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Trick and treat! 

Halloween is right around the corner. Soon, parents will be mercilessly picking through sleeping children’s candy sacks, leaving no Snickers bar behind, no Twix untouched. It’s a time-honored tradition, and one of the few benefits adults reap from the holiday. For kids, it’s a blood-sugar-be-damned, no-bedtime, toilet-paper-as-many-houses-as-you-can-and-egg-any-car-stupid-enough-to-be-parked-on-the-street kind of night. But that doesn’t mean parents have to sit at home waiting for sweaty-palmed, casually dressed teenagers to come begging for candy. This is the year to spice things up, while still maintaining that youthful disregard for the national diabetes epidemic. This is the year to host a wine and candy party. 

Wine and candy: the two least likely indulgences to be paired together. You might be envisioning Michelle Bachman and Hilary Clinton sharing a dorm room, but in reality there are endless possibilities to what you can pair with a great wine. Putting unusual things together in a creative way is what Halloween is all about. Grab a white T-shirt, throw some cereal and fake blood on it, and you’re a “cereal killer.” Or paint your face and hands green and wrap yourself in a sheet for a great impersonation of a snotty tissue. Halloween is all about being outside the box, so why not eat outside the box?

Playing host to a wine and candy party is the perfect way to include the 21-and-older crowds in the spooky festivities. Grab a ton of your favorite candy—Tootsie Rolls, Snickers, M&Ms, even Peeps will work—and toss them into some festive bowls. Then hit up one of the many great local wineries we have for a Shiraz, Merlot, or Pinot Noir. After you’ve wrangled up the necessary ingredients for the wine and candy soirée, try some pairings out for yourself. Kit Kats and Merlot make for a unique blend of sweet and sophisticated, while Milk Duds and Pinot Noir seem to be made for one another. Don’t be afraid of getting creative; start up a competition to see who can give a pairing the best name (i.e. Kasparov vs. Deep Blue), throw on Sideways and drink every time someone says something remotely funny (don’t worry—this shouldn’t lead to intoxication), or have someone guess the pairing (this could be done with some of the older types of candies, making it a challenge for candy and wine aficionados alike).

In the terrifying event that you run out of candy, make your way to the kids’ candy stash. Don’t worry … they’ll never know it’s missing.

Intern Maeva Considine compiled this week’s Bites. We want a Bite! Send us your food, wine, and related news at bites@newtimesslo.com.

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