Harvest 2015 - A Day Out In the Vineyards!
Hi everyone! My name is Carly, and I'm the manager here at the Inn on Randolph. Welcome to our blog!
Harvest 2015 is here in Napa. Around the Valley we throw around the term "Harvest" like someone would say "Summer" or "Fall" - its a distinct season everyone knows. It's when the grapes are heavy on the vines and most of the conversation around town revolves around who is picking what grapes when.
It's a heady time to be in Napa - the stakes are high for every winemaker during harvest. Picking too early, or picking too late, can completely change the characteristics of the grape. So when you vist Napa in the fall, don't be suprised to hear a lot of agricultural talk - we are a farming community!
We have had a new Innkeeper come on board at the Inn on Randolph, Liz Eisen. Liz is a great guest turned great employee - before she started working at the Inn on Randolph she lived in Southern California and stayed in every room at the Inn! Now she and her husband have fufilled her dream of moving to Napa.
This past Monday we decided to take a drive up through the Valley to visit some wineries that Liz and I had not been to before. It was a gorgeous, bright, sunny day in the Napa Valley. Here's what we found!
Our first stop was St. Supery. We both had not visited this winery before. When you drive up the first thing you notice is the stunning landscaping - a gorgeous canopy of trees over the driveway, beautiful huge pots of flowers and fountains, and lush lawns. The winery has a very bistro, upscale feel.
One of our favorite parts about visiting the winery was the view from the second floor. You could see the workers harvesting the grapes from the vineyards and sorting them into tubs. These grapes will become the base for your next favorite vintage! They also have a lovely art gallery throughout the second level that has intriguing modern art.
After St. Supery we drove to Elizabeth Spencer, just up Highway 29. Elizabeth Spencer is housed in the original Rutherford post office - a charming brick building. Whereas St. Supery has an estate feel, Elizabeth Spencer feels like a tasting garden. The seating is outside on cafe tables surrounded by manicured gardens and walkways. Our tasting host was extremely knowledgable about the wines - and a big fan of them herself! She balanced spending time with us and giving us space - and struck the perfect balance! We learned all about the history of the label and the regions the wines hailed from, all while enjoying the gorgeous gardens and cool breezes. It was a lovely experience.
As we made our way to the next winery we drove past one of our favorites, Round Pond. I always describe Round Pond as having the look of a 1920s Hollywood estate. You drive down a gorgeous palm tree lined driveway up to a stunning estate
June 1, 2011 - Everything is done! Grand Opening!
Everything is completed...all of the historic Inn rooms are done, everything inside is new and looks gorgeous. Guests are happy and it feels great to be playing host for our Napa valley visitors instead playing construction manager. Some recent review exerpts:
Ellen (San Francisco) says - "The Inn on Randolph has a new owner, Karen, and she has created the perfect Napa retreat."
Jill (Los Angeles) says - "I HIGHLY recommend this place I think it is really the top of the line accomodation in napa. and....the bed was like a cloud and the sheets are the softest most yummy sheets I have ever slept in.."
Alice (Bejing) says - "Service by the team was attentive but not over the top. We all felt very relaxed and, actually, very at home! We were sorry to leave at the end but looking forward to a return stay one day.
Very impressed by the job that Karen and her husband (as first time inn-owners) have done. High-quality comfort mixed with a relaxed and chilled out ambience. We were disappointed that we forgot to take photos - but the ones on the website (which has been updated) are an accuate protrayal."
Thanks to everyone who helped us create this great place - you know who you are and we are incredibly thankful.
April 1, 2012 - Spring, everything is waking up
Today was so beautiful; I was driving through Jameson canyon and noticed that the vines were coming back to life - Bud Break! The vineyards look awesome right now and the contrast between the dark gnarly trunks and the first leaves emerging is breathtaking.
The Inn is also emerging from a winter slumber, well slumber isn't quite right...it's been a frenzy of construction, designing, picking great tile, the right colors, new furniture, well you get the drift - so, the Inn is waking up too. I love how everything looks and hope to see you there soon. RIght now mid-May is our target for full operation. Wish us luck.
March 24, 2012 - Home Stretch...
