The second half of our anniversary trip was one of the most unexpectedly amazing experiences. We randomly booked an Airbnb right before we left and, to be honest, I wasn’t that excited about it. We had originally planned to head to Napa after our stay in Sonoma, but we realized some of the wineries we still wanted to visit were closer to a town called Petaluma.
Just a 40 minute drive from Farmhouse Inn, we hopped in our rental car and headed to Petaluma. We eventually pulled up to the most beautiful ranch with animals as far as you could see. We parked the car and checked out our cabin for the next two days, and it was the most charming little thing. Filled with rare antique finds, colorful vintage books, a chandelier and a canopy bed… I was totally in decor heaven.
After settling in, we explored the property and met all of its four-legged tenants. You name it, they had it! We quickly made friends with the highland cows, the goats, the puppies, the horses, and the BABY RABBITS. I died. We even got to hang out with some emus and zebra (yes they even have a zebra). We spent hours playing with the animals and exploring the property before heading out for dinner.
We decided on Risibisi for dinner and it ended up being our favorite meal of the trip. Right in the middle of lovely downtown Petaluma, Risibisi Restaurant serves healthy and fresh Italian cuisine featuring the finest local ingredients found in Sonoma County. Cameron and I are picky about Italian food and this place was DELICIOUS. They served some of the best carbonara we’ve ever had.
The next morning we went to Napa valley for one of our favorite days of the trip. We started our morning with a 4:30 am wakeup call for a 6 am hot air balloon ride with Napa Valley Aloft. Neither of us had ever been in a hot air ballon and it was such a peaceful and serene experience.
After our ride, we headed into St. Helena for a quick breakfast at the quaint Gillwood’s Cafe. Gillwood’s happen to be right next to the Orin Swift tasting room which had been highly recommended to visit. We opted for a quick tasting while we were there and fell in love with their unique wines. My favorite was the Mercury Head cabernet sauvignon.
Next we headed to the beautiful David Arthur Vineyards. This family-owned winery is a must-visit while in Napa. I had connected with the owner David Long’s daughter Laura on Instagram a while back. She followed me and noticed that Cameron and I love wine so she sent us a beautiful rose from their vineyard. We stayed in touch and I asked her for suggestions for our trip a few months before we visited.
Next thing we knew, we were on a private tour and tasting at her family’s beautiful property. She was such a delight and felt like an instant friend. She told us stories origins of David Arthur Vineyards and the Long Family Ranch that sits atop Pritchard Hill. Her grandfather Don Long, a butcher by trade owned a small grocery store and had been interested in the California wine country. He began steadily investing in Napa Valley real estate and acquired nearly 1,000 acres. We spent the day learning more about California wines and enjoyed every minute. We tasted some of the most bold and delicious cabernets.
The second half of our annivesary trip taught me an important lesson about learning to go with the flow. When we travel, I tend to get caught up in all the things I want to see and do and sometimes forget to stay present. This trip I really focused on enjoying the little moments together. Here’s to more travel and quality time with our loved ones in 2019!