Toast Valentine's day with Whidbey Island Vintners

'Red Wine and Chocolate' runs Feb. 14-16.
— image credit: Liz Burlingame/Whidbey News-Times

While some couples rack their brains over Valentine’s day to come up with a grandiose or offbeat plan, the Whidbey Island Vintners Association says, keep it traditional.

Wine and chocolate are unapologetic classics.

Feb. 14 to 16, four venues and five wineries will host “Red wine and chocolate,” an island-wide wine tasting event.

“It’s certainly romantic,” Greenbank Cellars winemaker David Moore said. “People are ready to get out of the house, cabin fever is setting in.”

Not all the wine selections will be red, although attendees can expect an award-winning cabernet sauvignon at Holmes Harbor Cellars.

Greenbank Cellars is serving 2007 Madeline Angevine and Siegerrebes, local white wines, along with their red wine collection.

Each winery will offer its own pairings, such as 36 Long and truffles or Pinot Gris coupled with milk chocolate.

“You want to pair the flavors together. A darker heavier red goes with a heavier chocolate,” Whidbey Island Vintners president Greg Martinez said.

This is the first major event of the 2009 season for the Whidbey Island Vinters Association. The event will combine scenic views of Whidbey and luscious wines.

Tickets are $20, and they come with a souvenir glass and free tasting at the participating wineries and tasting rooms. Most wineries will be open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., including Langley’s Whidbey Island Vineyard and Winery, the Island’s Pioneer Winery, Holmes Harbor Cellars outside of Freeland and Greenbank Cellars on Day Road.

Greenbank Farm’s wine shop will provide space for local wineries that don’t have a tasting room, and will feature Blooms Winery on Whidbey and Fish Talk Vineyards.

Tickets are available today at the wineries.

Need another reason to get out of the house this Valentine’s day? The weather forecast is partly sunny.

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