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PEOPLE Magazine Article

Coach Holiday Delivers California Foodie Experience and More…

Napa Valley and Sonoma restaurants…

One of my favorite food stops was for the casual cuisine offered at Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen, a critically acclaimed restaurant in Napa Valley. Multi-award winning owner and Chef, Cindy Pawlcyn, a wine country pioneer cum 'farm to table' philosopher took time from her busy lunch duties to chat with us (something that never would have happened if I popped by on my own). One look at her bright blue reading glasses and pink chef's jacket and I knew her cuisine would not disappoint. I sampled Duck and Sausage Gumbo, Incredible Mushroom Tamales, Chocolate Walnut Sundae and House-made Papaya Sorbet. I was hooked and knew I would make it my business to come back for an encore.

Wine, wine, wine …

Every meal we had was paired with California wines of the region. Add to that long stops at some memorable wineries set in gorgeous surroundings. Oh my goodness; without a trace of guilt we tasted to our hearts' delight. And, with our Trafalgar Coach waiting at the door we never had to worry about who the designated driver would be as we roamed the glorious countryside.

A plethora of interesting experiences…

Trafalgar's varied itinerary kept us hopping in the nicest way possible. One morning we attended a wine blending seminar at Ravenswood Winery in Sonoma. That meant we were given three varietals (Zinfandel, Carignan and Petite Sirah) and we had to decide how much of each we wanted in our 'personal blend.' At the close of the mini-course each of us left with our own corked bottle containing the wine we had created. How's that for a fun souvenir to bring home and serve at your next dinner party?

I didn't want it to end…

At yet another Napa Valley stop, we attended an artisan olive oil tasting right alongside the impressive olive groves at Round Pond Winery. We even had a 'tasting stop' at Castello di Amorosa, a huge Tuscan-style castle with an hand-painted Great Hall and 30 acres of vineyards surrounding it's gates and guard towers. P.S. Journeywoman hid in their wine cellar hoping that the bus would leave without her.



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