Chocolate And Wine Pairing 101

Chocolate And Wine Pairing 101

screen_shot_2015-02-04_at_5_55_45_pm_2Red wine and chocolate on Valentine’s Day are like birds of a feather. They just go together. So romance your special someone with a great bottle of red wine this Valentine’s Day, then wow ‘em with a great chocolate finale.

Daily Sip Wine & Chocolate Pairing Tips:

1) The percentage of cacao in the chocolate will determine what it pairs best with. For example, we wouldn’t recommend pairing a light, milk chocolate with a heavy Napa Valley cabernet, as the wine will drown out the chocolate. We also wouldn’t recommend pairing a 90% cacao chocolate with sauvignon blanc, as the flavors will clash dramatically. So think about how bold, rich and powerful the wine is, then make your chocolate choice.

White chocolate pairs nicely with Champagne, as does very light milk chocolate. If you like pinot noir, get a slightly darker chocolate. Merlot, darker still. Cabernet or zinfandel, super dark and rich. At the most decadent end of the spectrum, pair a good Port with dark chocolate truffles.

Daily Sip Chocolate Picks:
TCHO Chocolate: This chocolate is made like wine, based on the varietal of cacao, which is to say the intrinsic flavor of the beans. Fun Valentine’s Day idea: taste four flavors (nutty, citrus, chocolaty, and fruity) and see which you prefer with wine. Find TCHO here. • Brix Chocolate: Chocolate literally made “for wine,” as the name “brix” would suggest. Brix Chocolate has specific pairing recommendations by grape variety for their milk, smooth, medium dark and extra dark chocolate. $9.99 for an 8-oz bar. Find the pairing recommendations and buy Brix Chocolate here.

2) Chocolate made with a hint of wine or that has some savory notes in it (like sea salt or curry powder) often pairs best with wine. The savory notes provide an awesome contrast to the chocolate and complement the wine.

Daily Sip Wine-Infused Chocolate Pick:
Royce’ “Nama Chocolate” with the fragrance of Pierre Mignon champagne ($18). Discover the amazing chocolates made from farm-fresh cream in Hokkaido, Japan. Find it here.

3) Outsource the pairing part!
If you’re looking for a pre-paired wine and chocolate kit, we recommend: • Vosges Haut Chocolat’s pairing of a Swanson Vineyards Oakville Merlot and a box of nine dark chocolate truffles ($89). Find it here.

Have another go-to favorite chocolate to give as a gift on Valentine’s Day? Share it below.

Photo courtesy of Royce’ Chocolate

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