Napa Valley Vacation – Day Three

Come along with me on our Napa Valley Vacation for Day Three!

Just to give you a little background on our trip, I am a lawyer by trade. But during the COVID lockdowns, I completed a wine sommelier certificate course. I am currently at Level 3 out for a total of 4 levels.

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Napa Valley Vacation – Day Three Vlog:

Vlog of our Napa Valley Vacation Day Three

Domaine Carneros

Domaine Carneros

We started the day at Domaine Carneros for bubbly and caviar. Domaine Carneros is at the south end of Napa and closest to the highway, so it can get very crowded with tour buses as the first stop off the interstate. (It gets so crowded that I refer to it as Napa’s version of Epcot…tourists as far as the eye can see.). GO EARLY!

Domaine Carneros is owned by Tattinger and predominantly features sparkling wine. Just a reminder: it can only be referred to as “champagne” if the wine is produced in the Champagne region of France…and produced according to set methods. Indeed, at least one American city’s “Champagne Week” recently received a cease-and-desist letter for using the term “Champagne” when not all of the sparkling wines features in the event were produced in the Champagne region of France. True Story.

We opted for a tasting flight of California sparkling wines paired with a sampling of caviar and patê. In my book, this beats any brunch, any time, any where. Elegant and satisfying. Learn more about Domaine Carneros on TripAdvisor.

This year’s visit to Joseph Phelps.

Joseph Phelps Vineyards

We skipped lunch and headed to one of the most stunning views in all of Napa Valley: Joseph Phelps Vineyards in Saint Helena. The view is absolutely breathtaking…and so is the wine. While the flagship Insignia brand is actually my least favorite bottle from the vineyard, I was overjoyed to hear that Joseph Phelps had brought back its Rhône-style 2021 Vin du Mistral blend which mimics my favorite Chateauneuf-du-Pape wines (“wine of the Pope”) from France. Available for one year only, I left with three bottles…in my new wine suitcase I purchased on site with the Joseph Phelps logo.

And the view at Joseph Phelps? Even if the wines were garbage (which they are far from), the view would be worth the stop. Romantic and breathtaking every time we visit.

Also of note: our sommelier was from Mexico City and TONS of fun with a clever sense of humor. We will ask for him every time we visit now. Learn more about Joseph Phelps Vineyards on TripAdvisor.

Our visit to Joseph Phelps in 2019.

The architecture and decor at The Prisoner Wine Company continues the theme of the label artwork.

The Prisoner Wine Company

Next, we proceeded to The Prisoner Wine Company. The Prisoner just joined us at ShopLTK so I wanted to see the property for myself. If you aren’t familiar with this bottle, the label artwork is inspired by a famous etching by Francisco Goya entitled Le Petit Prisonnier. As the winemaker once remarked that he was “a prisoner to winemaking”, the painting seemed appropriate for the wine. The architecture and decor at The Prisoner Wine Company continues the theme from the famous Goya rendering.

We opted for a Sauvignon Blanc and Oyster pairing in a private cabana at The Prisoner. The oysters and wine were delightful, but I was captivated by a bottle available only through the wine club: a red blend called Sliver. The bottle features a sliver of the wine barrel on the bottle instead of a printed label. I can’t wait to take this bottle home in my new wine suitcase. Learn more about The Prisoner Wine Company on Trip Advisor.

Sauvignon Blanc and Oyster Tasting at The Prisoner Wine Company
2021 Sliver Red Wine Blend is exclusive and only available to wine club members.

And then there was dinner…

Day Three’s restaurant came highly recommended from everyone we spoke to…but I won’t be recommending it to you. An Italian restaurant with an impeccable reputation, I was disappointed with the table service and the food was mediocre. I won’t be recommending this establishment to anyone else…but you can find the reviews of others here on TripAdvisor.

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