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March 02, 2010

Are you really out of chocolate eclairs?

The innkeeper of the establishment where Mr. A and I ended up staying gave us a welcome envelope with a bunch of freebies and two-for-one tastings, which we used for the rest of the weekend. We were also informed that although we got a discount, we wouldn't be treated any differently from other guests. Quality and kindness, through and through.

Which inn, you ask?

I promised I would not mention its name, because the discount is supposed to stay under wraps, but in the future I will find ways to get the word out about what a great place it is. As for how I chose: I ended up going with the first person who replied. This seemed liked one of several fair approaches. Another alternative I considered was to choose who seemed to most need the business, but that was hard to tell. This establishment appeared to have more than one open room, and was quick to reply. Plus it really was adorable. Those were reasons enough for me.

Saturday, we hit the vineyards with a couple of Mr. A's friends from Santa Rosa. We decided to start from north to south and try any place along the way that seemed interesting.

We lucked out majorly at Vincent Arroyo, near Calistoga, since they were holding their annual barrel party that very day. They had opened up about 10 huge barrels and were piping splashes into people's glasses using a cool glass contraption called a "thief." That was some yummy stuff.

Next we hit up Raymond, where I totally dug the merlot. It was really yummy, too.

We tried one more wine at a shop in St. Helena that was giving out free samples, which was less yummy but still pretty damn yummy.

The verdict: I thought they were all good.

(You can tell what a wine connaisseur I am. My vocabulary includes "yummy" and "mmm." I'm trying to get more articulate, and more discerning, but for now I'm an easy sell!)

After the wine sampling, we stopped at Bouchon, a bakery in Yountville, to pick up some sweets for the kids of a family we were going to have dinner with. I spotted a tray full of coffee eclairs, and next to it, an empty tray labeled "chocolate eclair."

After about 20 minutes in line (there was quite a crowd), it was our turn.

"Hi! Do you have any more chocolate eclairs?" I asked.

"All we have is what's out there, sorry."

"It's not like you have a secret stash in the back? Darn. Ok!"

"Actually, lemme check. There's a chance."

She disappeared and returned victorious. "Found one!!"

Did I mention I am moving to Napa? Seriously. Why doesn't the whole world just move to Napa?

So. Beautiful.

So... YUMMY.

[images via this blog and the world according to erin]
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