Vina Robles Vineyards and Winery is inviting wine and dessert loves alike to enjoy an elegant Valentine’s Day celebration Saturday, Feb. 11, from 5 to 8 p.m., at its fourth annual Chocolate Festival, a fundraiser for San Luis Obispo County organizations that support local children, such as Big Brothers Big Sisters.
The event, dedicated entirely to all things chocolate, was inspired by the Wine and Chocolate Experience offered at the Hospitality Center, said Simone Michel, Vina Robles director of marketing.
“(Due to) our Swiss heritage, Vina Robles embraces a ‘European approach’ that favors food-friendly wines with modest alcohol content and a bright finish,” Michel said. “To promote (these pairings) we introduced several tasting experiences. As a Swiss-owned winery, chocolate was an easy choice.”
Eight local wineries will work in collaboration with local bakeries — including Just Baked SLO, Crave Mini Donuts and Twisted Glaze — to create the ultimate Valentine’s Day tasting experience at the winery, located at 3700 Mill Road.
“Pairing chocolate with wine can be tricky,” Michel said. “The easiest (way to start) is to pick a dark chocolate and (less acidic) wine.”
Dark chocolate contains so many different aromatics it is common to find a corresponding note in a wine, Michel said. Together, the duos enhance aromas that complement each other so well they create taste explosions and sensations incomparable to anything else in the world of tastes.
The festival, which will be held inside Vina Robles’ Signature Room, will feature live music by singer and songwriter Melody Klemin, who frequently performs at local SLO venues. She will present an original blend of contemporary folk and Americana, along with several varieties in between.
Event coordinators expect this year to be another sold-out event with over 200 guests. Tickets to the event, which cost $25 for Wine Club members and $40 for non-members, are selling fast and can be bought at vinarobles.com.