I volunteered to co-partner with my friend, Jill, to be in charge of the monthly tours for my garden club. This month we chose to go to Copia, Napa with is the sister company to the world famous Greystone Culinary Institute of America. If you like food you have probably seen cooking classes on the Food TV Network from Greystone located in the golden green hills of St. Helena.
Being amongst avid cooks I thought this would be a perfect fit for the garden club. We were supposed to meet the head gardener at 10:30 am so he could show us the restaurant’s farm to table garden.
Three ladies arrived at my house at 8:50 to head up to Napa which is 36 miles north. The day before our departure I checked the weather. Rain overnight, clearing in the morning. Some of the gals wanted to bale because of the potential storm headed right towards us.
I sent an email out saying that we are going Rain or Shine.
The ladies got into my car and it was pouring rain. Getting onto the freeway was like going through a bathtub of gray water. The sky ceiling was low. We were engulfed in gray.
Walls of water painted the sides of my car as big trucks screamed past our four door sedan.
Would we ever get to Napa? And on time?
We crawled through the Bay Area traffic, over the Martinez bridge onto an expansive highway with little traffic.
As we pulled into the Copia parking lot an hour and a half later, the head gardener was waiting for us. He was a thin, young, mid-thirties guy. Very nice.
The rain stopped!
We had a full hour with Matthew and John, the Chef, without rain as we wandered through rows of vibrant green and red lettuces, strong stalks of brococili, radishes, carrots and olive trees laden with plump, black olives.
Matthew explained how important it is to have an ‘over winter crop’ to plow into the vegetable garden in the Spring. The winter crop was a seed mix of vetch, peas, oats and barley. He went into microbial detail of how the whole eco system of a garden works.
Needless to say, we learned alot about Organic Gardening in that entertaining and informative hour.
Then it started to rain again.
We hustled inside to the restaurant where a long table for 12 awaited us. We dined, quickly because we had a pasta class to attend. At 12:30, when the class was about to start, we were just paying our bills and having leftovers boxed up.
I ran to the pasta class to let the instructor know we were running late. She said she preferred to start on time. Oopps . . .
We paid our bills and ran to the class. The instructor held the class.
Glasses of Merlot were placed at each setting along with four recipe cards for sauces, and a description of how to make pasta.
The instructor was fun and causal.
(Since I have an online business I’m able to travel to places most people can only travel to on the weekends.)
You can see my Copia Tour in Napa that I shared on a Facebook LIVE a couple of nights ago by clicking here. Give the video a minute to load up correctly. Enjoy!