Napa on My Mind (Part I)
• Auberge du Soleil – The stay is an amazing treat and so stimulating from a visual point of view. The décor is eclectic, the restaurant fabulous and the amazing, infinite views of the surrounding vineyards, perfection. I love the use of orange throughout, which is also one of my trademark colors. The hotel also hosts an unbelievable collection of outdoor sculptures featuring nearly 110 works by 65 California sculptors. I still don’t think there’s anything better in the valley than this hotel.
• Carneros Inn: This is my first runner up. I love the privacy of the guest houses, the way in which modern décor can be made inviting and oh, that pool at the top of the hill, wow!
• French Laundry: ok, I know, what a cliché, but really, this is the very best restaurant in the Napa Valley by far. They have very few tables and accept reservations two months in advance (basically the day that reservations are open for the date that is 60 days ahead, all the tables become booked within minutes, so making the reservation becomes a challenge too!) The menus change constantly and they cook with a lot of the ingredients that they plant in their own garden. Heaven!
• Redd: I also love this place, the décor has a very modern vibe and reminds me of Palm Springs. The excellent food is contemporary with ethnic and French touches.
• For the most gorgeous furniture, art, and home décor, the must-see store is Martin (by designer Erin Martin). Everything she has is chic and fabulous, a dream source for people who love good stuff. http://www.martinshowroom.com/
• For incredibly unique items including very original decoupage pieces, Lime Stone is an excellent source: http://www.limestonehealdsburg.com/
Enough for today! In my next post, I’ll give some recommendations about the best Napa wines that I’ve tasted and a few wineries that should not be missed.