The fifth annual Vermont Wine & Chocolate Weekend is February 13 & 14, 2016. Fifteen wineries around Vermont open their doors to visitors and will feature samples of their wines with a chocolate confection or another dessert. Many have partnered with local chocolatiers to offer homegrown pairings—flavors only found in Vermont.
Visitors can taste the full spectrum of Vermont wines during Wine and Chocolate weekend. Some wineries specialize in grape wines made from northern grape varieties like Marquette, La Crescent, and Traminette; others produce black currant cassis, honey mead, ice cider, raspberry wine, and apple wine.
There are, of course, classic combinations like red wine with dark chocolate on the menu at several wineries. North Branch Vineyard is offering a chocolate ganache cake with their 2014 Saint Croix red wine. Lincoln Peak Vineyard features pairings with three neighboring chocolatiers. Other wineries are combining their wines with the chocolate itself, like the Cassis-filled chocolates at Neshobe River Winery.
Some vineyards are offering sweet twists on the theme. Shelburne Vineyard is featuring pairings with Good Comida cheesecakes on Saturday, and Boyden Valley Winery is offering special Valentine’s cocktails.
The participating wineries will be open from noon to 5 p.m. during the Wine and Chocolate weekend. Visitors can also purchase a bottle of the featured wine with the accompanying chocolates for Valentine’s Day gifts. Please call ahead to wineries for details about their tastings.
Wineries participating in the Wine and Chocolate Weekend include:
Artesano Mead, Groton. (802) 584-9000; www.artesanomead.com.
Boyden Valley Winery & Spirits, Cambridge. Free tasting of wine, cider, and cream liqueurs paired with decadent local chocolates. STiRChocolates will be onsite with additional chocolate samples infused with Boyden Valley wines and cream liqueurs. Also, an optional tasting of Valentine’s themed cocktails throughout the day. Boyden is also hosting a romantic cheese fondue dinner with wine and dessert from 4pm-6pm in their historic carriage barn loft by reservation only. Call for more details or to place a reservation for the fondue dinner. (802) 644-8151; www.boydenvalley.com.
Champlain Orchards, Shoreham. They’re pairing house-made ice cider truffles that with their Ice Cider, MacIntosh and Maple Hard cider. They’re also offering Bacon Cheddar Apple Turnovers and Heirloom Cheddar soup with any of their hard ciders. (802) 897-2777; www.champlainorchards.com.
Due North Vineyard, Franklin. (802) 285-2053; www.duenorthvineyard.com.
East Shore Vineyard, South Hero. (802) 859-9463; www.eastshorevineyard.com.
Eden Ice Cider, Newport. At the Newport Tasting Center, they're offering a special "Valentine's Day" edition of the Seasonal Tasting Plate which comes with 4 bites and 4 sips for $9. Among the 4 pairings is Chocolate Brownie from Jocelyn and Cinta's Bake Shop with Orleans Bitter Aperitif Cider and San Pellegrino Blood Orange soda, and a Maple Caramel Truffle from Burke Mountain with Eden Northern Spy Barrel-Aged Ice Cider. (802) 334-1808; www.edenicecider.com.
Fresh Tracks Farm, Berlin. (802) 223-1151; www.freshtracksfarm.com.
Hall Home Place Ice Cider, Isle La Motte. Free pairing of Sweet Six and M&E Ice Ciders with Chocolate Covered Apple Cider candies (made from their own apple cider syrup) and VT Krunch Toffee. All products will be available for purchase along with other varieties of Ice Cider and their premium VT Iced Hard Cider. Full tastings at the regular fee also available. (802) 928-3091, www.hallhomeplace.com.
Huntington River Vineyard, Huntington. Offering chocolates flavored with their wines, and opening their cozy tasting room in the old farmhouse for this special occasion. (802) 434-3332; www.huntingtonrivervineyard.com
Lincoln Peak Vineyard, Middlebury. Featuring wine pairings with three Addison County chocolatiers: Middlebury Chocolates, Daily Chocolate, and Farmhouse Truffles. (802) 388-7368; www.lincolnpeakvineyard.com.
Neshobe River Winery, Brandon. Offering cassis-filled chocolates made from their VT-grown organic black currants, paired with cassis, of course. Free tasting glass for visitors they heard about it through the state-wide event! (802) 247-8002; www.neshoberiverwinery.com.
North Branch Vineyards, Montpelier. North Branch will be pairing their 2014 Saint Croix with chocolate ganache cake. (802) 229-6169; www.northbranchvineyards.com.
Shelburne Vineyard, Shelburne. Offering wine pairings with a different Shelburne chocolatier each day 11 am- 5 pm. On Saturday, Good Comida will prepare samples of their VT-made cheesecakes, sauces and chocolates paired with or prepared with Shelburne Vineyard wines. On Sunday, Bijou Fine Chocolates will sample their chocolates and special truffles paired or prepared with SV wines. In addition to the chocolate pairings the Vineyard will also offer regular wine tastings throughout the weekend. (802) 985-8222; www.shelburnevineyard.com.
Snow Farm Vineyard, South Hero. Snow Farm is pairing estate wines with Vermont Nut Free Chocolates-- dark, milk, and white chocolate samples with the regular tasting. They’re also offering a tasting with Birnn Chocolate Truffles featuring a special release of Maple Bubbles on Snow (a champagne-style wine for a romantic weekend). Take a romantic hike on Fox Hill for breath-taking views of Lake Champlain. (802) 372-9463; www.snowfarm.com.
Whaleback Vineyard, Poultney. Whaleback will be offering their wines paired with chocolate truffles from Birnn Chocolates in South Burlington. (802) 287-0730; www.whalebackvineyard.com.
With general questions about the state-wide weekend, please contact Sara Granstrom at Lincoln Peak Vineard at (802)-388-7368 or at email@example.com.