Beginner’s Guide to Pairing Wine and Chocolate

by: Jimi The Intern
February 11, 2017

Wine and chocolate are at the center of any good Valentine’s Day celebration. However, pairing wine with chocolate is not always easy. Wine and chocolate have extremely strong and pronounced flavors that don’t always agree with one another.

These two indulgent treats can work together, and here’s how.

First, many wines offer a detailed description of the flavors present in their wine. When choosing a wine, be sure to study the tasting notes to make sure you find flavors that complement the chocolate.

Look for similar flavors

Wines can have notes of dark chocolate, cherry, and other flavors that would work side-by-side to enhance your chocolate-eating experience.

Bodegas Aragonesas Garnacha Campo de Borja

This wine features rich, bold flavors of dark chocolate, kirsch and blackberry jam. Spanish wines have been a new found love of mine, and this wine has a wide range of flavors that work nicely with chocolate.

»» BUY at Fine Wine & Good Spirits

Havens Black & Blue Red Napa Valley

You might find this wine to mingle and melt in your mouth just like your chocolate with flavors of cherry liqueur, vanilla bean, and cocoa.

»» BUY at Fine Wine & Good Spirits

Look for something sweet

Port wines are a popular choice around Valentine’s Day. Their sweet and fruit forward flavors can be a dessert all on their own and provide a perfect opportunity to give your chocolate a boozy mate to finish off the night.

Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage Porto 2011

This wine has the delicious flavors of dark stone fruit, plum, and dark cherry to go with bittersweet and dark chocolate desserts.

»» BUY at Fine Wine & Good Spirits

The Vineyard at Hershey Cocoa di Vezzetti

Drink local and indulge in this fortified wine that is like drinking an alcoholic chocolate covered cherry. The smooth flavors of chocolate and fruit make this a must for any chocolate pairing.

»» BUY at The Vineyard at Hershey

Use your resources

If these suggested wines don’t do the trick, there are plenty of resources out there to help you find the perfect harmony between these Valentine’s Day staples.

Websites like WineFolly, Food And Wine and more offer a lot of education articles to expand your palate. Be sure to ask your local chocolate shop, which chocolates pair well with wines as well.

Choosing your chocolate

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Your choice of chocolate should reflect the wine you want for the night. If you’re looking at something sweeter, then you definitely want a sweeter wine like a port to help bolster the sweetness.

For those into the more bitter dark chocolate, the Grenache should be your set course of action. Again, those flavors are going to compliment each other perfectly.

Small chocolate shops are going to have the best quality and selection for what you are looking for. In this area, we are lucky to have a few options at our disposal.

Local Chocolatiers

What are you pairing with your wine this Valentine’s Day?

Categories: Food/Drink, Wine

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