WEEKEND: Tickle tongues with wine, chocolate on annual tour

Peninsula Daily News

What could be more intoxicating than a taste of luscious chocolate followed by a sip of the perfect red wine?

Opportunities for such delicious pleasure — as well as other sweet and savory combinations — will abound during two decadent weekends starting Saturday.

Eight wineries on the North Olympic Peninsula will present pairings of wine and chocolate from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the annual Red Wine & Chocolate Tour this Saturday and Sunday and for three days on Presidents Day weekend, Saturday, Feb. 16, through Monday, Feb. 18.

Participants who visit all eight of the wineries will be entered into a drawing for a wine-themed gift basket.

Stops

The wineries are Black Diamond Winery, Camaraderie Cellars, Harbinger Winery and Olympic Cellars in Port Angeles; Wind Rose Cellars in Sequim; Eaglemount Wine & Cider and FairWinds Winery in Port Townsend; and Finnriver Farm & Cidery in Chimacum.

A $30 ticket will buy a commemorative wineglass, complimentary wine-tasting and delectable samples of chocolate at each winery during the Red Wine & Chocolate Weekends.

Tickets may be purchased at participating wineries during the event, but they are not required.

A $5 wine-tasting fee will be charged at each winery for non-ticketed visitors, all of whom must be 21 or older.

“Nothing is more delicious than a good red wine and the right chocolate shared amid the beauty of the North Olympic Peninsula,” said Vicki Corson, Olympic Peninsula Wineries Association president and co-owner of Camaraderie Cellars.

Participating wineries, and their special attractions, are:

Black Diamond Winery, 2976 Black Diamond Road, Port Angeles; 360-457-0748; www.blackdiamondwinery.com.

Black Diamond will feature its raspberry wine with chocolate truffles and chocolate pomegranate pieces.

Camaraderie Cellars, 334 Benson Road, Port Angeles; 360-417-3564; www.camaraderiecellars.com.

Camaraderie will showcase the savory side of chocolate, with cocoa-spiced pulled pork paired with a recently released 2009 Syrah and chocolate-drizzled popcorn paired with a Tempranillo.

Molly Baby bittersweet chocolate cookies are especially complemented by Camaraderie's Merlot.

Eaglemount Wine & Cider, 2350 Eaglemount Road, Discovery Bay; 360-732-4084; www.eaglemountwinery.com.

Eaglemount will pair its red wines, including a new-release Malbec Port, with truffles and caramels by Chocolate Serenade.

Additional new releases also will be available for tasting.

FairWinds Winery, 1984 W. Hastings Ave., Port Townsend; 360-385-6899; www.fairwindswinery.com.

The tallest chocolate fountain on the North Olympic Peninsula will flow there, and visitors can choose from an assortment of fruits and sweets for dipping.

The dark chocolate will be paired with Fairwinds' Port O' Call.

Also available will be the latest vintages of Gewürztraminer and Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot blend and samples of the soon-to-be-released 2005 Champoux Vineyard Cabernet and a 2005 Merlot.

Finnriver Farm & Cidery, 62 Barn Swallow Road, Chimacum; 360-732-4337; www.finnriver.com.

Finnriver will feature a special Valentine release of raspberry wine with apple brandy, along with a cranberry rosehip winter seasonal cider.

A slice of pizza with Sauce Chocolat Salé, a French salted-chocolate sauce, by Jennifer Michele Chocolat, is included with ticket purchase.

Finnriver black currant Brandywine truffles locally made by Elevated Candy Co. and mini dark-chocolate cordial cups for sipping Finnriver's sweet wines will be available.

Harbinger Winery, 2358 W. U.S. Highway 101, Port Angeles; 360-452-4262; www.harbingerwinery.com.

Dynamo Red Wine will be paired with Harbingers' chocolate/potato chip invention.

A Petit Sirah-infused “chocolate rocket” also is planned, as well as a secret bonus pairing.

Barhop Brewery, located at the same site as the winery, will treat beer lovers to its annual Venezuelan Chocolate Porter.

Olympic Cellars, 255410 U.S. Highway 101, Port Angeles; 360-452-0160; www.olympiccellars.com.

“The Best of Red Wine & Chocolate” will kick off a yearlong commemoration of all of Olympic Cellars' “bests” as “chief working girl” Kathy Charlton moves behind the scenes into a consulting role and co-owner Lisa Martin takes the helm.

The winery will bring back past wine and chocolate favorites, such as Cashmere, Cabernet & Chocolate and Copper Heart Pounding with Master Coppersmith Walter Massey.

New this year is chocolate bark produced by local master chocolatier Yvonne Yokota.

It is incorporated with cherries, almonds, sea salt and orange for four wine pairings.

The new-release 2009 Syrah — rich, spicy and full-bodied — will be paired with vegetarian Chocolate Chili Molé, a “Best Of” from 2009.

Wind Rose Cellars, 155 W. Cedar St., Sequim; 360-358-5469; www.windrosecellars.com.

Wind Rose Cellars' new tasting room at 143 W. Washington St. in downtown Sequim will offer four Italian wine varieties: 2011 Dolcetto, 2010 Barbera, 2009 Bravo Rosso and the 2011 Windy Day Muscato, each specially paired with chocolates by local chocolatier Cocoa d'Amici.

There also will be a VIP area with additional chocolate and wine pairings, where guests can taste one-on-one with the winemaker.

For more information, visit http://tinyurl.com/ygawtdk.

Last modified: February 07. 2013 5:56PM
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