Photo Story: The Oxbow Market in Napa Valley

oxbow market napa valley
Fish Tacos which pack a punch! They cost about USD7 for one.

In the 3-part series of the wine tour I embarked on in California, I mentioned that we stopped by the Oxbow Market in San Francisco for lunch.

oxbow market napa valley
The Oxbow Market in Napa Valley was pretty crowded when we were there.

Now I’ve dedicated a post to the Oxbow Market, because like many markets round the world, it struck me as being so vibrant, colourful and full of life. The best part of it all? It had Ritual Coffee, one of the best cafes in San Francisco.

oxbow market napa valley
Plenty of food, wine and coffee options were available.

The food was expensive, but boy, I did enjoy the oysters, albeit guiltily. But what the heck I thought – I had travelled halfway round the world. With good food and wine at my disposal, why not?

oxbow market napa valley
The sign sums up what the Oxbow Market in Napa Valley is about – Cheese, Wine, Beer and Eats

It was then did I realise, that spending money to travel sometimes can bring out a different and slightly more pleasant perspective to a place.


oxbow market napa valley
The steaks look delish. If only we had a kitchen to fry them up.
oxbow market napa valley
Fresh salmon sashimi?
oxbow market napa valley
Jars of spice.
oxbow market napa valley
Fresh apricots – yum!
oxbow market napa valley
Lovely sweet nectarines.
oxbow market napa valley
Lovely baguettes for sale
oxbow market napa valley
Freshly baked bread – Yum! 


oxbow market napa valley
Hog Island Oysters

We had our fill of oysters at Hog Island Oysters Co.

We had a dozen for USD36, which is comparable to the price of oysters we get in Singapore from Greenwood Market at $4.50 a pop. The were medium-sized oysters from different parts of US and Canada. The ones from Canada were the best.

oxbow market napa valley
Shucking oysters is tough!

Most of the oysters had a price range of between USD3 – USD3.40 per pop. It gets cheaper if you were to buy more. We had the oyster platter, which comprised oysters from Canada, Washington and Massachusetts. They were really good. For more information, visit Hog Island’s Napa Valley outlet menu. Yum!

oxbow market napa valley
Oysters which seem small, but tasty.

The Travelling Squid’s Take

My conclusion is that to go on a wine tour, one has to have sufficient resources (money). Not only that, one has to be ready to spend this money, be it for tips, to purchase a good bottle and to spend on lunch. Some part of me feels it would have been great to rent a service apartment near the Oxbow Market, which comes with a kitchen. It would have been fun to make one’s own breakfast with the freshly baked baguettes on sale, or fry up a steak with the fresh cuts of beef.

According to some of the tourism websites and brochures I’ve read, Sonoma and Napa Valley are great honeymoon destinations, for couples who know their wine and are looking for a peaceful getaway in the Californian hills, away from the hustle and bustle of downtown San Francisco. (Great tip for the friends who are in the midst of planning for their honeymoon).

Have you been to Oxbow Market before? Do share your experience in the comments section below.

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