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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Wednesday, February 26, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Food, vino and chocolate: Two festivals this weekend offer Decadence and wine-and-dine-arounds

The cities of Spokane and Coeur d’Alene this weekend are the home of three days and nights of Decadence – in the form of a luxurious chocolate festival at the Davenport Grand Hotel downtown – and the third-annual Food & Wine Festival at the Coeur d’Alene Resort.

All the details – schedule of events, pricing, etc. – can be found at spokane7tickets.com for Decadence and cdaresort.com for the Food & Wine Festival, but here’s a list of highlights and details for each festival:

Decadence Chocolate Festival

Fortunately – or is it unfortunately? – Decadence is contained in one day – from 4-9 p.m. Friday – and The Spokesman-Review is a sponsor for the first time this year. Tickets are $20 general admission and $60 for VIP.

The sampling event and chocolate festival features more than 20 vendors of chocolate, coffee, doughnuts, pastries and more.

The class schedule is hand-rolled chocolate truffles with Drew Smith of Wanderlust Delicato at 4:15 p.m.; the history of chocolate with Monica Stenzel at 5 p.m.; wine and chocolate pairing with Arbor Crest and Chocolate Apothecary (for an additional cost of $10) at 6 p.m.; cookie decorating with Ricky Webster at 7 p.m.; and dipping chocolate strawberries with the Melting Pot at 8 p.m.

The 2020 exhibitors include Arbor Crest Wine Cellars, Azteca Mexican Restaurants, Big Daddy’s Sweets, Caramel Kitchen, Chocolate Apothecary, Craftsman Cellars, the Davenport Grand Hotel, EanMarie Fine Chocolates, Halletts Chocolates, Happy Happy Fudge, Isagenix, Marsells Cakes & Desserts, the Melting Pot, Mi Flavour, Nothing Bundt Cake, Peaceful Pond Place Desserts, Schocolat, the Scone Ranger, Spokandy Chocolatier, Spokane Club, Sweet Frostings, Sysco, Thomas Hammer Coffee Roasters and Wanderlust Delicato.

The Decadence Chocolate Martini Competition, in the Maple Ballroom at 7 p.m., features four mixologists – Post Street Ale House’s Alona Lohman and her Chocolate Brandied Cherry; Safari Room Fresh Grill and Bar’s Richard Yakesh and his Godiva Bramble; Peacock Lounge and Palm Court’s Tyson Nell and his Coco Loco; and Table 13 Whiskey Bar’s Zac Fullerton and his Terry’s Orange Respite – and music by Pat Simmons. Yours truly is serving as one of the judges, arm twisted.

Also, Ed Clark is the event’s emcee, Evan Denlinger will provide additional music, chocolate-inspired art by Shiree Ross will be on display, and there will be a Decadence photo both for social media fun.

Coeur d’Alene Food & Wine Festival

A hop, skip, jump across the border, the Coeur d’Alene Resort is hosting its third annual Food & Wine Festival from Friday through Sunday, and tickets are $35-$225 depending on the event. The following are the marquee events this weekend:

6-10 p.m. Friday: Taste at Twilight Opening Reception ($69) at the Coeur d’Alene Resort Convention Center

7-10 p.m. Friday: Doubleback Winery Eight-Course Wine-Paired Dinner ($225) at Beverly’s Restaurant

10-11 a.m. Saturday: Forgeron Cellars and 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Saturday: Thurston Wolfe Winery. Perfect Pairing Wines Class ($35 each) at the Coeur d’Alene Resort Convention Center.

1-3 p.m. Saturday: Coeur d’Alene Cellars Three-Course Wine-Paired Lunch ($69) at the Cedars Floating Restaurant

1-3 p.m. Saturday: Barrister Wine-Paired Lunch ($69) at Beverly’s Restaurant

6:30-11 p.m. Saturday: Lakeside Dinner Experience ($125) at Hagadone Event Center. Cruise boat boards at 6:15 p.m. and departs at 6:45 p.m. The grand dinner is 7-10 p.m., and entertainment is from 9-11 p.m.

7-10 p.m. Saturday: L’Ecole No. 41 Winery Seven-Course Wine-Paired Dinner ($125) at Beverly’s Restaurant.

11 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday: Grand Tasting Event ($52) featuring a food demonstration by chef Chad White at Coeur d’Alene Resort Convention Center.

This year’s Food & Wine Festival benefits the Community Canter Fund. Chocolate, food and wine in one weekend? What a fabulous weekend in Spokane and Coeur d’Alene – bon appétit!

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