counteracted the butter and vino consumed. The last day of touring proved more cumbersome on the bike as I was determined to wear a skirt. As the wind picked up I flashed far too many oncoming drivers than I care to mention, but the silver lining was that I learned to ride almost one handed, so as to use the other to hold down my skirt.

Our last day arrived far too quickly, but we thought a perfect way to say au revoir was to roam Yountville and experience walking from boutiques to tasting rooms. We lunched at Redd Wood, triggering a sudden love for brussel sprouts in discovering their bountiful flavor when paired with burrata cheese, smoked bacon and apples. We then perused the quaint shops, offering ample décor to transform one’s home into a wine cellar. Our high note of the day – and trip, landed in a most memorable winery: Jessup Cellars in central Yountville.

Their 2012 Zinfandel stole the show with its plum forward flavor. Allowing time for it to breathe before it coated our mouths, it offered a wine experience unlike any other. I reveled in the complexity of the flavors, yet its ease to drink. In addition, the staff was inviting and relaxed, acquiescing for several tastings of the most delectable wine. There was zero pressure, encouraging us to just talk wine. I could have bought a case, or three, but having already purchased one $75 bottle earlier in the trip and many others to show up our modest wine collection back home, we limited Jessup Cellars collection to only one bottle: the 2012 Zinfandel of course. It’s still lying on its side, next to our other lush samplings from Napa, each cherished and waiting for a special occasion to be uncorked.

Yountville will forever be our perfect escape from reality. Much like the wine in Napa, relaxation comes in copious amounts, luring us back for more. Cheers to our newly acquired bottles for their flavor and memories held within.

P.S. The kids loved the puppy!




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