Last week on my birthday, we did one of my favorite wine country rides. We parked in Yountville, headed out on Yount St. to Yount Mill Rd., which we followed until we came out on Hwy. 29. Then we rode the shoulder of 29 to the newly reopened Oakville Grocery, where we stopped and enjoyed coffee in the garden. Weather-wise, the day was perfect.
After coffee, we headed up Oakville Crossroad toward the Silverado Trail. Although the road is narrow at the bridge crossing over the Napa River, the shoulder is wide enough for comfortable riding on this road, and the traffic is not too heavy. When the Groth Winery loomed up on the left side of the road, it was such an arresting sight that we decided to take a little detour and ride around it. My husband remarked that the building looks as though mass might be held there on Sundays.
Continuing up Oakville Crossroad, we turned right when we arrived at the Silverado Trail, which we followed until we again made a right turn, this time on to Yountville Crossroad. The scenery along both Oakville and Yountville Crossroads is pastoral and beautiful, mostly vineyards dotted with architecturally imposing wineries.
We ate lunch at Michael Chiarello’s Napa Style on my birthday, and then on Sunday after the Joshua Bell concert, we ate at Bottega. The casual restaurant in the store is good, and I love the pretty patio under the olive trees. But Bottega is a memorable place to eat even in this land of culinary excellence.
By the way, I am pleased with my Nantucket bike basket, which is handy for carrying small things when I do not want to attach panniers. And it provides a place for my purse when our dining plans include a place where my floppy backpack seems too casual.