I ran the Napa to Sonoma half marathon on July 19th. Though this was my second half I technically consider it my first. This is because my first one I ran my senior spring semester of college and let’s just say my extra curricular activities cough drinking cough kept me from performing at my best. That and I only trained for three weeks. This time though I almost did it right. I tried to follow a three month training schedule but didn’t do as well with that either since my longest run I completed was nine miles. But that was enough! I ran this race without stopping and it was awesome! Well till the last three miles, those dragged, but the first 10 were great! Beautiful scenery and great company. I ran the Napa to Sonoma half marathon with my friend Shana, sister Kara, and brother-in-law John. If you are looking for your next (or first!) half marathon this should be it!
The obvious perk of choosing a destination such as wine country is the wine. After we crossed the finish line, caught our breath, and drank water, we were given wine glasses to start tasting. By 10 am, we had ran 13.1 miles and already tasted four different types of wine. My body was very confused.
After a few glasses of wine we realized a nap was necessary so headed back to our Airbnb. After that we picked up right where we left of; we headed to Gloria Ferrer where my sister got married for some sparking wine flights.
After our sparkling wine we headed into Napa for happy hour and had some amazing cockatils at Mercantile Social followed by dinner at Oenotri. Our bodies were very ready for rest when we got home that evening.
When we woke up the next morning I was so excited. No more running to worry about but an entire day focused around drinking wine! This was the day we had planned a wine tasting in the Russian River which is known for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. We had hired a van and had three vineyards to go to. Before that though we started the day in the Sonoma Square at the Sonoma Bakery and I had my first cronut experience. Flaky, buttery, creamy from the filling is all that comes to mind. Yes, it was good.
First stop was Thomas Georges Estates. My absolute favorite and I would say a must see! We had a tour and below are pictures of concrete eggs which are used to ferment the wine. The concrete gives the wine a different flavor than oak barrels.
The van we hired had cheese and crackers for us in between the wineries. I would say this plate was gone in about 42 seconds after this picture was taken.
The second stop was Gary Farrell Winery. Here we had a cheese pairing with each wine and a killer view. The terrace over looked the valley.
After the second stop we realized the cheese plate wasn’t enough and we needed more food; because we were hungry and we needed something to soak up the liquid. We stopped at the Oakville Grocery in Healdsburg and I got the chicken gruyere sandwich. It had rotisserie chicken, balsamic onion, pancetta, gruyere, with a dijon aioli on a sour baguette. That sandwich was the best. I thought it was maybe just the wine talking but now that I am thinking about it again it wasn’t the wine, the sandwich was just that good.
The final stop was Stryker Sonoma Winery. Nice vineyard and great view of the vines. We headed back to our place and ended up getting Mexican take out for dinner. A great way to end a wine tour day.