A Trip to Sonoma and Napa Valley with Friends

Going on a trip with friends can always be a great time, throw in Sonoma and Napa Vineyards and it’s pretty much a shoe-in.  We chose to take a little holiday in the fall with a group of our closest friends.  Kevin was the coordinator of the travel arrangements to get us there all safe and sound.  I looked for a home we could rent on Airbnb that would work for all of us.  Once this was all done scheduling of the vineyards for wine tasting took place.

Off to a great start

Our flights all went off without a hitch from Tampa as we landed in Sacramento Airport.  A large 12 passenger van was rented and soon we were off to our Airbnb home for the week.  The home was perfect for us, lots of room, huge dining room and great kitchen.  We had made a stop and opened up some wine to enjoy.

Our week was filled with amazing vineyards and wine tasting, beginning with Lasseter Family Winery.  This was a private tour arranged for us.  The owners of Lasseter Family Winery are the founders of Pixar Animation Studios and just as successful as they are with Pixar they also are with their wine.  The reception we received at this vineyard was amazing, they put out all the stops as you can see in these photos below.  The video in this post shows us taking a very informative wine making tour here.

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The welcome sign at Lassiter Winery
The welcome sign at Lassiter Winery
Beautiful grapes on a vine
Beautiful grapes on a vine

The Fun and Wine Tasting Continues

Since vineyards were the main attraction we kept on going all week long.  Other fantastic vineyards visited were Flora Springs, Whitehall, Russian River Vineyards, Buena Vista, Petroni and Joseph Cellars.  Each were unique in their own way.  I think I can pretty much speak for the group that we all loved the wine tastings , some more than others, some white, some red.  We all have different tastes and it was interesting and fun to pick up on the flavors and aromas of each of the wines.

Flora Springs has a stunning vineyard and grounds!  The name very well suits this vineyard.  We all loved sitting outside on their porch at a large table just enjoying the view and the wine.

Pathway to winery at Lassiter
Pathway to winery

Whitehall Lane Winery in Napa was not a scheduled stop, but we managed to drop in and take a tour.  Unfortunately, I forgot to take any photos. Just off the main highway you pull directly into the parking lot.  Beautiful area upstairs to have our private tasting.

Russian River Vineyards, okay they win my vote for the most comfortable place to relax and have some wine and delicious food! This was actually our second time going here and we enjoyed even more with our friends. A must stop when in Sonoma area, you won’t regret it.


Did you know there are dog friendly wineries in Sonoma and Kenwood? Also the beautiful hotel Kenwood Inn and Spa is dog friendly and even offers doggie spa packages!



Buena Vista Winery Bubble Room
Buena Vista Winery Bubble Room

Now for something a little…different

Buena Vista Winery is probably the most unique of all the vineyards you could visit. The “Count of Buena Vista,” Jean-Charles Boisset is the owner of this… well you have to see it for yourself.  Again, Kevin and I had been here previously and we wanted our friends to experience the eccentric atmosphere of Buena Vista. Jean-Charles Boisset they say is the most flamboyant man in the wine business. we had the pleasure of seeing and saying hello on our first visit.  Just love his socks! The must see here is to enter the Bubble Room.  Champagne anyone?!

Buena Vista Winery Bubble Room
Buena Vista Winery Bubble Room
Buena Vista Winery Bubble Room piano
Buena Vista Winery Bubble Room

Petroni Vineyard was in a little more private setting. Climbing up the steep mountain and thin road to get there was a little intense, but when we there, the views!  It is here I felt more like being in Italy countryside.  Please take a look at their web site and check out the aerial video they have and you will see what I mean.

Petroni Vineyards wine barrel
Petroni Vineyards

Last but surely not least…

Joseph Cellars Winery in Calistoga. Owned by the Bartholomew family, our friend Jay who was with us is acquainted with the family so we wanted to take a ride to see this vineyard.  A few of the group had golfing on their schedule so the rest of us loaded up in the van while I claimed to be the designated driver.  Not sure if I remember whose idea it was to take the so called shorter route going through the mountain with a 12 passenger van, but we did. Never, ever will I do it again.  Needless to say we took the 10 more minute in length drive on flat ground back.  While at this winery we had a wine tasting in their caves, which was really nice.  Lots of wine down there!  Loved their Zinfandel!

Here's a little video of our trip!

Traveling with Friends

I believe we had a fantastic week in Sonoma and Napa and can not wait to do it again.  LOVED that the guys did all the cooking for us girls.  LOVED the amazing restaurants we dined at and Delicious wine was LOVED by all.  Best of All- LOVED the company!

