Recently we filled you in on an incredible train excursion from Portland to LA. Well, if that journey wasn't quite classy enough, we have great news. Napa Valley Wine Tours are offering a whole new way to explore the region, the Wine Train.
The idea stems from a railroad segment built in 1864 and renovated in 1989 to service Napa Valley. The circuit runs through the valley's center, with great access to all the vineyards along the way. The Wine Train gives visitors stellar views of the countryside, as well as a top-notch dining experience.
Most train cars on the Napa Valley line date to the 1910's, but are now restored to their glorious original state. Most have interior decor reminiscent of an upscale turn of the century hotel. But if outdoor views are what you're interested in, look no further. The Vista Dome passenger cars have large arching windows, with 360-degree views of the surrounding countryside.
The company offers over a dozen different train tours for all budgets and occasions. Dress the part and an Agatha Christie-esque crime on the Wine Train's murder mystery tour. Tour guides Guests encourage guests to dress the part. Don't worry, it's only red wine stains. For more intimate occasions, climb aboard for the Romance on the Rails Tour. Or, learn all about Napa's beverages from the makers themselves as they ride along for a “pairing adventure.” Standard tours run from three to six hours and stop at partner wineries along the way.
Don't forget the most important part of any wine tasting experience: the food served alongside the drink. This is one area where the Wine Train shine above all else. Dining accommodations are a far cry from airplane fare. Dozens of world-class chefs staff the train, with three separate kitchens scattered throughout. Meals usually include three courses with rotating menu items such as gemellia pasta with wild mushroom confit. And of course, the suggested wine pairing of a pinot gris.
The Gourmet Express starts at $146 per attendant, with more expensive and elaborate tours available. But these other options also cover admission and fees for tastings at Napa Valley vineyards. But between the five-star dining on the rails and phenomenal views, maybe the Wine Train is just the ride you've been looking for.
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