Friday, June 13, 2008
napa, day 1
After over 2 hours of grueling bumper to bumper traffic on the freeway, we finally found ourselves in open country... wine country, the valley of the Napa, that is. Our good friends, I'll refer to them as "the Doctors," (both are residents at UCSF) had decided to tie the knot on this auspicious weekend at the Carneros Inn. The very first one of my best girl friends to get hitched! And I was a bridesmaid! (And I honestly say that without the least bit of sarcasm.)
This was my second trip to Napa/Sonoma counties, the first time, seeing as I was about 12 at the time, cannot fully recollect, save for my tipsy mother during several wine tastings. (Tipsy Mom is needless to say, greatly amusing.) This time though, was different. I had my boy by my side, and one of my best friends was throwing a blowout California-chic soiree. The landscape grew old after about an hour of driving through it- blazingly blue skies, miles and miles of golden grasses and hay, obsessive-compulsively orderly rows of young grapes, but lots of pretty cows, if you consider cows to be pretty animals. After a while, I started to ask myself, how do people live out here? I guess maybe all that good wine helps.
The rehearsal dinner had better-than-standard-rehearsal-dinner food, though I've really only been to one other such dinner in my whole life. This one reminded me of some sort of Calvin Klein ad, the men in their light linen suits and loafers, the women in their flower sundresses and floppy hats, pressed white tablecloths, and platters of colorful, grilled foodstuffs. Me, I was in my semi-loose-fitting dress, so I was all about the tray of ribs I spied on the buffet table.
It was very fresh, more pretty to look at than to actually devour. There was a caprese salad, Israeli cous-cous salad, grilled chicken, ribs, shrimp skewers, and mini cornbread. My ribs needed more sauce action, as along with pretty much everything else on my plate. More sauce! More salt! More seasoning! Still, it made a pretty photo op.
Dessert made my whole evening awesome. The trio of ice creams/sorbets included vanilla bean, coffee and strawberry sorbet. I forgot how good vanilla ice cream is when paired with a fresh fruit sorbet. It also helped that I was sharing a bowlful with my sweetie, making pink swirls and hearts in the melted stuff. Yea, we're sickly cute like that.
I almost forgot about the mini fruit tarts. Yea, those were good too. Very typical Napa wedding dessert though; the fresh peaches were a nice addition.
Then there was a delicious Cabernet that rounded off our evenings, along with more after dinner cocktails. Come to think of it, there was never a shortage of libations all weekend!
The Carneros Inn
4048 Sonoma Highway
Napa, CA 94559