The city of Napa was first established alongside the Napa River back in 1847 and is the only true “city” in the Napa Valley. At the far southern end of the valley, Napa is home to a bounty of beautiful Victorian-era homes and commercial buildings, historical buildings and the new Oxbow Market.
Along downtown Napa’s streets can be found places where history was made. In many ways, Napa’s historical sites reflect the history of California itself. The Bear Flag revolt that led to California becoming part of the U.S. began just a few miles to the north in 1846. The City was laid out by Nathan Coombs in 1848, and grew tremendously through the gold rush of 1849, and the later silver and mercury mining heydays. Today you can walk the same streets where 49ers, Chinese laborers, lumber barons, and early winemaking pioneers began building the City of Napa more than 150 years ago, and you will find many treasured historic structures still in use.
The Historic Napa Mill features award-winning restaurants, retail shops and a day spa. The well-preserved historic elements of the riverfront property provide the perfect setting for a lazy afternoon visit. The Historic Napa Mill’s Riverbed Performance Plaza provides an exciting outdoor backdrop for art, theater, wine, food, and music festivals. The Mill is home to some of the most unique shopping and dining in the Napa Valley. Whether seeking a casual breakfast or a four-course feast, diners flock to the restaurants calling the Historic Napa Mill home.
Napa’s Wine Tasting Rooms
Downtown Napa is host to a number of wonderful tasting rooms that offer unique experiences. A favorite is the famous Bounty Hunter, where guests can experience a vast list of fine wines by the glass. Indulge in the ultimate pairing experience and order a charcuterie plate or a bowl of their house-marinated olives while you’re there.
Oxbow Market is a one-of-a-kind place, not to be missed. Whether you are in search of a tasty picnic, great ‘take-out’, fabulous meal provisions, or if you are looking for a bottle of wine, and antique shopping experience, Oxbow will answer all your needs under one roof. Whatever the tempo of your day may be, you’ll find the Oxbow Market a warm, welcoming, delicious experience. Enjoy a glass of wine and an artisan cheese plate with friends while the serene river floats by, grab some scrumptious burgers for the kids or forage the seasonal bounty from the produce stand from local merchants.
Restaurants, pizzerias, coffee bars, cheese shops, and a produce market all share a roof, in an airy, open space that lets you walk between one stall and another, glass of wine in hand. Between The Fatted Calf shop (the charcuterie maker’s first brick-and-mortar location), Model Bakery, Oxbow Produce and Grocery, and Oxbow Cheese Merchant—not to mention the twice-weekly farmers’ market in the parking lot outside—it’s a fine place for food shopping. It’s also an equally fine place to have a meal, whether at one stand or many. Local favorites like Hog Island Oyster Company and Gott’s Roadside (the hamburger stand formerly known as Taylor’s Automatic Refresher) share space with other restaurants and food stands.