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View Full Version : Going to Napa Valley/San Francisco



DreamTheater
08-21-2012, 18:50
First off, credit and thanks where it is due: the members of this forum are really helpful and I thank you for both past, present and future advice.

As per the title, I am headed out there from my home Omaha, NE. I am planning on going to Charbay as it is. Are there any other microdistilleries in the areas around Napa and San Francisco? Alternatively, is there a liquor store or two in San Francisco that are really worth stopping by to get some rare stuff? I am just as much into scotch as I am bourbon so I'd love any advice about bourbons in the area as well as single malt whiskeys.

Look very forward to your advice!

LostBottle
08-21-2012, 19:58
You might want to try and call Anchor Distilling - tell them you are a huge whiskey fan and see if they can get you into a tour of the distillery which makes some interesting rye. I know they usually don't do tours except for private events, but it is worth a try.

The Whisky Shop on Sutter St. has some good single malts. For both bourbon and single malts, Cask is a nice store with a good selection; the staff also seems to know their whisk(e)y - prices On some things are a little on the high side. Healthy Spirits has a really good selection, but be advised that the prices rival eBay.

If you want to check out a bar or two, Rickhouse and Bourbon & Branch are worth a shot.

SF is a great city, enjoy your trip!

Trey Manthey
08-22-2012, 07:01
K&L is a must visit. Great prices, knowledgeable staff, and always something interesting on the shelf.

San Francisco has more whiskey hobbyists per capita than any other city in the world, so rare stuff is near impossible to find.

Tucker
08-22-2012, 08:19
Cask (http://www.caskstore.com/) is an interesting whiskey shop and I'll second the K&L recommendation.

yountvillewjs
08-22-2012, 08:34
Not sure where Charbay is going to take you (the winery is on top of Spring Mountain), but if it is into the Napa/Sonoma area -- I'd recommend stopping by Bottle Barn & Russian River Brew Co (if you like beer). Bottle Barn has the nicest stuff in Wine Country, but can't hold a candle to places like K & L.

Gillman
08-22-2012, 09:48
Check out Jepson up in Ukiah, north of Healdsburg on the 101. They make fine brandy and after all, brandy, made from grapes, is more traditional to the area than whiskey (not to exclude any whiskey of course from purchase as well).

Gary

DreamTheater
08-26-2012, 01:35
Thank you for the advice all! I've ordered stuff from K&L before and have been very happy. Is there just one location or are there many? If the latter, then which one should I make sure to go to? I really dont want to do too much running around in San Fran.

sutton
08-26-2012, 06:04
Thank you for the advice all! I've ordered stuff from K&L before and have been very happy. Is there just one location or are there many? If the latter, then which one should I make sure to go to? I really dont want to do too much running around in San Fran.

You can see on their website, but I think there are 3 - San Fran, Redwood City, and Hollywood - I think the main one is Redwood City and is not far from SF if that is where you'll be (just south on the 101 a bit, maybe 25 miles?)

tigerlam92
08-26-2012, 09:02
Thank you for the advice all! I've ordered stuff from K&L before and have been very happy. Is there just one location or are there many? If the latter, then which one should I make sure to go to? I really dont want to do too much running around in San Fran.

If K&L, you can check inventory between the different location on their website and see which one match your preference on specific bottle offering.

Cheers
--Hugh

OscarV
08-26-2012, 09:12
You have got to check this place out, Bourbon And Branch, it's like a classic speakeasy, reservations only, also their other place Tradition.
http://www.bourbonandbranch.com/

berto
08-27-2012, 14:06
St. George is across the bay in Alameda.

Ledger's in Berkeley has a nice selection. Private bottlings too.

DreamTheater
08-30-2012, 09:11
I am going to K&L and Cask. Hopefully fill out some of my Benriach collection (if you are like me and like to have really unique and complex whisky, then Benriach with some of their cask finishes is over the top).

I really, REALLY wanted to thank the recommender of Bourbon & Branch. That place sounds absolutely amazing and I'm going to try and make a reservation asap. Really hope I can get in.

OscarV
08-30-2012, 14:04
I really, REALLY wanted to thank the recommender of Bourbon & Branch.


You're welcome.

.

yountvillewjs
08-30-2012, 17:24
I really, REALLY wanted to thank the recommender of Bourbon & Branch. That place sounds absolutely amazing and I'm going to try and make a reservation asap. Really hope I can get in.

Get into the password side if possible and enjoy -- it's a great place.

DreamTheater
08-31-2012, 05:57
I did! got my password and all that jazz. The only downside - i'm going on wednesday night pretty late. I'm not surprised though a little disappointed that Thursday and Friday night were absolutely booked. Hopefully there is not too much of a "B" team working on the non-weekend evenings.

VAGentleman
08-31-2012, 07:38
I'd also highly recommend the Broken Record. Its a dive bar with over 300 whiskeys with several on tap (including Four Roses). They also have some of the best food you'll have in the City. Be forewarned cash only. http://brokenrecordsanfrancisco.com/

Kalessin
08-31-2012, 09:16
I know I'm really late to the recommendations party, but if you're travelling around the SF Bay, Napa and Sonoma, I recommend a stop by author Jack London's ranch in Sonoma and the still-gaslit bar where he studied and self-taught before he tried going to college, Heinold's First and Last Chance Saloon in Oakland (still in its original 1880 building).

The ranch features the remnants of "Wolf House", the mansion he built that was destroyed by fire two weeks before the family moved in, a smaller stone house that was built by his wife Charmian, the remnants of some of his agricultural efforts (none of which really worked out), and the cottage where he died, all very well preserved.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_London_State_Historic_Park
http://firstandlastchance.com/hew/history.html

Tony
08-31-2012, 14:59
If you get a chance St. George's is cool. They make some really tasty stuff and have a tasting room so you can see what you like.

http://www.stgeorgespirits.com/

Best regards, Tony

DreamTheater
09-09-2012, 19:27
Thanks again all. Some of these I simply did not get to as I checked this thread too late.

But I did go to Bourbon and Branch...OH MY GOD. Seriously. I am a fanatic for old school cocktails. Colorado bulldogs, margaritas, etc are all tasty but they are not legit in my opinion. These drinks were inspired from On High. I drank 8 drinks there over two nights and I cannot wait to return. If ever anyone i know goes to San Fran, I will insist they go to B&B. And I would not have known about it but for you guys. God bless as you made my whole trip. Wine country is great and i liked it a lot but B&B is the best drinking experience i've had in my whole life.

And I drink not in quantity but in regularity. A lot.

Trey Manthey
09-10-2012, 11:46
It's hard to beat the quality of their drinks. If you can remove yourself from the rigmarole of getting a reservation and some of the more pretentious staff.

I forgot to mention Alembic on Haight as a worthwhile stop for excellent cocktails. Less formal, and excellent food to boot.

dantodd
09-23-2012, 16:44
I forgot to mention Alembic on Haight as a worthwhile stop for excellent cocktails. Less formal, and excellent food to boot.

Best Pisco Sour EVER!

JLH3
09-23-2012, 20:12
There is a resturant in SF called the Elite Cafe'. Amazing cajun food.