About Ali | Sunshine & Vines

Those beautiful yellow blooms that grow in between the vines? That’s mustard.

It grows in the winter when the vines are dormant, and though it doesn’t get as much attention as the grapes, it is itself bright, beautiful, and integral to the health of the soil.

I appreciate the mustard.

See, I live in wine country, and while I do adore wine, what I truly love is everything in between — the landscape, the climate, the architecture and the experiences that are all integral parts of the wine country lifestyle. That’s my mustard.

I love tasting a great drop at new beautiful location, and I can’t resist a spa lunch with a spectacular view. Popping corks from a picnic blanket on a wide, green, shady lawn… sipping a crisp sauvignon blanc on a quiet patio overlooking the valley on a hot summer afternoon… inhaling a big red cabernet in a dark, damp cave… Aaaaaaaaaand I’m happy.

I’m aware there are around 500 wineries in Napa Valley and hundreds of restaurants and other activities. And while I’ve visited quite a few of each, that number makes me realize how narrow my experiences have been up to this point.

I’m going to change that.

So, the goal of this blog is not only to document my experiences at the wineries, restaurants, and events for myself, but also try to help those of you planning a trip to Napa figure out which activities and experiences may be best suited for you.

Ready? Let’s go!

Thanks for visiting.


If you’re interested, here are a few other bits of info about me:

  • I live in Napa with my husband and two young kids.
  • I grew up in Upstate New York, and as much as I love this Napa climate there will always be a place in my heart for winters that make your nose hairs freeze and summers so humid that even the straightest hair turns into a ‘fro.
  • Not only do I appreciate a glass of wine, I also enjoy beer, Diet Coke, and the Pamplemousse flavored Le Croix fizzy water (I mean, I cannot NOT drink that stuff. It’s perfection.).
  • Though I think about food constantly, and I appreciate great food when I have it, I still don’t consider myself a “foodie”. I’m not scared of a Lean Cuisine.
  • I’m a pretty private person, so this blog is scary for me. I feel exposed. But it’s worth it, because hopefully you’ll get some great ideas. Plus, it’s good to push beyond your comfort zone sometimes. Isn’t it??? Please say yes…

Come on!

Whether you’re planning a trip to wine country or just vacationing in your mind, join me in experiencing wine country the way I have — by appreciating and enjoying every minute of it.

Want to reach out to me directly? Please, drop me a note.