Just a quick thirty minutes east of Sacramento, on your way to the Napa Valley, you’ll find the town of Winters, CA. It might seem like a place just to pass through, but I have kept hearing great things about it whether it’s how adorable the town is, the quality of the restaurants, or how welcoming everyone is.
So I recently decided I needed a little staycation and to take a couple days exploring the town and the area around it.
After this trip, all I know is that I’m already planning a trip back to visit with friends.
In this small town you can find just about everything that makes Northern California great. You have cute vintage buildings, delicious farm to fork food, local wines and brews, breathtaking places to get outdoors, and amazing locals who just want to share their hometown with you.
Note: Thank you to The Abbey House Inn for hosting my trip to the area. As always, all opinions remain my own.
Spend the Night in Downtown Winters
If you’re staying a night or two in Winters, CA you’ll want to stay right in town and in a place that gives you the feel of the area. You’ll find The Abbey House Inn is just that.
As you drive up you’ll quickly spot this 1905 cottage turned Inn is the perfect spot to rest your head as you explore the area.
Just a few blocks from the main part of the historic downtown of Winters this is a great way to explore the area without having to deal with commuting.
As soon as you’ll step inside though, you’ll want to spend your evening relaxing right on property. The rooms are filled with such beautiful details from the ceilings to the floors.
All while the Abbey House Inn is filled with a vintage feel you aren’t lacking for any modern amenities. My room included a working fireplace, flat screen TV, and cozy rooms to name a few things.
Wake Up & Relax in a Vintage Inn
In the morning at The Abbey House Inn, you’ll want to pop out and enjoy the beautiful porch where you can enjoy a cup of coffee, tea, and a muffin that are available in the modern kitchen guests have full use of.
I loved taking my cup of coffee out on the porch, watching folks wander into town, and enjoy the smell of the orange blossoms coming from the garden.
If the weather isn’t perfect, which it often is, you’ll also want to relax inside. In the living room space, the Inn again does a great job balancing the historic feel of the building with modern luxuries. Those vintage couches are pretty darn comfy.
Explore Historic Downtown Winters, CA
As great at the The Abbey House Inn is. You won’t want skip exploring Historic Downtown Winters right around the corner.
We’ll get to all the good restaurants and tasting rooms, but before that, you’ll want to wander the streets themselves. Take in the building from different area and the cute shops.
You’ll also find Putah Creek is just a block from the Historic Downtown. Here you can wander a trail along the creek for a while and even make your way down to the Green River Brewing & Taproom that sits right above the river.
Eat Your Way Around Winters
The problem with only having a short visit to Winters is that you can only try so many of the delicious spots to eat in town. This is one of the reasons I’ll be heading back soon to the area. The locals I met recommended a handful of places I didn’t even have a chance to try!
You can swing by the Putah Creek Cafe for any meal. Whether you’re looking for a tasty diner breakfast, a delicious sandwich or burger for lunch, or one of their pizzas from their pizza over for dinner.
Or make your way over to Ficelle for some delicious tapas and sangria. I’d had locals recommend the crab enchilada and it did not disappoint.
For a delicious steak dinner, you’ll want to make your way to Buckhorn Steakhouse. If you’re looking for a nice dinner out this is a great place. Or you can pop into their bar side for their late night happy hour and get something a little more casual. Their tri-tip nachos were exactly what I needed after a day of exploring.
Get a Taste of the Local Wines & Beers
As soon as you start trying the wines you wouldn’t be surprised to find out that Winters, California is just on the other side of some hills from the Napa Valley.
You’ll find a wide range of varietals that do well in the area and winemakers that are putting their own twist on things.
Plus, there are two tasting rooms downtown that allow you to enjoy the wines without having to jump in the car.
Right off the main corner of downtown you’ll find the Turkovich Family Wines tasting room. They walk a neat balance of being a tasting room during the day and a restaurant in the evening. Whenever you have a chance to visit you’ll enjoy a chance to get to know their wines.
I was lucky enough to stop by on a perfect spring day and enjoyed sitting on their patio tasting their whites and rose. I particularly enjoyed their Viognier and their Roussanne.
You’ll also want to stop by Berryessa Gap Vineyards. They have a tasting room right downtown or you can head to the winery on HWY 128 just a few minutes drive from the Abbey House Inn. Both locations give you a chance to taste their range of wines.
I was particularly impressed by their whites. Each one was a pleasantly surprising twist on the varietal.
One of the things about wine country, is you’re likely to find some delicious craft brewers as well. And this stands true for winters.
You’ll want to visit Berryessa Brewing Company on HWY 128. You can sit down on the covered outdoor patio, take in the view, and taste your way through their beers.
Start with a taster and get a chance to try their wide variety of brews. They also pretty much always have a food truck on location so you can grab a bite as well.
You’ll also want to stop by the new brewery in Downtown Winters. Pop by Hooby Brewing which offers everything from a stout to a hazy IPA to an Amber. You’ll also want to try one of their waffle sandwiches.
Get Outdoors and Take a Hike
Another great thing about Winters, CA is how easy it is to get outside and enjoying some of the natural beauty of this part of Northern California. Whether you’re looking for a hike or getting out on the water you can do it just a short drive from downtown Winters.
Head up to the Stebbins Cold Canyon area that overlooks Lake Berryessa. Here you’ll find a breathtaking trail that might be on the strenuous side but is entirely worth it. Take the Homestead/Blue Ridge Loop for about a 5-mile hike. But do make sure to get out early and bring a lot of water since you’ll be sweating as you hike up either direction on this loop.
If you’re looking for something outdoors but maybe not a strenuous hike there are some great options. Head over to the Lake Solano County Park for river access and some shorter trails.
Or you can head over to Lake Berryessa itself. Head out on a boat, take one of the trails along the lake, or if the water is high you can go find the “Glory Hole” which is a pretty neat site.
You’ll Feel at Home on Your Visit to Winters, CA
As soon as I arrived at The Abbey House Inn I felt instantly at home. It was the coziness of the Inn itself to start it off.
Then as soon as I started exploring the historic downtown I met locals who were welcoming and chatty. Wherever I stopped I ended up chatting with folks who were from Winters and nearby. They all shared why they loved the town so much and that they were so glad I’d taken the time to visit.
Whether it’s a day or a weekend you’ll want to make sure to stop in Winters, CA for a chance to explore everything it offers.