California Dreaming Part 2: Wine Country

California Dreaming Part 2: Wine Country

Calistoga was such a cute little town. Known for its mineral hot springs and famous mud baths (which were closed because of Covid), the town got its name from a drunken boast of the town’s founder, Samuel Brannan, who claimed that he was going to make the place the Saratoga of California only to say the “Calistoga of Sarifornia”.

Check out these beautiful Victorian homes and beautiful streets.

Also, you know you’re in California when you see signs in Filipino!

Naturally, we went on a few wine tastings since we were in the Napa Valley. One of our faves was the Trinitas Cellars at the Meritage. The wines were so delish and modestly priced. So we, of course, shipped a few bottles home.

We also checked out the stunning Castello di Amorosa, a 13th Century styled Tuscan castle and winery built by vintner Dario Sattui. It opened its doors to the public in 2007. The masonry, ironwork and woodwork were all built by hand using Old World techniques. It was incredible.

Also had to stop at St. Supéry Estate Vineyards and Winery as I fell in love with their 100% estate grown Cabernet last year. They not only have the most delicious wine, but they also employ sustainable practices such as using solar to offset 80% of their energy costs, compost, harbor beneficial insects to decrease use of pesticides, recycle all their winery and bottle-making materials, among other things. Oh and because I loved their wines so much, I joined their wine club! LOL.

Since we couldn’t do the mudbaths, we checked out the Golden Haven Hot Springs spa, where they have mineral pools and spas fed by the natural aquifer underneath the property. I also had the best massage to help prepare me for the grueling hikes that await us in Yosemite.

A lot of people rave about In-N-Out Burger,  but it does not hold a candle to the California-inspired gourmet burgers at Gott’s Roadside, which was our last stop before heading to Tahoe.

Up next in Part 3: Lake Tahoe!



On September 27th, the fire consumed over 250 homes and Calistoga was evacuated. This fire destroyed the structure that housed all of Castello di Amorosa’s wine! It is heartbreaking. Over 4 million acres have burned so far, 30 lives lost, so many people displaced, and among the casualties are the Meadowood Restaurant (with 3 Michelin Stars) that was on my bucket list and the 41 year old Chateau Boswell.  My heart goes out to these people. I can’t even imagine the depths of their loss.