How the other half drinks

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The last stop on our trip was to visit our friends The Cyclones at their new digs in Napa. We were greeted by this lovely picture painted for us by Miss Isabella:

(I’m pretty sure she had assistance with the lettering, but one never knows with the kiddos… ) After our time with the twins, Isabella seemed so big. Luckily, we were much more acclimated to babies and better prepared for all of her energy.

We’d initially expected to have the day to ourselves and had planned to do a big bike ride, but Jake had taken the day off from work to hang out with us. Unfortunately, Darcy didn’t have that luxury, but we were planning to go visit her at her winery later in the day. First, we had a great breakfast at a local diner and wandered through their lovely local market:

The boys drink coffee and wait patiently for me to take more pictures:

Afterward, we headed over to Darcy’s winery. This is her new office:

With this view:

And the lady herself, hard at work as usual:

She did take a break to take us on an amazing tour of the winery. We got to see the cave:

Which had a really cool facade on the outside:

But is, in fact, an actual cave:

The middle of the cave is an actual event space and has a Foucault pendulum in the center, which was way cool. It was too dark to get a picture of that, but I did get a cool picture of T taking pictures:

After that, we headed over to the tasting room:

We had a great time tasting some amazing wines with a very knowledgeable gentleman who guided us through the tasting. I learned a lot from him and Darcy. Afterward, we headed over to Darcy’s other brand which was a more reasonable price point for us mere mortals. The woman who ran our tasting there treated us like royalty. She even took us into their barrel room, which was pretty cool:

These barrels contain wines from around the Napa valley, with info on their soil/regional qualities. They use the room to hold events where you learn about the various barrels and how to blend them into your own personal bottle of wine. We got to taste from the various barrels, which was very cool.

On the way out, I had to photograph the olive trees.

I grew up with olive trees and was very entertained by the winery lady’s stories about having to stop patrons from eating the olives. (I’d done that as a child and had pretty much traumatized myself from ever wanting to eat an olive again.) They are still very pretty trees though…

T was pretty buzzed after all of the drinking, so we headed up to a fancy spa in Calistoga for lunch: Solage. It was a very pretty spot for lunch and the food was delicious (though their gorgeous empty pool taunted me throughout the meal.) The best dish was surprisingly T’s tofu salad. I don’t know what they did with that tofu, but it was RIDICULOUS. (T even asked for the recipe, but they either didn’t have one or wouldn’t release it.)

Then we headed back to the Cyclones place to chill out for a bit. (It’s amazing how tiring wine tasting and lunching can be. I don’t know how the rich do it!)

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