Posted September 9, 2009 by Jamie Moore
Napa may be famous for wonderful wine, but don't miss out on the valley's other surprisingly affordable delights. Stay in Yountville (inside a rail car) and you'll be steps from mouth-watering French pastries and minutes from a multinational art collection housed in, well, an estate winery. (It is Napa after all.)
Napa Valley Railway Inn: All aboard for an off-the-beaten-track experience in this Yountville inn. Yes, you really will be sleeping in old railway carriages—all on the original track of the Napa Valley Railroad. The carriages once whisked wealthy Californians north to Calistoga's resorts, but you'll be staying put. You'll also be within walking distance of all of Yountville's attractions (including the French bakery down the street) and a short drive to Napa's wineries.
Bouchon Bakery: Thomas Keller, the culinary genius behind Yountville's The French Laundry, a famous foodie favorite, is also responsible for this bakery. But here you can get a taste of the talent for a fraction of the price. Bite into a riche chocolate bouchon, a tangy lemon tarte, or go for the gusto with a ham and cheese sandwich, Bouchon-style. You'll soon adopt Bouchon's philosophy of "eat often and with pleasure!"
The Hess Collection: In 1999, Art News named Donald Hess one of the world's top 200 collectors. See why in his soaring, light-filled 13,000-square-foot gallery. Hess' inspiration is modern art, and the gallery features visionaries such as Francis Bacon, Anselm Kiefer, and Andy Goldsworthy. And since it's housed in the Hess Winery, you might as well visit the tasting room where you can sample four wines. Complimentary tours of the winery and vineyard are offered from 10:30am to 3:30pm daily.
To search for flights and compare prices to San Francisco, which is home to Yountville’s nearest major airport, please use our price-comparison tool.(Photo: Vi Bottaro/Yountville Chamber of Commerce)
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