I’m admittedly not a big New Year’s Eve person. By the time Dec. 31 rolls around, I’m burnt out from the previous six weeks of holiday celebrations, and have little desire to get dressed up and go out, when the bubbly tastes just as good from my couch. Hence, my husband and I unintentionally started a tradition two years ago of seeing the new Star Wars movie on New Year’s Eve night, and this year might be no different. Lame, I know.
But, if you do still have some energy left, cheers to you. In the spirit of the upcoming midnight countdown, we’re counting down 10 ways to ring in 2018 in Napa Valley.
Blue Note Napa
Blue Note Napa’s New Year’s Eve dinner show includes a three-course meal paired with a special solo acoustic performance from jazz/funk legend Brian Culbertson (founder of Napa Valley Jazz Fest and proud owner of the craziest hair style ever). After dinner, head upstairs to the JaM Cellars Ballroom for the rockin’ full band performance. Tickets start at $249 per person, or $69 for ballroom show only and $99 for dinner show only.
1030 Main St., Napa, www.bluenotenapa.com
Charlie Palmer Steakhouse &
the Archer Hotel
Spend New Year’s Eve in Napa’s newest hot spot and celebrate the fact that The Archer Hotel is finally—FINALLY—completed and open for business. If you haven’t stopped in for a peek yet, you should know that there’s not a better venue around for a fancy end-of-year affair, IMO. Come for the buffet dinner and stay for the party, featuring live music, hors d’oeuvres and of course, champagne. Tickets cost $225 for both, or $75 for the party only.
1260 First St., Napa, www.charliepalmersteak.com/locations/napa
If you’re that person that alway falls asleep before the ball drops, this might be the event for you. JaM Cellars in downtown Napa is hosting “A Toast-y New Year’s Eve Brunch,” creatively named for their sparkling wine label Toast. From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. they’ll be serving up bottomless Toast-mosas for $25 and offering food from their neighbor Tarla. The JaM staff will also vote on the best New Year’s resolution. If you win, you get complimentary use of event space for a “non-dry January party,” so that they can keep the party going into 2018 (even if you’ve dropped your resolution already).
1460 First St., Napa, www.jamcellars.com
Napa Valley Wine Train
Ride into 2018 aboard the Napa Valley Wine Train. This special New Year’s Eve Dinner Train ($229 per person) includes a welcome glass of bubbly and appetizers of cheese, charcuterie and poached shrimp. While you journey from Yountville to St. Helena and back—admiring the holiday lights along the way—you’ll make the last meal of the year one to remember with a four-course gourmet menu. The train returns to the station at 9:30 p.m., but you can then head right across the river to downtown Napa and seek out a place to party until midnight (like Cadet, which is next on this list).
1275 McKinstry St., Napa, www.winetrain.com
They had me at champagne carts served dim sum-style, caviar bombs and the $20 ticket price ($15 pre-sale). Downtown Napa’s Cadet Wine + Beer Bar is throwing a New Year’s Eve Celebration complete with the above, plus a DJ and dancing. If you’ve ever been to one of their Halloween parties, you know they’re likely to go all out for their 2017 send off. Next day hangover: very likely.
930 Franklin St., Napa, www.cadetbeerandwinebar.com
The Westin Verasa + BANK Cafe and Bar
The Westin’s Sixth Annual New Year’s Eve Gala Dinner features a champagne reception, hors d’oeuvres and a six course dinner with sommelier-selected wine pairings at Michelin-starred La Toque. Then you can head to BANK Cafe and Bar for a DJ and dancing, complimentary sweet bites, no-host cocktails and a midnight toast at the Red Tie Affair after party. Tickets for the entire night cost $300 (plus $100 more for the wine pairings), or $75 for the party only.
1314 McKinstry St, Napa, www.westinnapa.com
Silverado Resort & Spa
I strongly suggest not partying on an empty stomach, so before heading over to the Mansion’s New Year’s Eve party with a Moet and Chandon Lounge, DJ and dancing, balloon drop, sparkling toast and party favors, reserve a seating at The Grill and full up on a three-course meal. The menu starts with a lobster bisque in a puff pastry, features filet mignon for its main course (with the option to add a lobster tail), and a chocolate and saffron pot de crème for dessert. Tickets for the party are $35, or included with your dinner at The Grill, which is $90 per person, $30 ages 9 and under.
1600 Atlas Peak Rd., Napa, www.silveradoresort.com
Goose & Gander
The speakeasy setting at Goose & Gander is made for a 1920s prohibition-style New Year’s party. Ladies, here’s your chance to repurpose that elaborately-beaded flapper frock from several Halloween’s ago, and men, a night to dapper it up with a pocket watch and fedora. Choose from either a 6:30 or 9:30 p.m. 5-course dinner seating ($165 per person, plus $85 optional wine pairing), and sip unique craft cocktails while enjoying live ragtime music from none other than Molly Ringwald’s dad, Bob Ringwald. Stay for the after party (included with dinner ticket or $40 for the party only), featuring dancing and local spin doctor Rotten Robbie.
1245 Spring St., St. Helena, www.gooseandgander.com
Just a few blocks down from Goose & Gander, St. Helena’s newest wine bar The Saint is throwing a competing 20s-themed party with their Gatsby New Year’s Eve Bash. For $35, dance to Electro Swing (whatever the hell that means) by DJ Flamingeaux (best name ever). There will also be a photo booth, balloon drop and champagne toast at midnight, and “glitter and sequins” are strongly encouraged.
1351 Main St., St. Helena, www.thesaintnapavalley.com
Downtown Joe’s Brewery
Another Roaring 20s New Year’s Eve bash—I’m sensing a trend here—will unfold in Napa at Downtown Joe’s Brewery, featuring champagne specials, a photo booth, balloon drop, party favors and dancing to DJ Relly Rel. Cover charge is $10, but you can put that towards a drink if you come in costume.
902 Main St., Napa, www.downtownjoes.com
For those who prefer to stay in (like me), get a good night’s rest and awake hangover-free, there are a few New Year’s Day events happening around town.
The Napa Valley Resolution Run will help you kick 2018 off with a running start (see what I did there?), with a 5k or 10k throughout Yountville. Proceeds from your registration ($35 adults, $30 youth) will go to the Napa Valley Vine Trail. www.naparesolutionrun.com
Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch is hosting a New Year’s Day brunch, featuring restaurant favorites like their estate grass-fed beef and smoked pork hash, a 12-hour pulled pork sandwich and biscuits and gravy. 738 Main St., St. Helena, www.longmeadowranch.com
The Meritage Resort and Spa will be playing the Rose Bowl during a New Year’ Day Sparkling Brunch at Siena ($50 per person), featuring mimosas and their famous Bloody Mary Bar, omelets, waffles and pancakes, seafood and more. 875 Bordeaux Way, Napa, www.meritageresort.com