And we will be doing it again….. Italy 2019!!

four men cooking in the rented home kitchen in Sonoma California
The guys cooking away at the rented home

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Sherrie has been traveling for sometime now. Her husband Kevin and herself love to explore different destinations and adventures. She has always wanted to write, so writing about traveling just became the obvious combination. "I love, love, love to travel! Everything about it- views, sights, experiences, exploration, food, wine and of course meeting people!" Sherrie Fabrizi Allbritten


  • January 23, 2018

    wow, this looks like it was such a beautiful trip!! I’m currently 31 weeks pregnant and looking forward to the day I get to have a glass of wine again! I’ve never been to Napa Valley, but it’s certainly on my list. I’ll keep this vineyard in mind 🙂

  • Aisha

    January 24, 2018

    Wine tasting? Sign me up! I love the outdoor setup at the Russian River Vineyard as it’s 100% my kind of vibe but The Bubble Room also looks tres cool and spunky! Looks like such a fun trip!

  • January 24, 2018

    I’ve been to Napa, but just for a short stop and your post really reminds me of it again! We did a wine tasting too and it was so good! I will definitely mark your spots so I have places to go next time – and then for longer!!

  • January 24, 2018

    You know you have got to be I good hands if they are founders of Pixar. Not possible to no have great wine capabilities too. I sadly have never been on a wine tour. Maybe I should put that on my bucketlist. I know it would inform me in more then I know about wine for sure.

  • January 24, 2018

    This sounds like so much fun! What a great trip and awesome that the guys did all the cooking! I didn’t know the owners of Pixar also did wine.

  • January 24, 2018

    Sounds like a wonderful trip! I’m not much of a wine drinker, but it looks like so much fun. I also never knew the Lasseters own a winery, how cool! My husband and I did go on a cruise once with another couple that we were very close with at the time and had a blast. It’s fun to vacation as a family, but also fun and different to travel with friends!

  • January 24, 2018

    This looks like a wonderful weekend, I love wine tasting. I will share this post with my cousin who is moving to Napa soon. Thanks for the information

  • Dorothy

    January 24, 2018

    This looks like an amazing trip to a place that is just gorgeous. It is a great place to make lots of memories because there is so much to do!

  • Krysti

    January 25, 2018

    Sounded like such an amazing trip and loved your photographs! I’d love to travel there one day!

  • Don

    January 25, 2018

    Wow, the view of the vineyard while sipping the wine, priceless! Fantastic weekend!

  • Tonya

    January 25, 2018

    That looks like so so much fun! The bNb looked really cute too! I want to travel with a group friends soon! Seems like such a good time!

  • January 26, 2018

    I’ve always wanted to go to Sonoma and Napa with friends! It sounds like such a fun trip!


  • January 26, 2018

    I didn’t realize the people behind Pixar actually ran a winery as well. Napa really is one of the more beautiful and serene places in the world. IT’s so amazing out there. And the food and wine are amazing.

  • January 26, 2018

    Nice pictures! This looks like a fun trip. I love wine and we have found some good brands by visiting wineries on trips. I have always wanted to visit California and of I do, I think I will be taking this tour when I get to go!

  • January 27, 2018

    Wine tasting, making and drinking. Seems like the perfect vacation with friends. I would never have thought going to Napa in the winter could be fun. Glad you enjoyed your California experience.

  • Becca Wilson

    January 27, 2018

    This looks like such an amazing place. I would love to have the chance to go here and experience it one day!

  • January 27, 2018

    A pleasure to read about Sonoma and Napa Valley. Seems like a fantastic destination for a family trip and also with friends. I loved the cooking session done by all guys 🙂 Thank you for sharing!

  • January 29, 2018

    What a lovely trip with friends. The wine testing is something I wanted to experience. So much fun too when ladies could relax while men do the cooking. 😉

  • January 30, 2018

    Oh wow. Looks like a very great trip for all of you. Never had experienced such kind of wine tasting. Am sure you did enjoyed every moment.

  • February 2, 2018

    This looks like so much fun! Something that I’ve always wanted to do minus the wine tasting. Not much into wine

  • February 5, 2018

    Awesome! Now I want to go drink some delicious wine! Looks like you had a really fun time 🙂

  • February 6, 2018

    What a beautiful, beautiful place. Looks like y’all have so much fun!

  • Kristin

    February 6, 2018

    Such a fun time! I’m dying to get out to Napa and Sonoma! Bucket list for sure!

  • February 6, 2018

    That sounds like such a fun trip! My mom and I took a day trip to Sonoma when we were in San Francisco a couple years ago and we loved it. Oh, and I love that the guys did all of the cooking!

  • February 9, 2018

    I’ve always wanted to go wine tasting in Napa. It looks like you visited some great wineries. If I ever put together my girlfriend getaway to northern California, I’ll definitely refer to this for ideas.

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