Welcome back to FaF annnnnnd to your next weekend getaway: Napa Valley, and a little bit of San Francisco + LA. This was the perfect girls weekend filled with the yummiest food and wine.
Here’s a detailed look at all of our eats and drinks as well as fun stops and shops throughout the weekend.
*** There is a food + drink roundup at the bottom of the post to sum up our delicious finds ***
We set out for SF in my little Fiat 500 waaay too late from Newport and hit MAJOR LA traffic. We spent 3 hours basically just sitting… bad planning on my part. But we started out with some Starbucks and good tunes and embraced the roadtrip vibes.
We stopped at In ‘n’ Out for lunch because Kelsie had never had it (shocker, I know) and really, what roadtrip is complete without a double burger?
Since we got such a late start because of traffic, we were racing the sun to SF to see the Golden Gate Bridge and the Painted Ladies. We (finallllllllly) got to SF as the sun was beginning to set which actually set us up for some really great photos and some breathtaking views.
The Golden Gate Bridge was truly a dream and the Painted Ladies were a quick check off of the bucket list. I wish we had had more sunlight in SF but that just gives me an excuse to head back up and explore more! We were starving after our mini self-guided tour and quickly found a restaurant around the Painted Ladies to recharge and fuel up for the semi-short drive to Napa. We had Mr. Holmes Bakehouse on our “Must Do” list for the trip but they, as many bakeries do, closed at 2 PM!!!! So thanks to LA traffic, no trendy + basic photo telling the world that “I got baked in San Francisco”.
We found refuge (and sangria) in a dimly lit but super cool bar called Fly Bar + Restaurant. It was absolutely DIVINE. The best baked brie and dairy-free greek pizza. However, as I am researching now, it appears that yelpers have deemed the restaurant and bar “permanently closed”. Interesting…
After dinner + drinks, Kelsie found the CUTEST natural frozen yogurt shop called Loving Cup. Super cute interior and and amazing set up. You can choose your flavor of yogurt base (they have dairy free, hollllaaaaa) and then choose toppings that they can mix in, kinda like a milkshake. I got vanilla with cookie dough and oreo. Yum. After the yogurt shop, we finally had enough gumption to complete the last leg of the journey to Napa.
Side note: I have been wanting to wear a beanie for forever, I have no idea why, and I decided that this was the trip and SF was the place for it to happen. Looking back, I remember why I never wore beanies, because my I have the BIGGEST and weirdest shaped head in all of the universe. BUT, I can now have peace with my inner need for a beanie photo. Annnyywayssssss…
We arrived at our Airbnb and holy s!%$. Literally the cutest interior and bedding and cookware and details and EVERYTHING. I mean even down to the subway tile in the shower. I took pictures of every inch of that place but I narrowed it down and chose my favorites for this post. The location was spectacular, close to everything. AND you can actually see the Napa Valley Wine Train from the backyard.
After a full and much needed nights sleep, we were energized and ready for a long day of wine and food. Such a hard life… We started out at The Boon Fly Cafe which was absolutely divine. The service was amazing and our food was spectacular. And they kept the coffee refills coming. I also bought a mug. This was not the only mug I bought on this trip. I went to wine country and bought mugs, not wine. I have a problem.
TIP: Go to Napa during the off-season, aka winter. The vineyards aren’t in bloom, sure. But accommodations are cheaper and reservations are simply not necessary. We went everywhere with no reservations, which normally would have been a rookie mistake (even though we knew we were supposed to have them), but we lucked out because it was the off-season, and got into a few places that we normally would not have been able to sans reservation.
After breakfast, you need dessert, right? We stopped by the cutest bakery called Buttercream Bakery. We were immediately drawn in by its bright pink and white stripes covering the outside of the building. It was a little bit loud, but it worked. They had any donut we could imagine and for a lovely, inexpensive price.
After we got back from breakfast + donuts, it was time to change and head out to our first winery. Our Ubers were amazzzzing the whole trip. It was a little pricey as some wineries were further than others, but overall worth it because the Uber drivers were basically free tour guides with so much knowledge about the area and when to go and where. It was so great.
Our first stop was Domaine Chandon and we were absolutely smitten. The grounds were spectacular as was the view. I chose the sparkling flight and she chose a flat and we were both in heaven.
WINERY FUN FACT: Every place we went offered us 1-2 extra tastes for free. Some were personalized after chatting with us and getting to know our tastes and others were their personal favorites. So, you are paying (and tipping) for your tasting flight but also paying for incredible knowledge from professional wine connoisseurs, AND bonus tastes.
