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The Food of Napa Valley

September 07, 2016
Calvin and Hobbes. Tailgating and barbecue. The Chicago Cubs and “we’ll get ‘em next season.” Some pairings just make sense. The art of matching gets taken to a whole new level in wine-centric destinations; sommeliers have made whole careers out of perfecting suggestions for pairing wine with food.

Napa Valley is one of our most popular Destinations of Excellence®, and the first reason that springs to mind is, of course, the area’s wineries. Some of the best American vinos are made here, and a visitor can spend multiple trips to Napa and still not run out of new tasting rooms to visit. But those in the know also understand that the wine capital of America has a thriving culinary scene, one to match the highs of its bottled treats and that very clearly holds up its end in any “food and wine” pairing.

With the prevalence of alcohol in the Napa culture, it should be no surprise that there are plenty of ways to get around the valley sans auto. And while walking and bicycling around is a fun way to see everything up close, there’s a major drawback: It’s hard to eat while walking, and nearly impossible to do so while on a bike. That’s where the Napa Valley Wine Train comes in, and with it a three-course gourmet meal. Enjoy roasted beef tenderloin, pork tenderloin or even a “catch of the day” fish entrée en route to the Grgich Hills Estates, for a private tour and tasting. There’s even a dessert course for the ride home, for those whom have worked up an appetite seeing the Grgich grounds.

Just down the road at Saint Helena, the Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch is the home of chef Timothy Mosblech, recognized by California Home and Design magazine as one of wine country’s “best kept secrets.” His Chef’s Table (a component of our “Napa Valley’s Perfect Blend of Indulgences” package) lunch includes a plethora of farm-to-table dishes – Long Meadow Ranch is one of a handful of wineries that also grow their own grub – paired with their flavor profile wine siblings. And as recognized as Long Meadow is for its wine, don’t miss out on its award-winning olive oil, also available.

Unfortunately, Chef Mosblech won’t fit in your donor’s carry-on luggage, which means your supporter will have to leave behind the cuisine of Napa Valley upon departure. But they can learn how to recreate some of Northern California’s magic at home with the “Raise Your Glass and Say Cheers to Napa” trip. Donors can choose to take a class from an expert chef, including seasonal ingredients, expert cooking techniques and, crucially, what wines to pair with their new recipes. It’s a perfect way to make sure that your supporters return from their trip with something to share – because getting them to give up one of their new bottles of wine might be difficult.