Madera Delish: Wine & Chocolate Weekend

Is this your top taste duo? Your Valentine's Weekend is all mapped out.

NARROWING DOWN OUR FAVORITE PAIRINGS... is as difficult as assuming that everyone likes peanut butter and jelly or marshmallows and cocoa. Some people go for donuts and whiskey, and others like Sriracha with their avocados. Placing great tastes side by side is a tradition as longstanding as humankind, and we're forever on the search for the next savory combo. But one that stands at the top, for just about every adult who is still in touch with their sweet tooth, is vino and chocolate. A really rich and spicy red is enhanced by a square of something rife with caramel, and a nut-filled bar straight off the drugstore shelf has a way of adding zing to a zinfandel that needs a bit of oomph. The only thing left to do for chocolate-and-wine lovers, which is a pretty big, pretty passionate crowd, is to find an area that's putting the scrumptious spotlight on both. Madera Wine Trail is going to do just that, and over the ideal weekend, too. Indeed, Valentine's Weekend 2016 -- that's Saturday, Feb. 13 and Sunday, Feb. 14 -- will be devoted to great Gold Country wineries and interesting dessert/drink pairings. It's the...

WINE & CHOCOLATE WEEKEND: Put down your twenty five bucks ahead of making for the Sierra-close wine trail (or buy your ticket there), and then enjoy visits to Birdstone Winery, San Joaquin Wine Company, Ficklin Vineyards, and more spots dotting the hilly-pretty area. Designated drivers are free, or you can organize transportation ahead of time. Best of all, it's a Valentine's adventure that steps outside of the normal bounds and suggestions, but with some of the tried-and-true touchstones of the holiday. (Spoiler alert: wine and chocolate.) If you want to know the specific plans of each vineyard, along the trail, keep an eye on this page. And never, ever feel guilty about your favorite duo. Why shouldn't egg salad and canned peaches be a thing, if it is your thing? We all have our commonalities in the edible match-up department, starting with, for many people, wine and chocolate.

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