OTK boots: Steve Madden
Oversized sweater dress: Nordstrom brand
Necklace: Cheeky Peach
Purse: Nordstrom brand
Our second stop was Stag’s Leap. We would not have gone here if it wasn’t for one of our phenomenal Uber drivers and boy are we thankful.
NAPA VALLEY SCHEDULING FACTS: So, if you look at a map of the valley, wine country extends much farther North than Napa City, which is basically the southernmost point of the valley. We were staying in Napa City and did not want to Uber too far North because of crazy pricing and also because there were amazing vineyards and sights right near us. Our first stop (Domaine Chandon) was the furthest North and we worked our way back down towards our Airbnb. I found as we were researching Napa, that there wasn’t as much information as we thought there would be. We felt like we went into it a little bit blind, but that helped us have flexibility for suggestions and exploration.
Stag’s Leap was beautiful and the priciest place we visited. The wine was unbelievable and Kels and I both favored the $260 bottle. Oh how I love my expensive taste… not. But the venue was beautiful and we felt welcomed and educated as we were only on our second stop as Napa newbies.
Our third and final stop of the day was at Domaine Carneros. The few blogs and Pinterest posts that we found all mentioned this one, and we know why. The beautiful Chateau stood on top of an incredible hill looking out onto miles and miles of vineyards. We got there at sundown, which wasn’t as great for photos, but looked breathtaking in person. We snapped some photos and headed in. This was also one of the places we would not have been able to visit without a reservation normally. This winery was a little bit different than the others as we were seated at a table and had more of a restaurant vibe. We had a menu (as the other places did) but a waiter of sorts greeted us and took our orders. We got cheese and meat pairings because, why not? It was scrumptious and also pretty to look at.
After our last stop, we were pooped. We arrived back at our Airbnb and immediately plugged our phones in and passed out. I was stuffed but Kels had major need for dinner so we found ourselves at a cute sushi place in downtown Napa called Eiko’s. She got a roll and ate it all up and I got one to go. Sushi in my PJs while comfy in bed sounded much to good to pass up. We were also parched (ironic because of how much wine we drank) so we stopped at 7-11 (glamorous) near our Airbnb and bought huge ass water bottles. Much needed. We rested and chatted then headed to bed for our next full day.
After packing up and “checking out” of our Airbnb, we started out the day with breakfast again, Kels makes me a breakfast person, and WOWWWWW we picked the perfect place. An incredible aesthetically pleasing coffee shop + eatery called Southside Cafe had the most delicious breakfast choices and yummy coffee. Great interior and an awesome porch, if it hadn’t been freezing cold.
We didn’t have a winery in mind or a reservation (lol we should have learned) so I was calling around places and seeing what their hours and reservation options were. A lot of places were closed or didn’t have any open reservations because it was a Saturday. But looking back, we are SO GRATEFUL because we would have never found this gem of a winery + vineyard. Starmont Winery & Vineyard was our fourth and final winery visit and we wanted to make the absolute most of it. Starmont was quiet, calm, and perfectly lit as we walked in. They were welcoming and showed us to a table (white interior makes my heart happy) where we had a great view of the vineyards and the pretty courtyard. The wine was super tasty AND we could actually afford a bottle here! However, I of course bought a mug instead. Yes, I still have a problem.
We were REALLLY hoping to go on a tour of one of the wineries, but Starmont doesn’t offer tours and we were too late/too rushed the day before to experience tours at the other stops. That is definitely something we will have to go back to do.
We were thankfully able to walk around and explore the vineyards and that led to a mini shoot with Kelsie! At some of the other wineries, we did not feel like exploring was appropriate, but we asked our server and he said to go ahead so we walked around (in the mud) to our hearts content!
Kelsie’s Outfit Details:
Sweater & Bell Bottoms: Free People
Hat: Forever 21 (I know, shocking)
Shirt: Nordstrom brand
Necklace: On Cloud 9
After this winery, we were headed back to SoCal. We were stopping in Santa Monica for the night so I took Kels to 3rd Street Promenade because sometimes you just gotta do touristy things when your friends come to town. We shopped at Nordstrom and Urban Outfitters and picked up last minute outfit details for the night. We ate at a super yummy restaurant called Bruxie that had chicken and waffles and BLT and waffles and pretty much anything with waffles. Kels got a BLT waffle sandwich and I was so full/so done with eating fried food that I got a grilled chicken salad with goat cheese. Delicious.
Our knowledgeable and super cool LA host, Robbie ( he’s single, ladies (; ), took us to a few different bars but most had lines so we ended up at The Victorian, which I really wanted to go to during the day because it looked very cute on the outside. It was a fun venue with lots of music and people. We danced and drank the night away and stayed up waaaaay to late.
