It has been a number of years since I was able to actually enjoy one of the larger events sponsored by Lake Erie Wine Country (http://www.lakeeriewinecountry.org/events). I was excited that it was a beautiful sunny day to try my hand at Wine and Chocolate. There are three big annual events–Wine and Chocolate in February, Wine and Cheese in April and Harvest Weekends in November. Each of these pair food with specific wines at each of the participating wineries.
With my ticket, I got instruct
ions as to where to pick up my packet. The packet included a cute chocolate wine set (pictured), a recipe book for all the food offered at the wineries, a wine glass, a ticket to be stamped at each winery and a guide/map.
Because I have been to the wineries before, I decided
to target some of them that I hadn’t visited for a while. I also took a peek at the food list and chose wineries that had food that interested me. I know my limits, and usually I will only go to 3 or 4 wineries in an afternoon. On this trip, I upped the ante a bit, since I knew that I would be eating along the way.
A couple of hints, if you are thinking of going to one of the events:
- Bring water with you. That is one thing I didn’t have enough of; with the wine tastings, I always want to have water!
- If you can, go on an off day. We went on Friday afternoon, and it was very pleasant. It wasn’t crowded and we could get attention from the staff at each of the wineries. Guests have told me that Sunday is a good day…Saturday is the crowded day!
- Strategize your route—we stopped at a couple of wineries in the middle, then went to the furthest wineries (from us, in New York) and worked our way down.
- If you want to really do tastings of the wine at the wineries…pick another time. This is the time to have the food, and the paired wine
I was surprised (and secretly pleased) that the food at this event was NOT all chocolate. There was a nice mix of main course offerings along with dessert offerings. After seven wineries…I did NOT want dinner that night!
So..the next event is Wine and Cheese, the weekend of April 21 – 23. Tickets MUST be purchased in advance. These events always sell out, so make your plans early. What goes better than wine and cheese…except maybe wine and chocolate?