Travel Diary: the Women of Yes Way Rosé Go to Napa
Yes Way Rosé started a few summers ago when two best friends (that would be us, Nikki Huganir and Erica Blumenthal) came to the conclusion that Rosé is, well, pretty much the greatest thing ever.
A pretty, pale-pink with a crisp, dry taste, the beauty of the wine transcends the bottle: just the thought of the stuff calls to mind summer's happy vibes (or Rosé vibes as we call them). Rosé and its lighthearted, refreshing spirit has come to inspire just about everything we do, including our photoblog, travel, and line of tees and totes.
Related: Insider’s Guide to Napa Valley
After a long New York winter, we recently escaped to Napa Valley and Sonoma in search of the ultimate pink drink weekend. To plan we consulted Leslie Rosa, a sommelier whose company La Dolce Vigna plans individually curated wine tours in California and Italy. We collaborated on an itinerary and with her guidance tasted the delicious new 2014 vintages, ate at wonderful rosé-friendly restaurants, and even caught an incredible concert at a vineyard. Yes, it was as amazing as it looks. Take a look at the dreamy weekend here, as seen through our rosé-colored (and filled) glasses.
Stop and Taste the Rosés
We start the day at the Red Car Wine tasting room in Sonoma, an airy, modern space with just a touch of kitsch. The daily tasting includes its superb 2014 Rosé of Pinot Noir, with notes of white peach, wild strawberry and rose petals.
The tasting room also houses Red Car Wine’s eclectic record collection and shop, which is stocked with fun wine-themed books and sculptural jewelry designed by Padé Vavra, the wife of winery co-founder Carroll Kemp.
Pop Till You Drop
We then take in the luscious scenery and delicious bubbly at picturesque Iron Horse Vineyards in Sebastopol. We tried the vibrant Brut rosé (pictured here) and their 2011 Wedding Cuveé. The latter is a gorgeous, barely-there blush color, that, if you like to go off-registry for wedding and engagement presents, you should buy a case of and have shipped home.
Eat Your Greens, Drink Your Pinks
Next up: an epic lunch on Sonoma Plaza at The Girl & the Fig. The French-infused country fare here was filling up our instagram feed for good reason: it is divine. Pair the pre-fixe lunch with a glass of their house Provence-esque Central Coast Grenache rosé. If you need a break from wine before your next tasting, take a bottle go.
Field of Dreams
It’s time to cruise over to Scribe, the most buzzed-about vineyard on social media and a must on this trip. The brothers behind the winery are young, cool and clearly know what’s up, from the solid indie rock music drifting from their outdoor speakers, to their entire wine oeuvre, which includes a lovely, perfectly crisp Pinot Noir rosé.
Music to my Mouth
Catching a band you love in a new setting is a sure way to elevate any getaway. Check the lineup at the super chill Gundlach Bandschu Winery—we saw a mind-blowing set by Panda Bear featuring a psychedelic visual display- and watch on a grassy hill with a bottle of Tempranillo rosé. There are local food trucks on the premises, like mobile fried chicken restaurant Drums & Crumbs.
Early to Bed, Early to Rosé
At Senza Hotel, Napa Valley, a modern boutique hotel set against a working vineyard, you are likely to find a wine tasting upon check in. Take a dip in the hot tub and in the morning enjoy a full breakfast that includes Bouchon pastries.
Sunday, Rosé Sunday
We begin Day 2 at Quixote in Napa’s Stags Leap District (reservations required). Selfies are mandatory in front of the quirky and colorful winery designed by Austrian architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser, a spirited hippie who wanted to create a free flowing structure with no straight lines or right angles. Try the Petit Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, and soon-to-be-released 2014 Rosé, all in packaging as vibrant as the winery itself.
Agree to a Gris
Rosé-colored sunglasses are a style essential for a sunny visit to the tasting patio at nearby Robert Sinskey Vineyards. We take in the beautiful rose garden over a flight of their organic wines with small pairing bites courtesy of Chef Maria Helm Sinskey. We love Sinskey’s Vin Gris of Pinot Noir Rosé, but left with the crisp (white!) Abraxas, Vin de Terroir—a happy surprise for a couple of rosé heads.
Ladies Who Rosé
We sit at the bar at Northern Italian joint Cook in St. Helena for lunch (may we suggest the mussels with chorizo in a spicy tomato broth) and walk down historic Main Street to check out the boutiques and galleries. If there's time, stop into the Orin Swift tasting room for their aromatic Grenache and Syrah rosé.
Reduce, Reuse, Rosé
We then spend the afternoon at the easygoing Alexander Valley Tasting Room for the winery Medlock Ames, founded by old college friends Chris James and Ames Morison. Chill outside at the picnic tables and enjoy their sustainable small-batch wines, including a wonderfully dry Merlot rosé with berry notes, paired with Sonoma cheese and chutneys.
Say Rosé for the Camera
Swing by the local favorite Alexander Valley Bar attached to Medlock Ames for inventive seasonal cocktails and speakeasy vibes, a pleasant hiatus for the palate after a day of wine tasting. The garnishes for the drinks are grown in the garden right outside and there's a black & white photo booth that's a good time after a drink or two.
Paint the Town Rosé
We head into Healdsburg for the evening, checking out Bergamot Alley, a chill bar featuring hard to find beers and wines, before walking over to Barndiva for dinner. The restaurant is known for its regionally sourced farm-to-table cuisine, and is both elegant and rustic at the same time. The lobster risotto and filet mignon were out of this world.
Yes Way Spa Day
Our night is spent in Calistoga at Indian Springs Resort & Spa, known for its Olympic-sized mineral pool and Mud Baths and perfect for a romantic getaway or ladies trip. The rooms are so comfy you may never leave. In the morning enjoy a healthy breakfast at Sam's Social Club.
We Came, We Rosé-d, We Conquered.
After a hard two days of drinking the most beautiful wine, we kick-back with rosé polished toes (we love Kerfuffle by Butter London) in the quiet adult pool, which is kept between 82-102 degrees Fahrenheit, depending on the season. We dream about when we'll be back again to Carpe Rosé.