The Ultimate Mother – Daughter Weekend Trip to Napa

The Ultimate Mother – Daughter Weekend Trip to Napa

brown downtown tasting room

Looking for ideas for mother-daughter weekend trips? Consider the California Wine Regions!

Napa Valley, renowned for its picturesque vineyards and exquisite wines, became the backdrop for an unforgettable Mother’s Day weekend for my mom and I.

Flying in from Newark and Atlanta, respectively, we landed in San Francisco within an hour of each other. I landed first, so I picked up the car rental and met my mom at her terminal by the time she landed. It took us about an hour to drive to Sonoma County where we stayed at Hotel Centro Sonoma Wine Country (formerly Cambria Sonoma Wine Country) for the next five days (it was a long weekend of course!).

Napa Valley Itinerary

Day 1: Sonoma

Our adventure began with a visit to J Vineyards and Winery in Sonoma. We sat outside and enjoyed the stunning landscapes while tasting a selection of sparkling wines paired with gourmet cheeses.

The vibe was everything. As we sipped and laughed, it was evident that this would be the beginning of an exciting mother-daughter weekend trip. Check out our YouTube video of this trip for a visual of our shenanigans!

We ventured off to lunch at Kendall-Jackson next. We indulged in a five-course meal featuring fresh garden produce grown onsite. The knowledge and passion of our host made our lunch a truly engaging experience. Each course was paired with a delicious glass of wine that was nothing like the Kendall – Jackson I knew from our regular grocery stores!

Day 2: Downtown Napa

On our second day, we ventured into downtown Napa with a full itinerary of tastings. We began with the famous Brown Downtown, one of the few Black-owned tasting rooms in the area. Brown offers a unique perspective on California wine culture, and a lovely atmosphere with historical touches. The robust flavors and distinctive blends (along with a delicious cheese plate) made this experience memorable.

Brown Downtown

Next, we visited the California Brandy House (which is now permanently closed) to switch it up from traditional wine tastings. This was another experience that went beyond a simple pour and into the craftmanship of Brandy making. We sampled a few fine brandies and enjoyed another delicious cheese plate.

California Brandy House Tasting

FYI– The cheese plates, and charcuterie boards, at almost every tasting room were DELICIOUS. They are optional, but you should definitely add them to your tasting experience!

Next we visited Mia Carta – a collective tasting room which serves wines from a variety of wineries as opposed to just one. Many of the tasting rooms downtown are directly connected to a specific brand. Collective tasting rooms allow you to taste different brands in one sitting.

Nadine at Mia Carta Tasting Room

We ended the day with Champagne at Be Bubbly, a woman-owned tasting room with a nice indoor lounge. The owner actually saw us walking down the street and invited us over. Although it was already on our list, I was grateful for the welcoming atmosphere and relaxed vibe. It was the perfect end to a long (but fun) day of tasting.

Mom at Be Bubbly

Drink Responsibly:

I should also add that our tasting reservations were spread out pretty well. Each tasting lasts about one hour. We gave ourselves about an hour or so in between each one to wander around the Downtown Napa area and simply chill out between tastings. We didn’t want to feel rushed or tipsy.

Visit Napa

Day 3: More Tasting Rooms

We drove around a lot the next day!! This is the main perk of renting a car when visiting Napa. We visited the Korbel tasting room in the Russian River Valley which was quite a ride from where we stayed in Sonoma.

Quality time is the overall objective of mother-daughter weekend trips like this, so the long drive was well worth it! We were surrounded by miles of vineyards and beautiful natural scenery as we talked about our career gripes and the crazy people in the world.

Mom at Korbel Tasting Room

When we arrived to Korbel we were able to sample a variety of tasty California champagnes while soaking in the beauty of our surroundings. Since it was Mother’s Day weekend, there was also a market on site with local artisans, a photo booth, and additional beverages.

After checking out the market at Korbel, we hit the road for a one hour drive south to the J. Moss winery, another one of the few Black-Owned Wineries in the region.

One thing to note about J. Moss: their tasting room hours are limited and they book up fast, so make sure to research before you go. On my first visit to Napa (solo trip), I didn’t get to visit at all since they were only open on specific days.

Day 4: Mother’s Day on a Wine Trolley

On Mother’s Day, we embarked on the Sonoma Valley wine trolley tour with Lunch. This tour was a ton of fun!! It was led by a charismatic guide who entertained us with tales of the region’s rich history, past trolley riders, and just general hilarity. I booked this tour on Viator.com.

Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley

We rode around visiting charming wineries while indulging in various tastings and laughing a little louder with the group after each winery visit.

While we were riding around, we noticed a few guests dropped off and other guests cut off from drinking. My mom and I held it down from beginning to end though. My Granny Grace would be so proud. LOL!!!

Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley

We had dinner reservations after the tour, but we had no idea how full and tired we would be. We still went to dinner, but passed on the wine (hard to believe, I know) and selected light bites.

Day 5: Our Last Day

As our trip came to a close, we spent our last day reminiscing about our experiences over a sampling session at Region – another collective serving a varied selection of wine and dishes from neighboring restaurants.

We sipped our wine and laughed at the number of bottles we were having mailed to our respective homes in NJ and GA — something that we usually do when we travel abroad for the Christmas holidays.

The next morning, we slept in a bit and then hit the road for San Francisco Airport. We booked later flights to account for traffic toward San Fran. We were so glad we did because we were literally at a standstill approaching the Golden Gate Bridge. *Hint

Driving to San Fransisco

This Mother’s Day weekend in Napa Valley was nothing short of magical. From the wine tastings to the culinary delights, each moment was infused with a generous amount love and laughter that I am deeply grateful for.

This experience holds cherished memories that will last a lifetime. I must say, there is a certain level of healing that mother-daughter weekend trips provide. I enjoy traveling with my mother because I believe that it is truly a remarkable opportunity to view each other as regular human beings just navigating life and trying to have a good time along the way….

Napa Valley Itinerary

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