Our Bloggers in Napa Valley trip left off with the cocktail party with friends at Mercantile Social, the patio bar and restaurant at Andaz Napa. After a restful night’s sleep in our luxurious rooms, we got ready for our wine tasting tour with my friend, Mike Johnson of Napa Valley Tours and Transportation.
Mike picked us up in front of Andaz in a beautiful black Suburban. Mike, who also goes by “Napa Chauffeur”, and I met through a shared love of photography and wine country. Follow his gorgeous gallery of photos on Instagram.
Off we went to our first appointment!
We started our day off by tasting sparkling wine in the morning sunshine on the terrace of the majestic Domaine Carneros, which is modeled after the historic 18th-century Château de la Marquetterie owned by Champagne Taittinger in Reims, France.
Waiting for us at the top of the stairs was my friend and business associate, Charlotte Milan, founder and president of C.Milan Communications, a public relations and media firm in San Francisco. Domaine Carneros is her client and she thought a private tasting would be the ideal way to kick off our day of winery tours. She was right!
We began with a tour of the luxurious wine club members’ terrace.
Stacey Meyer, the Events Manager at Domaine Carneros also showed us to the private events rooms where rehearsal dinners, corporate events and the like take place. It’s such a stunning facility, both indoors and out, to hold a special event.
After our tour, we were directed to our table where we would get started learning about and tasting various wines from Domaine Carneros. Walking us through the tasting was Sean Donaghue, who had seemingly endless knowledge about sparkling wines.
It’s hard to choose a favorite but if I had to, it would be Le Rêve.
Along with all of our wines, we shared plates of local cheeses, dried fruits, nuts and bread. We also made sure to hydrate and often, one of my ten wine tasting tips.
After our sparkling wine tasting, we moved on to their Pinot Noir wines and were joined by Pinot Noir winemaker for Domaine Carneros, TJ Evans. His passion for Pinot is palpable! He shared with us his love for Pinot and explained the process of winemaking from the vineyard to the table.
We not only tasted world-class sparking wines and Pinot Noir while enjoying picture-perfect views, we learned a good deal, too. And of course, we had a fantastic time during the entire event.
Before we got on our way to the next appointment, Sean offered to let us pose with some giant bottles of Domaine Carneros. What a terrific jumpstart to our day of visiting wineries!
This is not my first time visiting or writing about Domaine Carneros, which is part of the Taittinger family of wineries from France. Last year, Charlotte invited my husband and I for a tasting which I wrote about on Skimbaco Lifestyle.
More recently, I participated in a new program developed by Charlotte Milan and C. Milan Communications for Domaine Carneros that incorporates fitness, wellness and wine! Doesn’t that sound fun?
Vinyasa in the Vineyards is an incredible experience for lovers of wine, yoga and nature. Imagine starting your morning off with a certified yoga instructor leading you through an invigorating session of flow yoga al fresco.
You’ll take in stunning views of neighboring Di Rosa preserve and rolling vineyards for as far as the eye can see while perfecting your sun salutations.
After your yoga experience, celebrate feeling great with a flute of organic bubbles and a cool-down walk through the vineyards with a Senior Wine Educator before sitting down to a sparkling wine brunch. You may also request to add an hour-long wine education seminar and tasting led by sommelier Christie Dufault to your experience.
San Francisco Bay Area news station, KTVU was there to film our Vinyasa in the Vineyards event. You can watch the video below. You don’t need to be skilled at the practice of yoga to take enjoy the experience. It’s for all levels from beginner and up.
For more information about Domaine Carneros Winery, visit their website and to get details about Vinyasa in the Vineyards call 707-257-0101, ext. 127.
And for your next visit to Napa Valley wineries, consider hiring Mike Johnson, the “Napa Chauffeur”. He can be contacted via Napa Valley Tours and Transportation.
I want to thank Charlotte Milan and her team for arranging our tasting at Domaine Carneros. Thank you also to the staff at Domaine Carneros for their kind hospitality. And many thanks to my friend Mike Johnson who not only got us from place to place in a timely and safe manner but kept our group hydrated and happy! He also used his wonderful photography skills to capture our fantastic day. Finally, I want to publicly thank my husband, Bill and my stepdaughter,Tori for taking time out of their very busy schedules to take photos.
I am so grateful for having such supportive, dynamic, generous and kind people in my life.
Make it a rich day!
Disclosures: Both the yoga and wine tasting experiences at Domaine Carneros were complimentary. Our chauffeured tour of Napa Valley with Mike Johnson via Napa Valley Tours and Transportation was also complimentary. All opinions expressed here are my own, as always.