If you're heading to San Fran and have some time, I do think it's worth your while to drive up to Napa or Sonoma Valley (only about an hour and a half away). Even if you aren't a huge wine enthusiast, just being among rows and rows of gorgeous and lush vines is super-romantic and relaxing. We booked our tour with the Wine Country Tour Shuttle (which is a great tour that picks you up at the Ferry Building). The itinerary allowed us to visit four wineries (V. Sattui Winery was my favourite–it's the only Napa Valley winery that offers a picnic lunch to the public) and ended with a 50-minute ferry bay cruise back to where we started. It's a whole day event, but it was definitely worth it. Tip: if you're really nice to the sommeliers sometimes they'll give you an extra sampling or pour more vino than usual.
Before dinner, we decided to stop by this cute olive oil shop called We Olive (conveniently located only a few doors down from our choice of restaurant that evening). I pretty much fell in love with this store the minute we walked in. They carried every single type of olive oil you can imagine (who knew there was more to oil than just plain olives?). I ended up purchasing a few flavoured olive oils for my parents. But, if you're not a big olive oil fan they also have great tapenades, mustards, vinegars, chutneys and more–the perfect snack to serve guests back home with. Bonus: there are samples all over the room, so you can have a sample tasting feast–I did!
For dinner, I made reservations at A16 (recommended by Jenn and Dave), an Italian restaurant filled with delicious pizzas. If you plan on going here, I definitely think booking a table in advance is better (or head their before 7pm) as this placed gets pretty jam-packed. Tip: when booking ask to be seated at the back room, it's more private and intimate. If you're looking for a light yet fulfilling meal, you should try the Pomodoro pizza (this was my order) which is comprised of cherry tomatoes, basil, ricotta, chiles, garlic, prosciutto cotto and olive oil. Yum! Of course, being a sweets fanatic, and as full as we were, we still ordered dessert. My pick? You can't go wrong with the almond cake with roasted nectarines and sage semifreddo.
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