Marcy Gordon


  • Sebastopol, California, USA

Marcy Gordon is a correspondent who lives in Sebastopol, and covers Sonoma and Napa for Forbes Travel Guide. Obsessed with travel at an early age, she built a replica of the Kon-Tiki from coconut husks and palm fronds in her backyard when she was nine. She is an editor for Travelers’ Tales and has written for the San Francisco Chronicle, The Travel Guide to California and Authentic Italy guidebooks. She blogs about wine, food and travel on, and her narrative stories have been featured in many anthologies, including Best Women’s Travel Writing.

  • On December 19
    Andy Barker is now following Marcy Gordon
  • On July 2, 2014
    Kaley Johannesson is now following Marcy Gordon
  • On September 30, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What is the best way to get an appointment at The Spa at Bardessono?

    If you’re thinking of enjoying a massage or facial at The Spa at Bardessono, it’s a good idea to book spa time in advance when making your hotel room reservation. The spa inside the LEED Platinum certified hotel is popular with both guests and locals. But if you don’t have a chance to peruse the spa menu until after you arrive, you can also schedule an appointment at the Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa by calling 707-204-6050 or send an email to with your desired time and treatment. If you’re a hotel guest, you may notice that the bathroom in your suite is specially designed to transform into personal spa treatment area. In-room services can be arranged by calling the Napa spa directly or contacting the hotel concierge.
  • On September 23, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    Where is Bardessono Hotel and Spa located?

    Bardessono Hotel and Spa is located in Yountville, California, just a block off the main thoroughfare at 6526 Yount St. Only an hour north of San Francisco, and just minutes outside the town of Napa, Yountville is a tiny burg with more world-class restaurants, wine and shopping per square mile than anywhere else in the valley. The Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star hotel sits on six acres in the heart of Yountville at the beginning of the famed Napa Valley wine region. You’ll find it’s a great location from which to explore Wine Country. When you stay at the centrally located Bardessono, it’s easy to visit the downtown shops and dining options bicycle or on foot. 
  • On September 23, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    Where is Lucy Restaurant and Bar located?

    You’ll find Lucy Restaurant and Bar inside Bardessono Hotel and Spa, a modern, eco-chic retreat at in the tony Napa Valley town of Yountville. Located at 6526 Yount St., Lucy is about an hour’s drive north of San Francisco or Oakland, just off of Highway 29. If you’re coming from San Francisco International Airport, head north on US 101, then take exit 33 and merge on to 37 West toward Napa. Take exit 19 for Highway 29. Follow Highway 29 north past Napa. Take the Yountville/Veterans Home exit and turn right at California Drive. Take the first left onto Washington Street and then turn right at Yount Street. You’ll find the Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Napa restaurant on your right.
  • On June 14, 2013
    Quia Querisma is now following Marcy Gordon
  • On May 15, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What’s happening this weekend in Napa and Sonoma?

    It’s Memorial Day Weekend coming up and besides all the patriotic parades and BBQ’s, here are a few off-beat events also happening Memorial Day weekend in Napa and Sonoma.

    For something out of the ordinary check out The Ukulele Festival in Sebastopol on May 25th.
    The tiny four-string strummer is not just for Don Ho fans anymore—The Ukulele has become hip and Ukulele festivals draw mainstream crowds. The festival is open to all levels with workshops and concerts. And don’t forget to bring your Uke if you have one.

    On Sunday May 26th it’s Oysterpalozza at Rocker Oysterfeller’s in Valley Ford on Highway One. Oyesterpalozza features oysters of course from nearby Tomales Bay, as well as Texas style BBQ. Quench your thirst with local beer from Lagunitas, and a selection of local wines. Plus there will be live music on two stages with performances by Windy Hill Bluegrass, The Crux, Supermule, The Far West, and the Farm Band. Doors open at 11am.
  • On May 15, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What are the best places for private wine tastings in Napa and Sonoma?

    If you are seeking an exclusive tasting experience check out these wineries that provide by appointment only wine tasting and tours in Sonoma and Napa.

    Chalk Hill Estate and Vineyards (Healdsburg)
    A simply gorgeous estate on 1,477 acres, Chalk Hill also has an equestrian center on the property. Private tasting and tours that include a luncheon pairing each of the wines with small plates prepared by the in-house chef can be arranged directly with the winery. 

