Join us for this “insider’s” tour to Napa Valley’s elite small wineries, great kitchens and homes, limited to just 12 attendees. Highlighting the program are five participation cooking classes taught by well-known Napa chefs including Hugh. In addition, Hugh and his wife, photographer Teri Sandison, are the hosts for every event throughout the week. The programs are created for travelers wanting to combine a learning vacation with free time to pursue their own interests while in Napa Valley. More than 1,800 food and wine lovers have attended “camps” during the last 26 years, and many are returning “graduates.” Between our scheduled events, you’ll have time to take the “cure” at a luxurious spa, visit artists’ studios, explore the historic towns of Yountville and St. Helena, and dine at Napa Valley’s great restaurants. Join us for an opening night party at one of Napa Valley's best restaurants, and then treat yourself to five more days in one of the world’s great wine and food regions.

Upcoming 2018 dates: July 15-20 and September 30-October 5

How to get to Napa: Napa Valley is approximately 50 miles northeast of San Francisco. If you fly into San Francisco (or Oakland or Sacramento, the closest airports), we recommend you rent a car at the airport. We will provide a list of recommended lodging and directions.

Hugh Carpenter’s Camp Napa classes are created for the independent traveler wanting to combine a cooking vacation with plenty of free time to pursue their own interests while in Napa Valley or in San Miguel, Mexico. Features include lunches, receptions and dinners, as listed in the class itineraries. Airfare, hotel accommodations, car rental, and other items not described are not included.

Camp Napa tour price per tour member: $3,495 ($500 deposit required with balance due 90 days before class begins). Payments may be made through PayPal or by personal check. Please call (707) 252-9773 to register.

Class Itinerary

Sunday: Reception and Dinner at Brix Restaurant
This evening we gather at the beautiful Brix Restaurant located just north of the town of Yountville. Gathering on the lawn overlooking their extensive gardens, we'll enjoy an array of appetizers and wines. Then as the sun sets, we'll ajourn to a private cottage for a dinner cooked especially for us by their head chef. Old friends will meet and new friends are made as Hugh and Teri review the exciting programs planned for each day.

Monday: Morning Cooking Class and Lunch at a Napa Valley Estate, Afternoon Wine Tasting and Tour at a Cult Winery
This morning we meet at a newly constructed winery estate built by long-time students of Hugh's. We'll tour the estate, hear about realizing their Napa dream, and enjoy an informal appetizer party and lunch matched with great Napa Valley wines. Conducting the participation cooking class is one of Napa Valley's most talented chefs and cooking teachers, Morgan Robinson. Part of our program for the last five years, Morgan brings a sense of excitment into the kitchen that makes cooking so much fun. His all-new recipes are easy yet packed with complex flavors. The theme of the class is Modern Cooking, including sous vide techniques. Afternoon is free. Later in the afternoon we visit a tiny "cult" winery with the tour led by the dynamic owner. We'll hear his inspiring personal story, how he established the winery, and his many charity causes. This visit is a rare opportunity. The winery is open only for charities, and we have made a donation in order to make our visit possible. Evening free.

Tuesday: Cooking Class and Lunch at Hall Winery, Late Afternoon Visit to Round Pond Winery

This morning we meet at Kathryn and Craig Hall's spectacular winery just south of the town of St. Helena. A historic Napa Valley winery originally founded in 1885, today Hall Winery has a striking contemporary design and wine-making facility that produces some of Napa Valley's most highly acclaimed Cabernets. Our participation cooking class is taught by Chef Sarah Scott, formerly the long-time Executive Chef at the Robert Mondavi Winery. This is the fifth year that Sarah has been part of Camp Napa's program. An enthusiastic teacher, her all-new recipes are innovative and the food is delicious. Afternoon free. Late in the afternoon we meet at the beautiful Round Pond Winery designed by renowned architect Sandy Walker. We tour and taste throughout the winery and its culinary gardens, including wines paired with small bites. Concluding the tour is a complete overview of everything one needs to know about making olive oil, highlighted with an Estate Olive Oil tasting. Evening free.

Wednesday: Morning Cooking Class and Lunch at Cakebread Cellars Dancing Bear Ranch, Afternoon at Stags' Leap Winery
This morning we are invited by the Cakebread family for a morning cooking class at their amazing Howell Mountain property, Dancing Bear Vineyard. It is located 1,600 feet above the valley floor overlooking the vineyards of Napa Valley. This property is never open to the public, and here we have the opportunity to do a full-participation cooking class taught by their long-time winery chef, Brian Streeter. He is a gifted teacher and coauthor of the two Cakebread Cellars cookbooks. These are all new recipes. After preparing the food under his guidance, we are seated at a long table, overlooking all of Napa Valley, to savor the food and drink Cakebread Dancing Bear Ranch Reserve Cabernet. Late in the afternoon we meet at one of Napa Valley's great historic wineries, Stags' Leap Winery. Open only by invitation, this is a hidden gem in the highly acclaimed Stags' Leap District. We tour the property and then gather in the 19th-century stone mansion to taste their wines. Evening free.

Thursday: Cooking Class and Lunch at the Beringer Winery Hudson House with Chef Matt Ramirez, Afternoon Visit to Davis Estates Winery
This morning we meet at the culinary center at Beringer Winery located in their historic 19th-century Hudson House. Many of the nation's top chefs have cooked here, including cookbook author Madeline Kamman and Chef Gary Danko. Today we have the chance to cook under the direction of their inspiring Executive Chef Matt Ramirez, formerly chef at Bottega and Etoile Restaurants. His food is memorable, and he is a fantastic teacher. We taste older vintages and can buy wines at a discount. This is a rare opportunity. This afternoon we meet at one of Napa's most striking new wineries, Davis Estates. The winery was designed by the famous architect, Howard Backen. We tour the winery, set against the eastern foothills near Calistoga, including the bautiful caves, and then taste their remarkable wines as we overlook the vineyards. Evening free.

Friday: Cooking Class and Lunch at Cakebread Cellars, Graduation Dinner at Hugh and Teri's Home
This morning Hugh teaches a participation cooking class at Cakebread Cellars. Jack and Dolores, and son, Bruce Cakebread, and their families, are much loved in Napa Valley, and we are fortunate to be their guests at the winery. Every top chef in America has cooked in their wonderful kitchen and now you will, too! Our participation cooking class features all California-Mexican appetizers from Hugh and Teri's cookbook, Mexican Flavors. Afternoon is free for last-minute shopping and wine tasting! This evening we gather for our Graduation Dinner at Hugh and Teri's. Our dinner this evening is prepared by the talented chef, Kelly Macdonald. With wine in hand and appetizers prepared by Kelly, we tour the property and then adjourn to the long dining table overlooking the demonstration kitchen. Chef Kelly, formerly Executive Chef of the Napa Valley Wine Train and Sous Chef at Mustards Grill,  presents each course as we dine late into the evening. Kelly is a gifted communicator, always ready to educate and entertain! With wine in hand, we reminisce about the week, and plan reunions.

Saturday: Napa to Home
After last-minute morning adventures, those with flights depart for the airport, or you may stay on to enjoy the many other activities available in the Bay Area. Each year we do a new program, and we hope you’ll come back to see us again.

For More Information and To Register

We invite you to call us at (707) 252-9773 to find out more about enjoying a fabulous week of hands-on cooking and wine tasting and all the other exciting activities that you can get only at a cooking school hosted by cookbook author and chef extraordinaire Hugh Carpenter. We look forward to hearing from you.