From corks to forks, we’ve rounded up the very best spots to sip and savor throughout Napa Valley’s rustic and refined retreat, plus new experiences not to be missed, and where to find live music.
Calistoga is located at the north end of Napa Valley, about 25 miles from downtown Napa and 75 miles from San Francisco. This small town is best known for its unique wellness offerings, with natural geothermal hot springs and restorative mud baths that have drawn wanderlust travelers from near and far over the years.
Though small in size, Calistoga is big on personality, and visitors will find a laid-back vibe coupled with world-class wines and ridiculously friendly locals.
New Spots to Nosh
If you haven’t visited Calistoga lately, there are some pretty spectacular new spots to savor:
Fleetwood at Calistoga Motor Lodge - Though it just opened this summer, Fleetwood has quickly established itself as a favorite among the locals. Enjoy family-style wood-fired dishes and amazing craft cocktails.
PicoBar at Solage Resort - The newest poolside addition at Solage features casual Mexican cuisine with a Calistoga twist.
House of Better at Dr. Wilkinson’s - Healthy southwestern flavors sing at Dr. Wilk’s new outdoor restaurant. Don’t miss the pie vending machine for slices on the go!
Lovina - This local favorite just opened up new patio digs and is serving up homestyle comfort food like their famous fried chicken, plus the owner Jen makes her own pottery and fires it in the kiln onsite.
Amaro at Mount View Hotel - Amaro offers up a range of Italian dishes — gnocchi, pasta, braised meats, and pizza — along with an Italian-focused wine list and one of the most extensive selections of Amaro (an Italian liqueur) in the country.
These tried-and-true Calistoga standbys have stood the test of time, and for good reason:
Sam’s Social Club - named after Indian Springs Resort founder Samuel Brannan, Sam’s is the go-to for fresh California cuisine in a convivial atmosphere.
Calistoga Inn & Brewery - Right in the heart of the action downtown, Calistoga Inn & Brewery has one of the best patios in town, and they brew their own beer.
Buster’s BBQ - A visit to Calistoga wouldn’t be complete without sampling the best BBQ in Napa Valley!
Cafe Sarafornia - Enjoy homestyle breakfast and lunch options that are perfect for fueling up before a day of wine tasting at this casual downtown eatery.
But that’s not all! Find a full list of Calistoga restaurants here.
New Spots to Sip
A handful of new sipping spots have popped up on our radar over the last couple of years that are not to be missed:
Elusa Winery at The Four Seasons - Brand new on the block is Elusa Winery at the Four Seasons Calistoga - the only working winery with a resort onsite.
Brian Arden Wines - A local husband-and-wife team handles the operations for this small winery that produces less than 2500 cases a year. Enjoy breathtaking views of the Palisades mountains from the tasting room.
Lola Wines - The historic Lola House tasting room was built in 1890 and has an old-world European charm, and the pet-friendly back garden is a perfect spot for afternoon sips in the shade.
Favorite Food & Wine Pairings
Like a meal, but at a winery (shhhh don’t call it “lunch”):
Lola Wines Cortez Conservas Pairing - Winemaker Seth Cripe and his family produce the only bottarga (a salt and dry-cured Grey Mullet Roe) available in the U.S. The Cortez Conservas experience pairs Lola wines with bottarga, buttonwood smoked roe, and mojama served with local butter and a baguette.
Lawer Estates Sunday Bubbles & Breakfast - Starting with Lawer’s award-winning sparkling wine, learn what to pair at your next brunch with friends and how the tasting experience with wine changes when adding different ingredients to the eggs.
Brian Arden Wines Chef’s Experience - Peek into the garden where many of the vegetables and fruits are sourced, check out the chickens that provide eggs for the kitchen and fertilizer for the vineyard, then head to the winery for a backstage pass to the winemaking process. Finish your tour with a pairing of seasonal culinary delights from the chef. Come hungry for this one!
Clos Pegase Cabana S’mores and More Pairing - Enjoy a private cabana along with up to six guests and sit around the fire pit, roast s’mores, and relax on the outdoor patio at Clos Pegase. Paired with a selection of the winemaker’s favorite wines, this is a wonderful way to enjoy an afternoon in Calistoga.
Tamber Bey - Add a savory cookie pairing to any tasting experience, or make it a full meal with a farm-to-table picnic lunch from Sam’s General Store, available for preorder when you make your tasting reservation.
Of course, there are way too many wonderful wineries and tasting rooms in Calistoga (more than 60 by our last count) to list them all here. Explore all the options for sipping your way through Calistoga in the winery directory.
Live Music in Calistoga
When in Calistoga, take some time to soak up the laid back vibe and chill out with live music at these local gems (please check directly with the business as times and days are subject to change):
- Calistoga Inn Restaurant & Brewery from 6-9 pm daily
- Pacífico Restaurant from 5-9 pm Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays
- Picayune Cellars on Friday nights
- Lincoln Avenue Brewery on Saturday (and/or Friday)
- Buster’s BBQ has blues, jazz and R&B every Sunday afternoon
- The Tri Tones play at Hydro Grill every Sunday from 6-9 pm