    Acorn Winery (Healdsburg) – Situated down a dirt lane off Old Redwood Highway, Acorn Winery is making some wonderful vineyard blends from their estate grown vines. If you are a fan of Italian varietals like Sangiovese and Dolcetto, you are in for a treat at Acorn. Call to set up a private tasting at this small family run winery.   

    Ehlers Estate
    Set back from Highway 29 on 43-acres, Ehlers Estate produces Bordeaux varietals on their certified organic and biodynamic vineyards. Best known for their Cabernet Sauvignon "1886", private tastings are available by arrangement in the historic stone winery built by Bernard Ehlers in 1886.
  • On May 13, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What are the best cocktails in Napa and Sonoma?

    House made syrups and foraged herbs for mulling are hallmarks of Wine Country signature cocktails. Here are some of the best cocktails in Napa and Sonoma and where to find them.

    Cocktails here are close to a religious experience. Try one of the carbonated cocktails such as The Carbonated Sidewinder's Fang made with Appleton Estate Reserve Rum, El Dorado 8 Year Demerara Rum, Orange, Lime and Passion Fruit Juices, Co2.  Or go for a creamy delight like the Boom Goes The Dynamite --Bulliet Bourbon, House Pineapple Gum Syrup, Lemon, Barrel Aged Bitters, Egg White. 

    Girl and the Fig – Sonoma
    French bistro inspired aperitifs like the Fig Royale or the Lavender Mojito made with house made syrups are best bets for inspiring memories of springtime in Paris.

    This is the place for the best Japanese inspired cocktails such as the Zen Tea, featuring charbay green tea vodka, jasmine tea, citrus, and mint.

    The little things count here starting with house made tonic and soda water. My suggestion for cocktail perfection—try the Negroni.
  • On May 13, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What are the best nighttime activities in Napa and Sonoma?

    Live music, dancing, theatre, comedy clubs, and opera, are but a few of the nighttime activities happening almost every night of the week in Napa and Sonoma.

    But one of the best nighttime activities is bowling at the Crush Ultra Lounge at the Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa. This is not your father’s old school bowling alley by a long shot, The Crush Ultra Lounge features six luxury bowling lanes and an equally luxe bar menu featuring bowling themed specialty cocktails like the Silver Pin comprised of  Frida Kahlo Silver Tequila, Cointreau and Lime Juice topped with Domaine de Chandon Brut, Served in a Hawaiian Lemon Salt Rimmed Champagne Flute or The Spare made with Fresh Raspberries with Grey Goose Cherry Noir Fresh Lemon Juice, Simple Syrup, Domain de Chandon Brut. 

    For live entertainment check the schedules at the following venues in Napa and Sonoma.
    Napa: Uptown Theater, Napa Valley Opera House, Napa Valley Playhouse
    Sonoma: Wells Fargo Center for the Arts, Back Alley Comedy Club, Main Stage West.
  • On May 12, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What are the best restaurants for lunch in Napa and Sonoma?

    Although the food truck scene is alive and well, nothing beats a full service restaurant for a long leisurely lunch. Here are a few of the best restaurants for lunch in Napa and Sonoma.

    Oxbow Market in Napa is easily the best place to go for lunch in Napa when you don’t know what you want. You’ll find several great options all under one roof including: Kitchen Door, Hog Island Oyster Company, Ca’ Momi, Pica Pica Maize Kitchen and Gotts Roadside right next door. In Yountville, Ad Hoc, and Bouchon are top choices open for lunch. Also of note, newcomer Pear, in Napa, serving southern comfort food classics like mac & cheese, shrimp & grits, and chicken & waffles. If you like a menu full of entrées with ampersands this is for you.

    In Santa Rosa try Three Squares, a casual bistro located in Historic Railroad Square, with many “healthy” but super tasty menu choices. And for your mid-day burger urge, head to Flipside, also in Santa Rosa. Healdsburg Bar and Grill— (Healdsburg) This local favorite serves classic burgers, sandwiches and salads and a must try fish and chips. They have a terrific cocktail menu and a great selection of wines by the glass as well.

    Also check out the listings for Best Brunch and Best Cafes-- all of which are great places for Lunch too.
  • On May 12, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What is the best new restaurant in Napa and Sonoma?

