When in Napa…

2 years ago by

In Partnership With Lo & Sons

Until last month I had actually never been to Napa despite growing up in California. To tell you the truth, I wasn’t sure if Napa was north, south, east, or west of San Francisco. Okay, I knew it wasn’t west of San Francisco otherwise it’d be in the ocean. Well, now after spending a week in Napa with the lovely model and vintner, Michele Ouellet (who grew up there!), I feel like I have a pretty good grasp on Napa, and a little town within Napa called Yountville. With the immense help of Michele we were able to put together a weekend guide to Napa and Yountville.

And of course no trip is complete without the perfect bag to accompany you throughout the day while you explore, wander, eat, and yes, of course, drink – we are in Napa after all! We were thrilled to partner with Lo & Sons to not only use their bags to help us navigate through our trip, but to introduce you to their two new spring colors, Sand and Rose Quartz.

Lo & Sons is a family first business started by a mother (Helen) and her two sons (Jan and Derek). When Helen’s sons watched yet again as their mother discarded yet another travel bag she wasn’t satisfied with, they finally encouraged her to design one on her own. Thus, Lo & Sons was born and with it, a line of perfect travel bags that help you stay organized and fashionable while on the road.

Alright, who’s ready for a weekend getaway?

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet


Michele wears the Waverley 2 Small in Rose Quartz from Lo & Sons

Have you ever been on an electric bike? Well, I hadn’t until this trip and now that’s basically all I want to do from morning till night. They go about as fast as a scooter which is both terrifying and exhilarating. I’m telling you all this because I highly recommend you rent an electric bike to take you from vineyard to vineyard or to simply wander through the backroads of Napa. We rented ours from Yountville Bike Rentals, who also offer guided vineyard tours and a picnic for you to enjoy with your wine.

I also highly recommend you park your bike for a second, grab a coffee at Southside (and a croissant while you’re at it!) and take a stroll through the French Laundry Gardens. The gardens service the famed French Laundry Restaurant and are right across the street and open to the public.

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

Michele wears the Pearl in Sand from Lo & Sons

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

Our first meal of the day was at Gott’s Roadside, per Michele’s recommendation. From the look of Gott’s I was planning on ordering a hamburger, because it just screamed roadside hamburger-fries-milkshake joint in the best of ways. Michele, thankfully, stepped in and ordered for us. Specifically the crispy fish tacos, which consist of ahi tuna, in crispy taco shells. The moral of this story is, never doubt Michele’s judgement when it comes to Napa. (Although I did still order some fries because c’mon… fries!!!)

Bouchon. Bouchon. Bouchon. Everyone we ran into kept asking if we’d been to Bouchon. What the hell is so magical about Bouchon? Well. Everything. I could go on and on about the meal itself, but I am someone who judges a restaurant on their bread and butter, and this was some of the best bread and butter I’ve ever had (it’s the little things, no?)

The best part was we were able to sample Michele’s own wine label, Lorenza, that she produces with her mom! It’s a light, easily drinkable rose that went down wayyy too quickly :)

And just for my own pure enjoyment I have to give a shout out to Panchas. It’s a dive bar in the middle of Younteville that is the perfect antidote when you’re tired of drinking wine. At Panchas you can stop in, have a beer with the locals, and play a game of pool.

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

Michele wears the Waverley 2 Small in Rose Quartz from Lo & Sons (as belt)

Every time I travel somewhere I like to bring back a bottle of hot sauce — yes, hot sauce. (Okay, I also brought back wine from this trip… when in Rome…) But seriously, hot sauce from different regions is fascinating to me and always tells you so much about the local culture.

Of course Michele knew exactlllyy where to take us to, not only peruse the hot sauce selection, but also to find a full assortment of local goods: Oakville Grocery. Beyond quenching my hot sauce obsession, you can pick up a selection of meat and cheeses, of course a bottle of wine or two, as well as a variety of other local necessities.

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet

Michele wears The Leather Wallet in Sand from Lo & Sons

Michele left us with a little wine lesson as we walked through the vineyards near her home. Beyond just different types of grapes, there are many, many ways in which to train a grape vine to grow and each training system offers different benefits that are tasted in the final product of the wine. The vines you see in this photo are old vines which are always non-trellised (meaning they have no wires or framework to help them grow) and they’re typically much more gnarled in appearance.

I can’t say that I’ll be becoming a sommelier any time soon and / or ever, BUT I do have a new appreciation for the craft and care that goes into every single glass of wine I enjoy. Despite no sommelier status in my future, I will be going out of my way to take another trip to Napa soon.

atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet
atelier dore lo & sons napa Michele Ouellet
When in Napa…

Michelle wears the Pearl in Sand from Lo & Sons


Add yours
  • Great story. Hoping to make it out to Napa this summer and will follow these leads! (The bags are also gorgeous…)

  • What are those red sandals she’s wearing with jeans and white cardigan?

    And of course, yay rose!

  • Naydeline May, 15 2019, 7:29 / Reply

    Love this story, and the Lo & Sons bags are gorgeous! Adding Napa to my list of must-see places in California.

  • We had such an incredible time out in Wine Country – highly recommend! & having Lo & Sons with us added a perfect touch! xx

  • well now I definitely need to make it out to Napa! been dying to get out there forever. and now i’ve got the perfect list of things to do (also need to get myself one of the Lo & Sons bags– so beautiful!

  • Mary Leonard May, 16 2019, 11:25

    It’s amazing! Definitely try to plan a trip out there and let us know if you need recommendations! Also, if you are a first time purchaser on Lo & Sons site, you can get 15% off! xx

  • Joelle May, 18 2019, 9:32 / Reply

    Can you share sources for the denim she wears in the pics please?

  • I literally felt in love with the bags Lo &Sons! Thank you so much for this discovery ! The choice will be very difficult as it seems that I could wear one of them for any circumstance: travel, work.. Thank you again!

  • Sapna Rathi May, 22 2019, 2:11 / Reply

    Loved the article and the bags!
    I’ll be in Napa this summer for a wedding and just ordered the Waverely!
    Can’t wait to check out your recs too!
    Thank you!!

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