Escapes: Truffles, trails, talks, more


Truffle festival

Spend four days indulging in all things truffle. The fourth annual Napa Truffle Festival features a lineup of internationally known chefs as well as experts on the prized earthy fungus. The event kicks off Friday with scientific truffle seminars, wine and truffle meals, an orchard tour and a wild mushroom forage with mycologists. It ends Jan. 20 with a truffle-themed marketplace where you can sample truffled grilled oysters, truffle goat cheese enchiladas, truffles rolled in chocolate and more.

The festival takes place at the Westin Verasa Napa at 1314 McKinstry St., Napa, and ticket prices vary. The most elaborate, all-inclusive package costs $1,250, but individual events range from $60 to $475. The Sunday marketplace is free. For more information, visit


Winter walk

What: Join a docent-led, 3-mile walk along the picturesque, mixed-terrain Zinfandel Trail. See the way nature moves water to make the most of the rainy season.

When: 10 a.m.-noon Saturday

Where: Pichetti Ranch Preserve, Montebello Road, Cupertino

Cost: Free



Croatia travel talk

What: Vertical Horizons Travel will be giving a travel talk about Croatia focusing on Zagreb, Plitvice Lakes National Forest, Zadar, Split, Hvar Island and Dubrovnik.

When: 2 p.m. Jan. 19

Where: 102 Russler Lane, Folsom

Cost: Free but reservations required

Information: Call (916) 983-8651 to reserve a seat or go to


Wine sale

What: The 22nd annual Winter WINEland features more than 120 wineries offering substantial discounts. Food pairings, tours and live entertainment will be on offer in addition to selected discounts.

When: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

Where: Various wineries, Healdsburg

Cost: $60 weekend, $45 Sunday only, $10 designated drivers



Restaurant Week

What: Visit some of Oakland’s most acclaimed restaurants during the fourth annual Oakland Restaurant Week. More than 50 restaurants are offering prix-fixe menus at $20, $30 or $40 for lunch and dinner.

When: Friday through Jan. 26

Where: Oakland

Cost: $20, $30 or $40



Adventures in Italy

What: Experience Italy hosts its monthly travel seminar, offering advice about the best times to visit the boot-shaped country and what to do once you get there. Geared for first-time travelers and veterans looking for a refresher.

When: 7 p.m. Tuesday

Where: Upstairs at Bella Bru Cafe, 5038 Fair Oaks Blvd.

Cost: $10

Information: Register by calling (916) 456-0570, online at or via email at info@experienceitaly.

– Janelle Bitker