vacation recap. part two.

back again! nick and his dad are outside finishing up the deck... and here i am, bloggin away.

thursday june 5.
check out all the photos from this day here.
another early morning. fingers crossed we would be able to do the hot air balloon. was not going to get up early on our anniversary and saturday we were checking out and moving on...
got the okay for lift off! exciting!
took a zillion pictures. my silly self deleted half of them though. sigh. i cannot believe i did that. wish it was any other day. but seriously, the one thing i wanted to do and was hoping to have 38745 pictures from. oh well. we were reluctant to pay their photographer for pictures but decided to do it any way. so glad that we did otherwise we would have no pictures from the beginning of our trip. had some really cool ones too. wah...
k. enough whining. onto the fun pictures.
really glad we paid the guy. i mean, i can't imagine not having something like this and there would be no other way to have this view. so fun.
i had some reservations about this flight. thought it would be uber scary. but it wasn't. was more quiet than i expected and really quite peaceful.

the one picture that i deleted, that i miss the most is the one with the balloon next to a building. it just showed it's size. i never really realized how huge they were!

so how did i delete all the pictures? because i'm blonde at heart. so we came back to the hotel after the flight and i uploaded everything to the computer. when we came back to the hotel after going out again, i uploaded again and clicked replace instead of add {regarding the duplicate numbers} and poof, the beginning of the hot air balloon pictures were deleted.
nick tried and tried to find them. no such luck. and once i realized why they weren't there, all hope was lost. my mom's theory is that we just need to go on another hot air balloon ride.
after the balloon ride, we hit the wineries again! had to stop for lunch first. stopped at taylor's. i loved that every where we went was so earth friendly. i swear, i've never seen more hybrids in my life. a lot of the restaurants had recycling which was so cool. taylor's had this nifty little cups.

hess was our first stop of the day.
nick was excited because they had dragons on their flags! if only we were as impressed with the wines. maybe it was just that we killed our taste buds! who knows. they did have some super cool displays. that funky little tree? an old vine.
loved the brick walls they had. made nick stop for a photo op! just have to edit out that right side of the photo....
had a koi pond with some lily pads. and i, apparently, was in macro mode for this vacation...

second stop was artesa.
not sure how we heard about this place. think it was in most of the brochures we had picked up along the way. had some super neat architecture. was built into a mountain!

were not impressed with the service. oy. the guy sucked. so i'm sure even if the wines were good, we would have been put off on the place anyway.
had the tripod in the car with us {thanks colleen!} and decided to use it for the first time this trip! oh and yay remotes!

then it was off to domaine carneros.
had some questionable service here too. the dude was more focused on the bimbos at the table next to us. we almost got up and left. it was that bad.
had a little visitor while we were waiting on the patio...
even though we had some bad service, we decided to give them more of our money and order a cheese tray. it was sooo good! nick was even a fan of the goat cheese which he swears he doesn't like. ;o)
the rest of our evening was spent in the hotel room. nick passed out while i watched some mindless tv {food network, nba finals}. once nick woke up, we ordered a pizza and then watched national treasure two. kinda. i fell asleep so it was to be continued!

friday june 6. our 5 year anniversary! see all the photos here.
woke up at our leisure. ate breakfast downstairs. just had a nice, lazy morning. weren't really sure what we wanted to do. were shockingly not in the mood for wine...
hit up cosentino first.

came highly recommended from one of nick's doctors. were really impressed. and they had a reasonably priced wine club. decisions, decisions. thought we should head off and could always come back if we needed to.
what says romantic anniversary date? jelly belly of course! ha.
headed over there and took their free tour. was pretty neat. had some awesome jelly belly artwork. check out george clooney.

after the tour we thought we should hit up some more wineries. st. supery it was.

they had some learning tools above the tasting room. it was about smells you would find in certain wines.

we decided that we did want to join cosentino's club, so we went back. and once we signed up, that meant more tastings. and no, nick cannot spit or pour out the rest of his wine if he doesn't like it. i, however, had no problem doing so. which is why most days i because the designated driver! see below:
and guess what? nick went back to the hotel and took a nap. then we walked to our anniversary dinner. ate at cuvee. way yummy!

saturday june 7. see all the pictures here.
our last day in napa. so sad. went by so quickly.
started the day off at sterling.

were told that it was a must stop. had to take a tram to get to the tasting area. pretty nifty!

there was a self guided tour and there were random areas where you could do some tastings. the views were insane. maybe it's just that we are impressed with anything hilly and non cornfield-y. ;o)
had some pretty good wine. our favorite was the malvasia bianca.
the nice tram lady took our picture.

were hoping to take one on the way up to the tasting room but these two crazy ladies sat opposite of one another. what is that? i mean, you came together. i assume you like one another. so sit next to each other dagnabit.
right next door was clos pegase. i guess it could be considered next door...
had some really strange artwork throughout the grounds.
see this ninja tree...

yeah, not really a ninja tree. just some strangely placed wind thingies... still funny though.
and how about these guys?!

is a thumb really artwork?
but they did have a cute dog inside. his owner painted amongst the barrels. the dog, luke, was super friendly and made us miss guinnea pig a bit.

as we were leaving, nick thought it would be a good idea to taste a grape fresh off the vine. which is so not close to being ripe. but whatever. it's his mouth!

next stop: clos du bois.

crowded. darn wine tasting festival. however, the lady was super generous with sharing her labels. side note: if you ever head to a winery, you can ask for old labels. my coworker is now making me a serving dish with all the labels we collected. k. back to the regularly scheduled topic.
stopped at geyser peak.

blech. darn taste of the valley. only had a select few wines out if you weren't with the tour.
best part of that stop... this picture. yes, it's me in the bathroom!

left that place in record time.
then hit bear republic for lunch.
don't remember the beers we had. i'm sure mine was a stout. nick was kinda miffed. our waitress didn't tell us that there were flights available. um, hello, that is seriously pertinent info!
food wasn't too bad.
our next stop. gas. the first purchase of the trip.

almost $65 later, we were ready to roll.
nick saw a billboard when we were driving around for a dessert winery. found it. and were sooo glad we stopped.
trentadue = yum.

didn't taste anything other than dessert wines. they have a chocolate, cherry port that was absolutely delicious!
then we stumbled across these funny glasses!

went to our next hotel. which was such a downgrade compared to our kick ass one.
the dude at the front desk offered us their 'best' room. um, no thanks. so glad we were only there for one evening.
got situated and then headed to one of guy fieri's restaurants. tex wasabi.

loud atmosphere. can totally see it being a crazy fun night spot. nick had real sushi. i had the gringo stuff. i don't like cooked fish. not sure i would be a fan of raw fish!

that's the end of part two. stay tunned for part three....


Kache said...

awesome thumb, clooney jb and remote pic!

Sorry about your balloon pics, but these are really cool!

KJ said...

FUN!!! Wow you hit a lot of wineries (is that how that's spelled?!). Anyway, you mean there is actually places without cornfields?!?!? Cool! ;) Love looking at all the photos! The balloon ride looks like it kicked some serious butt!!

KJ said...

Oh, yeah...btw, you've been tagged. Check out the deets on my blog.

Heather said...

awesome awesome pics... if you really want those other ones back, there's a program you can buy online to recover all the pictures you ever took off of your memory card. I had that happen on a trip to Washington one time.It recovered all of mine... I'll have to search and see if I can remember the name of it.

Heather said...

k. found it.
here it is:

Brandy said...

heather's helpful like that. i think the best pics are the wine and beer goggles, how hilarious!! looks like a kickass trip