The next morning we amazingly woke up and made check out in time (miracles do happen) and headed to breakfast! I have a major thing for Alfred Coffee and I had been wanting to try their shop with Yeastie Boys Bagels so we headed over to Melrose. Yummy coffee and even better than I could have imagined bagels. We nursed our hangovers and nursed our coffee and had a relaxing breakfast, chatting and reminiscing on the night.
We walked around Melrose a bit and Kels made some fun purchases like this Rag & Bone tee that I made her change in to because I wanted some photos of her in it. She’s a great sport (: Kelsie was feelin’ the Beverly Hills tour guide and I am never one to complain about window shopping at Saint Laurent. So we headed over to Rodeo Drive and walked around and took in all of the very interesting tourists and expensive clothing, jewelry, and shoes. We snapped some photos and decided it was time to head back to Newport. We were pretty exhausted and spent from our weekend.
We got pizza from a local Newport shop when we got home and passed out on the couch. It was a much needed night in!! When we woke up, we felt rested and energized (at least, enough to get food) so we headed to the Newport pier, which has become one of my favorite places to be, and to Dory Deli which has become my absolute favorite stop for breakfast burritos and coffee. Always coffee. We ate our yummy food (get the Boardwalk burrito. You will be tempted to get the Yoga Pants burrito, but trust me, try the Boardwalk) and soaked up some sun. Afterwards we sat our butts in the sand and watched surfers while talking about how the next time she comes, we were going to learn. I’m not sure if we are even capable… updates will be given.
Later that day I drove her to the airport and we said our goodbyes and WOW what a whirlwind of a weekend. It was so much fun driving up and down CA with my bff and I can’t wait for more adventures!
If you loved this post or have any suggestions for when we head back up north, please leave them in the comments! I love hearing feedback.
Make sure to check out the food + drink roundup at the bottom, it is a great guide to Napa!!
Winery + Eatery Roundup
In n Out
Get the 3×3 with animal style fries if you’re feeling bold.
Fly Bar + Restaurant – San Francisco
1085 Sutter St.
San Francisco, CA 94109
Yummiest pizza and baked brie but now, according to Google, permanently closed????
Loving Cup – San Francisco
535 Octavia St.
San Francisco, CA 94102
To die for frozen yogurt with optional ingredients mixed in.
Boon Fly Cafe – Napa
4048 Sonoma Hwy.
Napa, CA 94559
Green eggs and ham. And coffee. Need I say more?
Buttercream Bakery + Restaurant – Napa
2297 Jefferson St.
Napa, CA 94559
Perfect donuts for any desired insta photo.
Domaine Chandon – Yountville
1 California Drive
Yountville, CA 94599
Beautiful vineyards and tasty wines.
Stag’s Leap – Napa
6150 Silverado Trail
Napa, CA 94558
A little on the pricier side, but worth every sip of the tasting of the $260 bottle.
Domaine Carneros – Napa
1240 Duhig Rd.
Napa, CA 94559
Cheese pairings with a sparkling wine fleet, please.
Eiko’s – Napa
1385 Napa Town Center
Napa, CA 94559
Need sushi in Napa? Go here.
Southside Cafe – Napa
2770 Old Sonoma Road
Napa, CA 94558
Cute and trendy, with delicious biscuits and gravy with coffee to go.
Starmont Winery + Vineyard – Napa
1451 Stanly Lane
Napa, CA 94559
Probably our favorite winery. Chill, beautiful, natural light, and bottles of wine we could actually afford to take home.
Bruxie – Santa Monica
Third Street Promenade
Santa Monica, CA 90401
Perfect for your southern chicken and waffles cravings. If you get those.
Alfred Coffe + Yeastie Boys Bagel – West Hollywood
8509 Melrose Avenue
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Insta worthy bagels and coffee you will want to refill multiple times. If only.
Pure Pressed Juice – Los Angeles
10844 West Olympic Blvd.
@ Westwood Blvd.,
Los Angeles, CA 90064
THE BEST FRESH PRESSED JUICE I HAVE HAD WHILE BEING IN CALIFORNIA. And I drink a lot of juice.
Dory Deli – Newport Beach
2108 34th West Oceanfront
Newport Beach, CA 92663
THE BEST BREAKFAST BURRITOS I HAVE EVER TASTED. Get the Boardwalk burrito, you will not regret it. And also coffee. Because coffee is important.
All photos not of me, were taken by me. @MadisonCrowleyPhotography on Instagram for more.