Well, after a week of doctor appointments for both ourselves and our conserved son Cristy and I felt a need to get away for a few days to relax and unwind. We took this opportunity to get our Lance 1995 out of storage for the weekend and take it up to Twisted Oak Winery which is in the heart of Gold Rush Country near Angels Camp, California.
Twisted Oak Winery participates in Harvest Hosts which allows members to stay for a night or two for free at participating wineries, farms, museums, and golf courses. Twisted Oak even takes the extra step of offering one free wine tasting for their Harvest Hosts guests. The hope is that you will like what you taste and make a purchase.
I called the week before and was told that they didn’t have anything happening the weekend that I wanted to stay but I should probably call back the day before to be sure. I did and they didn’t… have anything happening that is so everything was all set. We hitched up the Lance the night before and loaded it up with our clothes and groceries for the weekend. The next day, after seeing Avenger’s Endgame, we hopped into my trusty (if not gutless) RAM 1500 and hauled our little wagon up to Twisted Oak.
When I had spoken to them they said there were two entrances to the winery. The first one I would come to goes up a dirt road and is a little, um, twisty. They recommend that people with RVs take the second entrance which is paved. We took that entrance and pulled into the parking lot. We saw one Airstream trailer parked at the far side of the lot. I went in to ask where we could park and was told I could park anywhere along the edges of the parking lot, on any side as long as I didn’t block a driveway or their gravel “party area”.
Looking at the Airstream I could see that they were parked in full sun, and had one of their wheels on blocks because the parking lot wasn’t level over there. That’s not good because I’m lazy. I elected to park on the west side of the parking lot, in the shade of the trees, where it was level. It was a really good spot not only because it was level but also a stand of bushes and lavender blocked our view of the Airstream trailer across the parking lot. We couldn’t see them, they couldn’t see us. Wonderful!
After setting up the trailer and unhitching we decided that the first item on the agenda was a nap. Cristy read for a while but I guess my napping called to her because she soon laid down on the bed with me and we were both snoozing away. After our naps we went into the tasting room and that was when we found out that Harvest Host guests get a complimentary tasting. We tasted a few of their wines but honestly, we’re not wine drinkers, I don’t drink alcoholic drinks at all. I’m sure their wines are very good but I’m not the best judge. We thanked them and then headed back outside.
They are very family friendly here with games and toys for the kids outside. Plenty for both adults and kids to do while there. They have picnic tables so you can make an afternoon of it and have lunch. And the views are wonderful!
It was getting late so we decided to drive up to Murphys to find some dinner. We ended up at El Jardin. It’s a local Mexican restaurant chain that we’ve eaten at before but this was our first time in their Murphys restaurant. It’s smaller than most but they have a great outside patio to dine at. A small creek runs right past the tables. Dinner was great as usual and the staff were very friendly as you would expect in a small town like Murphys. After dinner we headed back to Twisted Oak, enjoyed the sunset, watch a movie I had saved on my iPad and then went to sleep.
The next morning after a sniffley, sneezey night we awoke to a beautiful, peaceful morning. After breakfast we took a walk down to the vineyards. It was a warm Spring weekend and the air temperature was perfect at 65 degrees. Since I didn’t buy any wine I paid them back by putting the chickens back up in the trees in their Rubber Chicken National Forest. We enjoyed the quiet of the vineyard and grounds since they hadn’t opened yet.
Once back to the trailer I had to succumb to taking some Benadryl. After about an hour it hit me and I had to take a quick nap. Cristy took some soon afterwards and was conked out next to me on the bed. After we woke up we decided to head back in to Murphys for lunch and some shopping. That’s Cristy’s favorite form of relaxation! We had lunch at Alchemy Cafe. Always delicious and then walked the main street poking our noses into the shops and boutiques. Cristy bought some of her favorite spices at The Spice Tin and then we decided to head back to our trailer to nurse our allergies some more. Back at the trailer we watched another movie, took another nap, and then watched the sun set. It was probably the most awesome day we’ve had in a while. 🙂
I need to insert something here about the roads leading to Twisted Oak. The first entrance is a twisting dirt road that takes you up to the winery, the second is a shorter paved road that also takes you to the winery. If at all possible take the dirt road, the first driveway. It’s easily passable by any car, just don’t try it if you’re towing a trailer. You’ll be rewarded with some of the most entertaining signs you’ll ever see.
The next morning we hung out, had some breakfast, and after watching our church service on our smartphone we hitched up the trailer and headed back down the hill to home.
Even though it was such a short outing, and we were sneezing almost the whole time (we went through 3 boxes of Kleenex) we still felt really relaxed and refreshed. I’m already trying to plan our next outing and more than likely, it will involve Harvest Hosts.