Friday, July 20, 2012

Review: Napa Festival del Sole

In July, we drove to Napa, California to see the Festival del Sole, which featured ballet from a famous Russian ballet company. I am not a big fan of ballet, so I found the ballet performances a bit uninteresting, but Inna really liked them. Our other friends also really enjoyed the various dances.

While in Napa, we stayed for two days at the Blackbird InnBlackbird Inn is a two story house that is used as a bed-and-breakfast. 

We found the food to be quite ordinary and the selection quite small. The room cost is also quite high for the quality of room and food included. We don't recommend staying there again.

Inna and Irina at Hurley's Restaurant, Yountville, having dinner after the Festval del Sole.
Hurley's is a good restaurant, but I don't recall being amazed by any particular dish.

On the next day, July 21, we checked out of our Blackbird Inn and drove to the nearby Oxbow Public Market for breakfast. The breakfast fare at Blackbird Inn was really not sufficient for a normal breakfast.

We walked around and explored the many interesting shops of the Oxbow Public Market

We ordered coffee and then later tea from Tillerman Tea

The tea and coffee there is really quite delicious. 

Oxbow Public Market has lots of other small shops and restaurants and is a great place for healthy food, coffee or tea.

On the way back to San Jose, we stopped by in Yountville, at the Bouchon Bakery

The Bouchon bakery is run by the same chef of French Laundry fame and is supposed to be quite good.

However, although all the pastries we tried were good, they were not as good as the ones we have in Fleur de Cocoa bakery,in Los Gatos.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Mini Cooper S "Chili"

Today, I purchased a 2009 MINI Cooper S Convertible "Chili. It's a red 6-speed convertible with a turbocharged engine.

It's a fun car, but a bit quirky. The window up/down switches are on the center console and the fuel gauge is a rainbow looking indicator. There is also an instrument to tell how long the top was down.

The Mini has a bit of pep but it's nowhere near as fast my previous two motorcycles: Honda VFR800fi and Honda CBR1000RR.