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Whodunnit: A Sneak Peek of the Napa Valley Wine Train Murder Mystery Tour

June 5, 2019
Arts & Culture

One of Napa Valley Wine Train’s most popular and unique tours is back—the Murder Mystery tour. We’ve partnered with The Murder Mystery Company to bring you an evening of entertainment that is simply to die for. But what can you expect from a murderous and mysterious train ride through Napa Valley? Read on to learn more.

The Food

Fresh Herb Roasted Chicken

There’s one thing that is true of any Napa Valley Wine Train tour, and that’s our five-star gourmet cuisine. Your Murder Mystery train ticket includes a decadent three-course meal featuring the best local and seasonal ingredients prepared fresh by our expert culinary team in our kitchen car.

To start, choose between a light green salad of Sonoma greens with shaved fennel, radish, toasted almonds and a champagne vinaigrette and a freshly made soup of the day.

For your entrée, choose between the catch of the day, roasted tenderloin of beef, brown sugar glazed pork tenderloin, lemon thyme roasted chicken, or vegetarian options like a hearty kale and quinoa salad or mushroom and pea pasta. Each entrée is served with thoughtful, seasonal sides like wild mushrooms, charred broccolini, summer beans, and fingerling potatoes.

Finally, for something sinfully sweet, finish off your meal with a pastry dessert baked daily in house by our creative pastry chefs.

To elevate your meal, opt for wine pairings so you can sample some of the finest vintages that Napa has to offer, or simply choose your favorite wine to savor. Either way you’ve got the makings of a truly remarkable meal. Don’t let yourself get too enthralled in the wining and dining however, there’s a murder to be solved!

The Mystery

A black and white wine cork with red wine tip.

When you step aboard the Murder Mystery tour, you’re stepping back in time. Back to the roar and razzle dazzle of the 1920s, to be exact! The Charleston, prohibition, mobsters, and femme fatales—the swinging 20s were an era when first class rail travel was prevalent, haircuts and hemlines were getting shorter, the upper class were living lavishly, and in the case of this train ride, personalities clashed with dastardly consequences.

Characters you’re likely to encounter aboard the Napa Valley Wine Train throughout this murder mystery tour are speakeasy starlets, jilted lovers, fiendish frenemies, and of course the man of the hour, Mafia Don Lou Zar himself. Beware the undercover feds, looking to collar a culprit at any cost. Investigate, interrogate, and immerse yourself in this mafiosa mystery and see if you’ve got what it takes to figure out who the killer is.

The mystery occurs in three acts, and you’ll be given time in between each act to do some investigation, question suspects, and work with your fellow guests to figure out whodunit. Act One sets the scene. You’ll meet the evening’s cast of characters and—gasp!—the crime will occur. What did you see? Did any characters seem suspicious? You’ll have time after your first course to decide. As your main course arrives, Act Two will begin, revealing more details about the mystery and perhaps even cracks in the character’s alibis. As you digest your entrée you’ve got a chance to digest all of this new information and narrow down your suspect list. The finale begins with your final course, as the final suspects are presented. Now’s your chance to close in on the killer.


What do I wear?

Guests are encouraged to dress to impress in their top-drawer Twenties ensembles. Don a flapper dress, a pinstripe suit, a feather boa, fedora, or headband so you can disappear into the speakeasy crowd. Don’t want to commit to a costume? This murder mystery could always use an extra private detective—or simply come in what you’re comfortable wearing and get ready to sit back and soak in all of the action.

Do I have to participate?

From the moment you board the Wine Train for your Murder Mystery Tour, you are part of the story and are encouraged to outwit the players, search for clues, and see if you can solve the mystery first—so don’t be shy! Costumed actors will help you to your seats, assign character roles, and may even offer you a prop to help get you into character. That being said, if you’re just looking for some quality entertainment while you wine and dine you’re more than welcome to enjoy the show as a spectator. You’ll be asked to work together with your fellow guests to complete investigative tasks and put clues together.

When is the Murder Mystery Tour?

Murder Mystery Tours run one or two times per month until November. For complete schedule information, and to purchase tickets, visit https://www.winetrain.com/events/murder-mystery/.

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