Chocolate and Wine pairing

Everybody loves the idea of pairing chocolate and wine, and with good reason. It's a dynamic duo which evokes romance. What's not to like? But the flavors of chocolate and wine aren’t always that compatible. Here are some tips for a blissful union.

Chocolate and Wine Sip Tip #1: Pair lighter chocolates with lighter wines; darker chocolates with full-bodied wines. Go from light to dark in your tasting session, starting with milk or lower percentage cacao chocolates and their corresponding wines.

Chocolate and Wine Sip Tip #2:
Suggestive pairings for Milk Chocolate: Merlot,  Riesling (debatable), Sauvignon Blanc and Dessert wines.
Local match ups:
2006 Liberty Lake Cellars Merlot
2009 Barrister Winery *Riesling
2010 Nodland Bebop *Riesling
2008 Robert Karl *Sauvignon Blanc
NV Latah Creek Wine Cellars Natalie's Nectar
2005 Grande Rhone Merlot
NV Mountain Dome Brut

Chocolate and wine Sip Tip #3
Pairings for Dark, Bittersweet and Semisweet chocolate: Zinfandel, Syrah, Tawny Port. Armagnac, and Cognac. If you're looking to pair up Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, or Sangiovese reds, they need to be well-aged to suitably pair with darker chocolates.

Local match ups:
2007 Arbor Crest Syrah
NV Townshend Vortex
2008 Barrister Sangiovese
2006 Nodland "Reserve" Cabernet Sauvignon
2007 Overbluff Cellars "Latour" Cabernet Sauvignon
2007 Whitestone Cabernet Sauvignon.
2006 Robert Karl Inspiritation
2008 Barili Cabernet Sauvignon

* Post note: I received an email from an unknown sender who strongly disagrees with pairing Riesling and  Sauvignon Blanc with Milk Chocolate. I am bringing it up as something to consider. But remember you are entitled to your opinion, as we don't all don't have the same palates. As always, I encourage you to discover your own. Thank you to all those sippers who helped research this post and if you like it together then by all means pair it. Cheers and Nibble, SIP

Forget Love...I'd rather fall in chocolate. Click on the link to find out where chocolate lovers unite locally:


Anonymous said…
Noway sauv blanc and chocolate go together. I have had desert riesling with a chocolatey desert that was a great match, but the cake also had a lot of fruit to it. But anyone who drinks Barrister riesling (which is actually quite good) and thinks it goes well with milk chocolate needs to have their pallet checked. I just gave it a go and it ruined the wine and made the chocolate seem terribly bitter. Did you even taste the pairings you are suggesting!!?? Sure, port and chocolate can go great, and some of those huge Aussie reds almost need something chocolatey but for some of these pairings maybe you should consider that the website you got a lot of this info from doesn't know much about wine?
Anonymous said…
What I disagreed with was your suggested pairing of Barrister riesling and milk chocolate. It was a bad pairing... I'm kinda surprised that you didn't allow my comment. You're gonna need to be able to accept criticism if you are going to be a public figure or especially if you have thoughts of being a wine journalist.
Unknown said…
I am more than happy to publish your comments and didn't realize I hadn't until I received your second one assuming that since it wasn't publish within a couple days, I had refused to do so. You are more than entitled to voice your opinion on my blog with a few exceptions.
As you know, we don't all have the same palate. As always, I encourage you to discover your own and hope that SIP of Spokane at times can be a guide to something new in local wine.
Just so you are aware, a group of six helped research the chocolate post. I will sometimes host tasting parties to get the opinion of more than just my palate.
Also keep in mind I do not claim to be a wine expert of any kind. But rather a long time lover of wine who has a thrist to learn more. I feel honored to have spent time with some of the best in the business. The few wines classes I've taken were not as helpful as time in the vineyard and shadowing winemakers and notable tasters. Wine is journey. My is a blast.
My thought on food and wine has always been if you like it together then by all means, pair it. After all yours is the only palate you are trying to please. A former chef and the Pixie Dust Chocolate owner pointed out in comments on facebook that the specifics on the milk chocolate matter just as much as the specifics on the wine. I thought this was a good point that I did not consider that as much as I did the wine. Lastly, anonyomus comments must be approved twice and therefore my not be promptly published.
Life's fast, sip slow.

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