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Perfect Wine and Chocolate Pairings

Chocolate and Wine Pairing IdeasDo you have a chocolate lover who also loves wine in your life?

Whether you are looking for gift ideas (like Todd's great post on Wine and Chocolate gifts) or just want to indulge in some pairings yourself, the idea of wine and chocolate pairings is enough to make your mouth water. Wine and chocolate are probably two of my favorite things in this world and when put together properly, they can turn around even my worst mood.

How do you figure out which wines and chocolates are best together? I have good news and bad news. The good news is that there isn't a “right” or “wrong” pairing because it depends on your personal preference. The bad news is that I can't just tell you the right or wrong pairing because it depends on your personal preference.

Last year I wrote about the Chocolate and Wine tasting my husband and I did on a Disney Cruise. The fun part was that with each alcohol you had various chocolates to taste so that you could figure out what you personally liked best. It was delightful and particularly enlightening in that everyone in the room seemed to disagree on what they liked.

Wine and Chocolate Pairings

In general, here are a few tips::

  • The sweeter the chocolate, the sweeter the wine needs to be. Because of that, dark chocolate tends to be a little bit easier to pair.
  • The pairing can actually change the flavor of the wine so be sure to try a few different chocolates with each wine to figure out what you like best.
  • Dark chocolate and red wine are usually a safe pairing assuming you like both. You can get away with full-bodied red wines as long as the dark chocolate cacao content is high (50% or higher, preferably around 70%).
  • Milk chocolate pairs with “dessert wines” and can pair with White Zinfandel if that is your thing. If you are a sweet white drinker, milk chocolate is better than dark chocolate.
  • White chocolate may not actually be “chocolate” but is actually really good for pairing because there isn't any cocoa flavor to compete with. Sweet wines work well and also fruity wines.
  • What chocolate should you pair with Champagne? Some people will say “none” and others will say “all.” Stick with a sweeter Champagne to ensure it is at least as sweet as whatever chocolate you choose.
  • Pairing truffles and filled chocolates is more difficult but also a nice experiment. If you have a box of assorted chocolates, grab 2 different bottles of wine and spend the evening with a friend mixing and matching the flavors. You might be surprised which you like best!

Are you a fan of wine and chocolate together? Do you have a favorite pairing?

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