After almost nine months of major construction at the Inn on Randolph in downtown Napa we are finally nearing the finish line. The foundations have been replaced, new roofs have gone on, the 160 year old extremely unique 10 feet high windows have been rebuilt and reglazed, the bathrooms have been remodeled and now include heated floors, the kitchen has been enlarged, revamped and tricked out with all the latest, the buildings are all repainted, and as I write this the new landscaping is under way! As the new beautiful and comfy furnishings are arriving, I am getting very excited to be welcoming our guests. Thanks to all of you who have called and tried to book rooms - I really appreciate your patience and I hope you will agree with us that it was worth the wait. The calendar on the website is open starting the second week in May. If you have a moment check our latest trip advisors reviews to see what our guests are saying about the "new" inn. If you are interested in attending the grand opening party make sure to click the Facebook "Like" button at the top of the screen. We will be posting the party details on our Facebook page.
See you at the Inn!
February 14, 2012 - A Great Find...
Part of our work getting the Inn on Randolph, a historic Bed and Breakfast in downtown Napa, ready is to search for great wine tasting experiences. We've been on some great tours and have tasted many fine wines but today was something special – Palmaz.
Their theme: Know the land - Know the Grape, and make wine that honors both.
Carved into a hill they have constructed one of the most phenomenal wineries I've ever seen. Palmaz was designed from the ground up as a series of caves vertically stacked through the mountain, which creates a fifteen-story height that is used for gravity flow winemaking. We had a small private tour with six of our friends led by Brad who by the way was not only knowledgeable and informative, but also very funny. After our hour-long tour, which left us all speechless and in awe we were treated to a wonderful wine tasting and food pairing in their beautiful dining room. I was torn between the 2007 and the 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon so I bought a bottle of each! This six hundred-acre property located in the Mt. George region in the southeastern part of the Napa valley is not to be missed. Book early as they offer private tours by appointment only.
November 16, 2011 - Napa Valley Film Festival - Huge Success!
The inaugural Napa Valley Film festival wrapped up on Sunday and it was a huge success. For five glorious fall days the Valley was hopping with films, wine and parties hosted from Napa to Calistoga. We decided to take a day off from construction and bought a pass for Saturday and watched four films – all of them were excellent, especially First Generation. This film, which followed four low-income students in California as they struggled to overcome the tremendous obstacles that keep well deserving but disadvantaged students from receiving the college education they deserve is still haunting me four days later. I wasn't surprised to see it won an award.
August 28, 2011 - Times, they are a changing...
The ultimate remodeling challenge... How to preserve the charm and incredible personality of the 160 year old Inn on Randolph while at the same time bringing it up to date and adding the amenities and special touches that will make for a memorable an unforgettable Napa Valley getaway for our guests? The plans for the main house are complete and the cottages remodels are underway. Bring on the challenge the fun has begun!
August 21, 2011 - Week 2, Progress
What a difference a week makes. We had the whole property pruned and trimmed of 20 years of overgrowth. Check out the before and after pictures of the front of the Inn. The beautiful historic house is finally visible from the street!
August 11, 2011 - Great First Week...
What a great first week we had as the new owners of the Inn on Randolph. We caught the last Chef's Market of the season - loved the wine, the music and met a few new friends.
Our days have been crazy busy, but we are making sure to get out at night to relax and enjoy everything that our new community has to offer. I love the fact that the Inn is within walking distance of so many top rated, excellent restaurants. We had great meals at Angele, Celadon, Bistro Sabor, Mini Mango Thai Bistro, and Norman Rose Tavern.
And, just so you don't think we are acting like fun guests on vacation we did pull the first construction permit. A lot of the trees on the property are overgrown and some of the landscaping is out of control. A crew comes on Monday to cut, prune, and clear selected areas- can't wait to actually be able to see the beautiful Inn from the street! I'll post before and after pictures soon...
August 8, 2011 - Big Changes for the Inn on Randolph
The excitement and fun begins! Just closed escrow on the inn. I am so thrilled to be the new owner. Renovations plans are underway to refresh, rejuvenate and revitalize this beautiful historic inn in downtown Napa. Can't wait to share this special place!