There’s nothing like the near-perfect pairing of wine and chocolate. Maybe it’s because the process for creating wine is very similar to that of chocolate (both are fermented with the same yeast, believe it or not!). Or, maybe it’s because winemakers and chocolatiers take immense pride in their craft – and it shows!
With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, it’s this dynamic duo’s time to shine. But what types go best together? Keep reading to create these wine and chocolate matches made in heaven.
A guide to pairing specialty chocolates with wine
You’ve received that heart-shaped box full of specialty chocolates from your Valentine but want to sip on the perfect wine to go with it. We’re here to help. If you’ve been gifted:
Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter, sip on a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon. Chocolate and Peanut Butter are already a match made in heaven, but adding Cabernet Sauvignon into the mix sweetens the deal even more. Cabernets that have particularly fruity notes like blackberry or cherry take it one step further.
Milk Chocolate Raspberry, have a glass of Zinfandel. The typical notes of raspberry in Zinfandel only heightens this pairing to a new level.
Milk Chocolate Toffee, enjoy a glass of Port. The sweet flavor of toffee makes the perfect complement to the most recognizable name in dessert wines.
Dark Chocolate Walnut, drink a glass of Sherry. The nutty, dried fruit characters of Sherry lend themselves perfectly to the combo of dark chocolate and walnuts (or any other nut for that matter).
Milk Chocolate Almond, pair with a glass of Merlot. The ripe, red fruit notes and light to medium body of Merlot works well with the smooth taste of milk chocolate and almond.
Selecting the perfect chocolate for your wine
So, you’ve got that special bottle of wine from your wedding, latest anniversary, or getaway to that special place in you and your partner’s heart. What chocolate should you pair with it? If you have a:
Zinfandel, this takes center stage when pairing with dark chocolate. A late harvest Zinfandel works especially well with this chocolate!
Banyuls, a sweet, fortified Grenache-based red made in Southern France, this is also a match for dark chocolate. This wine works well too with creamier chocolate desserts like dark chocolate lava cake.
Port, this is a great choice to pair with milk chocolate (or even dark chocolate) that is sure not to disappoint! Ruby Port or Tawny Port pair best, dependent on the wine you have planned to drink.
Syrah or Pinot Noir, these work best when paired with sweeter chocolates like milk chocolate, especially lighter bodied Pinot Noir.
Riesling, this is a perfect match for white chocolate (which, fun fact, is actually not chocolate as it doesn’t contain cocoa!). White chocolate is the most versatile chocolate to pair with wine, meaning the exotic sweetness of Riesling works well with its typical nutty caramel and vanilla flavor.
Sauvignon Blanc, especially if there are more with citrus notes, pairs nicely with with a white chocolate and is sure to please.
Have you tried any of these pairings before, or are planning to for Valentine’s Day? We Want to know what you think! Share your thoughts in the comments, or over social media by tagging our handle @Coravin.