    Bravas Bar de Tapas – (Healdsburg)
    Mark and Terri Stark, recent James Beard award nominees for Outstanding Restaurateur, have done it again, this time with a Spanish flair. Bravas Bar de Tapas brings authentic tapas to Healdsburg. Not just small plates-- theses tapas are the real deal with Iberico ham, Manchego cheese, chorizo, anchovies, sardines, and lots of garlic.  The outdoor patio is just the spot to enjoy a glass of Spanish Cava and pretend you are in Spain.

    Backyard (Forestville)
    Don’t underestimate blink-and-you’ll-miss-it Forestville. Those in the know cite the tiny burg of Forestville as one of the best-kept foodie secrets.  And Backyard is one of the new reasons. Backyard, as the name connotes, is focused on garden fresh fare and a daily changing menu that sources ingredients from community farms, rivers and fields for über local produce and foraged delicacies.

    Redd Wood (Yountville)
    A branch off from the mega-successful restaurant Redd, Redd Wood is the laid-back and less pricy version with a menu that is pizza focused but no less exciting.  Redd Wood features a full bar and serves diner nightly and breakfast and lunch Friday –Sunday only.
  • On May 12, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What’s new in Napa and Sonoma?

    It’s all happening in Sonoma these days and two of the biggest new additions to the scene are SHED in Healdsburg, and The Barlow in Sebastopol.

    SHED is a new multi-purpose market pavilion in the heart of Healdsburg. Billed as a “Modern Grange” SHED aims to showcase the best regional farm products with the goal to inspire, educate, engage and delight visitors and locals about the fundamentals of agriculture, food and wine, and the community’s agrarian roots.

    Two of the most innovative elements of SHED are The Mill and The Fermentation Bar. The onsite mill is used to grind local grains for the daily baked SHED bread and other house-made pastries and baked goods. The Fermentation Bar offers a daily selection of kambucha, beer, wine, cider, and Shrubs—a must try vinegar based fruit drink originally from the Caribbean.

    The Barlow--The butcher, the baker, the candle stick maker: The Barlow, set on the site of a former apple processing factory is a community space and year round market, with shops, restaurants and local producers dedicated to made-on-premises crafts, food, beer and wine. Full grand opening is scheduled for late Summer but several merchants are open now including wine tasting rooms for La Follette and Wind Gap.
  • On May 11, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What are the best day trips near Napa and Sonoma?

    While many visitors think of Napa and Sonoma as one region called “wine country”—the two valleys are actually not that close in proximity. Thus depending where you are staying, Napa and Sonoma actually make for perfect day-trips to each other.

    Point Reyes National Seashore is also an easy day-trip from Napa or Sonoma. On your way stop in the tiny town of Pt. Reyes Station for cheese at Cowgirl Creamery and assorted picnic fixings, then head directly to Hog Island Oyster Company and grab a picnic table right on Tomales Bay for a feast of fresh shucked bivalves harvested daily from the oyster farm. Be sure to reserve your table well in advance, as Hog Island is extremely popular.

    Mendocino County is another great destination filled with options from wine tasting to beach combing, brew pup hopping, or even riding a railway wonder called the Skunk Train through the redwoods.  But there's so much to see and do in Mendocino, you may want to make it a two-day trip.
  • On May 11, 2013
    Marcy Gordon answered the question: Marcy Gordon

    What are the best cafes in Napa and Sonoma?

    When you seek a hearty breakfast or lunch with quality food and a down home atmosphere, check out these cafes in Napa and Sonoma.

    Gypsy Café – Sebastopol—Gypsy Café offers modern comfort food in a “urban salvage” setting with exposed brick walls and hardwood floors. The original Old Pine Cone neon sign out front guides the way to Breakfast served all day starting at 8:30am and Lunch daily from 11:00 -2:30 pm. My favorite wake up dish is the Sebastobowl --2 eggs any style, sautéed new potatoes, garlic wilted greens & toasted hemp seeds w/toast. {Yes, hemp seeds. It’s Sebastopol—hemp is practically one of the four food groups here.} Also great—the buttermilk pancakes available in full and short stack or the gluten free Swedish Pancakes.

    Gillwoods Café –Gillwoods Café has two locations—St. Helena and Napa Town Center. Both offer fresh bakery goods made daily on the premises and homemade down home classics such as hearty egg scrambles for breakfast and a selection of toasted or grilled sandwiches, salads, and soups for lunch.