Bruno Mars carried out a headlining set Sunday, Could 27 at BottleRock Napa Valley. Photograph: Frank Micellota
Bruno Mars famously known as BottleRock Napa Valley “the flowery Coachella” throughout his 2018 headlining set on the luxe Wine Nation music competition. Boasting top-tier touring acts, beautiful meals and wine choices, cooking demonstrations by superstar cooks, an on-site spa and ever-expanding checklist of VIP perks, BottleRock is actually a notch above the typical out of doors live performance.
Some 120,000 folks attend the annual competition in downtown Napa, which historically kicks off Northern California’s summer season out of doors live performance season over Memorial Day weekend. Greater than 80 acts are scheduled to carry out at this yr’s live performance, which takes place on the Napa Valley Expo on Could 24-26, together with Think about Dragons, Mumford and Sons, Neil Younger and the Promise of the Actual, Pharrell Williams, Santana and Logic.
Having skilled some rising pains after the competition’s 2013 launch, three years later the producers of BottleRock partnered with Reside Nation Leisure, the world’s largest live performance promoter, and have since established the weekend-long occasion as one of many greatest music festivals on the West Coast, alongside San Francisco’s Outdoors Lands and Southern California’s Coachella Valley Music & Arts Competition.
BottleRock on the Napa Valley Expo. Photograph: Santiago Mejia, The Chronicle
The place is it?
BottleRock takes place on the Napa Valley Expo, a 26-acre plot of land off downtown Napa, a venue that sometimes hosts canine exhibits, craft festivals and carnivals. The staff behind BottleRock has made a number of enhancements to the positioning over time, putting in a brand new garden, planting timber and opening up the walkways — and so they proceed to reinforce the house. Come competition time, the venue is totally remodeled with a number of phases, micro wineries, lounging areas, VIP viewing decks and an assortment of immersive experiences which are pure Napa.
Followers work out which acts they wish to see at Bottlerock Napa Valley. Photograph: Kevin N. Hume, The Chronicle
What’s the vibe?
Wine Nation informal.
BottleRock tends to attract an older, extra prosperous demographic than most music festivals. There are extra dads in Wilco tees than youngsters in Brandy Melville crop tops. They’re additionally simply as pleased hanging out within the JaM Cellars cabana as they’re out within the discipline taking part in air guitar alongside to Gary Clark Jr.
BottleRock prominently boasts rock acts from the highest down, however the promoters have made an effort to attract in additional eclectic audiences by reserving indie, hip-hop and EDM acts on the secondary and facet phases.
After all, you might be too busy sipping rosé and noshing on poké to note.
A BottleRock attendee takes benefit of the free bike parking Photograph: Erik Castro, Particular To The Chronicle
How do I get there?
Since BottleRock takes place in downtown Napa — and there are such a lot of refreshments obtainable all through the day — the best strategy to attend is to remain at a close-by resort and stroll to the grounds. The following greatest guess, in the event you’re staying native, is to bike (complimentary parking is accessible close to the venue), take Napa Valley’s Vine Transit or a hail a rideshare service.
If you happen to’re coming from out of city, BottleRock buses (celebration buses by default) function on a roundtrip circuit every day from San Francisco, Sacramento, Oakland, San Jose, Fairfield, Sonoma, Mill Valley, Palo Alto and Santa Rosa.
For many who are intent on going through Memorial Day weekend site visitors in Wine Nation, a restricted variety of basic admission parking passes for heaps close to the competition may also be bought upfront.
Ayesha Curry on the culinary stage at BottleRock. Photograph: Santiago Mejia, The Chronicle
What are the foods and drinks choices?
Music isn’t the one attraction at BottleRock. The competition additionally includes a energetic culinary stage, hosted by Bay Space radio and TV persona Liam Mayclem, which pairs up celebrities like Padma Lakshmi, Graham Ellliot and Hubert Keller with musicians like Alice Cooper, Tre Cool of Inexperienced Day and rapper Too Brief for rowdy cooking demonstrations.
As soon as you’re employed up an urge for food, head out onto the grounds for bites from lots of the space’s most interesting cooks and restaurateurs, together with Morimoto, Advert Hoc, Bouchon Bakery, Brix and Fume Bistro.
The Platinum Lounge at BottleRock. Photograph: Santiago Mejia, The Chronicle
From Sauvignon Blancs and Chardonnays, to Pinot noirs and Cabernets, the Napa Valley can be nicely represented by greater than a dozen wineries, together with Jam Cellars, St. Supery, Duckhorn, Sterling Vineyards and Blackbird. There are craft beer and cocktails too, plus a bourbon bar.
The Chronicle’s consultants recommend a observe lap earlier than diving in — take a quick stroll across the two most important meals and beverage areas to survey your choices earlier than impulse-buying your lunch. And in the event you get caught up within the music and stroll away from the competition nonetheless hungry, don’t fear, there are many locations in downtown Napa to seize a chunk.
The gang dances to Michael Franti and Spearhead at BottleRock in Napa, Calif., on Friday, Could 29, 2015. Photograph: Sarah Rice, Particular to The Chronicle
What occurs after the competition?
The music carries on lengthy after the Napa Valley Expo’s strict curfew, however BottleRock hosts a number of after-shows across the Bay Space in the course of the competition weekend. A number of indoor golf equipment in downtown Napa, only a few steps away from the competition grounds, even assist preserve the celebration going. Examine BottleRock’s web site for essentially the most up-to-date schedule of facet exhibits.
Sarah Braun of Pleasanton dances on the silent disco space at BottleRock Music Competition in Napa, Calif. on Saturday, Could 26, 2018. Photograph: Sarahbeth Maney, Particular to the Chronicle
Earlier than you go …
BottleRock has adopted a brand new bag coverage for 2019. All baggage are restricted to two-pockets or much less, and should measure 14-by-14-inches or much less. No backpacks are allowed. The organizers additionally advocate utilizing a transparent bag to maneuver by means of the doorway rapidly.
Specific entry lanes can be found for visitors with no baggage.
An excessive amount of to drink? BottleRock’s pop-up spa will as soon as once more provide rejuvenating IV drips, which allegedly ease the ache of a hangover. Therapies begin at $140.
Tammy Gannon of Orange County will get vitamins pumped into her blood stream by means of an IV on the spa throughout BottleRock. Photograph: Santiago Mejia, The Chronicle
BottleRock Napa Valley: 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Could 24-26. $159-$1,599-plus. Napa Valley Expo, 575 Third St., Napa. www.bottlerocknapavalley.com
Aidin Vaziri is The San Francisco Chronicle’s pop music critic. Electronic mail: email@example.com Twitter: @MusicSF