This sweet weekend is a favorite of many Washington State Wineries – Valentine’s Day and a long weekend. And it’s a great weekend for the many Chocolatiers too!
Everyone knows red wine and chocolate are good for you. Dark chocolate contains healthy fats, mostly monounsaturated and saturated fat, with very little polyunsaturated fat. Dark chocolate also contains lots of polyphenols. When it comes to polyphenol antioxidants, cacao is up there with pomegranates, cranberries, blueberries and red wine. It’s a healthy weekend too!
On the Kitsap Peninsula, wineries on Bainbridge are open for touring this weekend. They have partnered with some of the region’s premier chocolatiers to offer you delectable tastes of chocolate to go with their wines. Regular tasting fees apply but there are no additional fees for chocolate tasting.
At Amelia Wynn try mini chocolate éclairs with their fabulous wines. Locally-made chocolate truffles infused with raspberry wine plus other savory bites will be featured at Bainbridge Vineyards. Eleven Winery has chocolate wine fudge from local maker Bon Bon, chocolate-covered wine grapes, and special samples from Chuao. Chocolatier Keith Jackson will be at Perennial Vintners passing out chocolates from Yukon Jackson’s Chocolates. Rolling Bay Winery will pair their reds with Fremont’s Theo Chocolate.
Yakima Valley is inviting wine and chocolate enthusiasts to its annual Red Wine & Chocolate event this weekend. As the oldest wine region in Washington State, wineries from Yakima, Zillah, Prosser and Red Mountain will be offering a weekend of divine decadence. Premier Pass holders experience a variety of specialty pairings, library tastings, and tours not available to the public. Here are a few that sounded absolutely wonderful:
Antolin Winery will have chocolate cups and wine to taste from and eat. An idea that Reidel has thought of yet!
Gilbert Cellars: Local patisserie Crème will be preparing three special wine-inspired chocolate temptations to pair with three of our favorite reds.
Horizon’s Edge Winery will be releasing a new Devil’s Canyon red blend and finally, after many of you have been patiently waiting for, our new Raspberry Riesling.
Kana Winery will be featuring decadent delights paired with our award winning red wines.
Knight Hill Winery: We are offering mole and small Tamales in the Tasting Room with Tamales to purchase and take away!
Lookout Point Winery will have a Chocolate Fountain with fresh fruits as well as handmade Truffles, Mini Macaroons, and savory Pear & Brie Tartlets. Our weekend flight includes five of our award winning vintages that include three Malbecs, a Grenache, and our Tableau blend.
Maison de Padgett Winery has their traditional chocolate fountain to enjoy. A newly released Unzipped Sangiovese and limited McHargue Malbec Port are on tap.
Paradisos del Sol Winery is offering a nine-course winemaker’s dinner for 2015 Red Wine & Chocolate. Nothing elaborate, just nine tiny bites of food — five include chocolate, four savory, two sweet — to pair with nine wines. Sip, Bite, Sip, Sip!
Portteus Winery will featuring Chef Greg Masset’s famous fudge brownies alongside an extensive lineup of knockout reds such as Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Sangiovese, Tempranillo and Zinfandel. YUM!
Reflection Vineyards will showcase the 2012 release of Reserve Cabernet as well as Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot and Melange, and a Bordeaux blend. To pair with the wines, Allison’s famous Kahlua Espresso Brownies.
Severino Cellars family recipe of Dark Chocolate Fudge will be available for sampling with the newly released 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon, Red and 2010 Merlot.
Tanjuli Winery’s 2013 Estate Orange Muscat will compliment the array of domestic and imported chocolate treats. Don’t miss this rare treat.
Treveri Sparkling Cellars will have some beautifully handcrafted truffles to taste with their wide array of sparkling wines.
Two Mountain Winery: Don’t miss this hot spot! Be the first to taste the limited production 2011 Touriga National Port paired with Port infused brownies!
Wineglass Cellars has a Decadent Double Dark Chocolate Brownie made by Imogene’s of Yakima which will pair deliciously with the 2004 Port.
You can also go west for a Red Wine and Chocolate Tour of the Olympic Peninsula wineries and cideries. They will pair new releases and decadent chocolate delights. Enjoy a tour through the scenic towns of Chimacum, Nordland, Port Townsend, Sequim and Port Angeles where nine artisan wineries including Camaraderie Cellars, Eaglemount Wine & Cider, FairWinds Winery, Finnriver Farm & Cidery, Harbinger Winery, Lullaby Winery, Marrowstone Vineyards, Olympic Cellars, and Wind Rose Cellars will welcome you.
Your ticket gets you a special commemorative wine glass, complimentary wine tasting and chocolate samples at nine OPW Wineries. Tickets are available online. Any remaining tickets will be sold for $30 at participating wineries during the Red Wine and Chocolate Tour. Visit www.olympicpeninsulawineries.org for further information.
Next month is the Taste Washington, the nation’s largest single-region wine and food event. Taste Washington brings together over 225 wineries, 70 restaurants and 60 culinary exhibitors from across the region for the ultimate four-day experience.
Taste Washington will celebrate its 18th year, March 26-29, 2015. Mark your calendar!