Napa: King of the Valley
July 12, 2011 • Posted in Napa/Sonoma
The town of Napa is the famed valley’s largest town and the county seat. With its “first chair” position as the gateway (and namesake) to Napa Valley, the town boasts not-to-be-missed restaurants, world-class wineries, street markets, art, and in this market. Pacific Union International maintains an downtown Napa real estate office.
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The Tuesday and Saturday morning Oxbow Market draws gourmands and more in search of cinnamon caps and maitake from the mushroom ladies, heirloom stone-fruit farm treats and Napa Free-Range Beef. The Friday night Chefs Market (mid May through early August beginning at 5 p.m.) is a draw for locals and visitors alike. From live music to gourmet food stands and bottled beer booths, its block party Northern California style.
For more buttoned up—but equally enticing entertainment—the Napa Valley Opera House offers a mix of performances and a touch of history with its 1880s venue.
Located in the nearby Carneros Region of the Napa Valley, di Rosa Preserve has over 200 acres of landscaped grounds and one of the country’s most intriguing emerging art collections. Protected in perpetuity under the Napa County Land Trust, di Rosa is a treasure. Up in the air, the adventure is equally enticing with Napa Valley Balloons, Inc., which has been in business nearly three decades.
Ready for some good eats? Napa has plenty of options. Angèle features French country cuisine and its locale in a historic 1890 ship’s chandlery overlooking the Napa River is a perfect spot spring, summer and fall. Saturday salsa nights at Bistro Sabor includes the hottest Salsa, Merengue, Cumbia, Bachata and Reggaeton hits going. Bounty Hunter Rare Wine & Provisions is a down to earth spot for wine lovers. On the menu? Beer-can chicken, ribs, and tangy pulled-pork sandwiches. Greg Cole is the executive chef and owner of Celadon and Cole’s Chop House, both located in historic downtown Napa, both tasty stops.
For some of the best kept Napa secrets, head up to Spring Mountain. The 25+ wineries are small, some hard to find, and many offering award-winning vintages. The mountain weather, including the region’s coolest and wettest (at an average of 37 inches a year), makes the wines more concentrated and intense. In the valley, a vineyard can often pick in one day, up on the mountain the changing weather makes for varied ripening that extends as long as a month
Of course, there are some all-star offerings right in town. Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars is home of the Cab that bested Bordeaux in the 1976 Judgment of Paris tasting. Darioush offers a memorable experience, and Domaine Carneros by Taittinger’s venue is a replica of the French Taittinger family’s 17th-century stone chateau in Champagne. Another memorable Napa moment.
Average sales price $446,581
Days on market 118
# of properties on market 569