It is inevitable that one day someone may ask you How to Pair Wine With Chocolate.
It is happened to me which is why I decided to learn more about it.
How to Pair Wine With Chocolate
This is the easy way to figure out this magical pairing.
Or I should say, a method that you may find to be easier to understand than others.
It is good to know how to pair chocolate with wine.
This is because accidentally serving the wrong wine with the wrong chocolate can certainly disappoint the palate.
And, we do not want to disappoint the palate. At least, I do not want to.
The truth is that both wine and chocolate have a lot in common.
I mean, besides the obvious devoted fans. For many of us, if you enjoy your wine then you probably enjoy your chocolate as well.
Sure, both wine and chocolate can serve as a special treat that you can enjoy.
Both are not something that you would eat or drink all of the time or maybe even every day. Yet, both chocolate and wine are both something that you may indeed reward yourself with. I know that I have!
But, there are a things that the two have in common beyond being a special treat.
Often, these common traits will have something to do with how your pair them. This could also include how you pair wine and chocolate together and with other foods.
For starters, both chocolate and wine can have their own deep rich taste.
The deep rich taste comes from the polyphenols or antioxidants. You may already know that both wine and chocolate are suppose to be good for us thanks to these antioxidants (in moderation of course).
Both wine and chocolate can be bitter in taste.
That bitter taste comes from the antioxidants. When it comes to chocolate, dark chocolate has more of the antioxidants it has and the more bitter it tastes. When it comes to wine, a dry wine will be less sweet and thus, more bitter. It really is all about the tannins and everything getting along.
The good news, in some ways, is that we can add ingredients to the chocolate and make pairing easier to do!
Milk chocolate has both sugar and milk products added to it to neutralize that bitter taste. This makes milk chocolate easier to pair with wine.
However, when it comes to pairing wine with chocolate, sometimes a similar level of taste can work together with one another.
Confusing as it may sound, there are times when a full-bodied wine can taste amazing with a higher level of chocolate. On the flip side, a milk chocolate or sweeter chocolate can get along great with medium or lighter bodied wine.
By the way, while you are here you may also be interested in these ideas.
How to Pair Wine With Chocolate
I am going to make this list short and simple to understand.
Let us start with the chocolate end of it.
Certainly, you know that there are different levels of chocolate.
Chocolate is categorized by the amount of chocolate liquor is in it and in comparison to the other ingredients. The level of liquor also has an effect on the color of the chocolate.
Dark Chocolate is the most intense of the chocolates.
This is not to be confused with baking chocolate which has no sugar added to it and is intended to be used in baking and not eating as a snack. The true definition of dark chocolate can actually be regulated depending on where you are in the world.
As I mentioned above, it is the polyphenols in dark chocolate that give it the bitter taste. It is about 70-90% cacao.
Dark Chocolate-Bitter Sweet Chocolate
Bitter Sweet Chocolate is at least 35 percent pure chocolate with a small amount of sugar added to it. It is usually around 60-70% cacao. Bitter Sweet Chocolate pairs well with a Zinfandel, Pinot Noir, Merlot, or Port Wine.
This is a less of a bitter dark chocolate thanks to the other ingredients that are added to it. This chocolate falls between a milk chocolate and bitter sweet chocolate in cacao falling at around 50-60%. Pair your Semisweet chocolate with Cabernet Sauvignon, Port Wines, or a Riesling.
Milk Chocolate is about as palette friendly as a chocolate can get.
Milk products are added to this chocolate to make it more creamy and thus, easier to eat. As a result, this chocolate pairs best with a variety of wines. Pair your milk chocolate with Muscato, Pinot Noir, or Merlot.
Lastly, White Chocolate.
This is actually cocoa butter plus a milk product but, without a cacao.
What is nice about white chocolate is that it can go nicely with sweeter wines.
Pair your white chocolate with Champagne, Moscato, or a Pinot Noir .
And here are a few more tips for you when you pair your wine with chocolate.
- Red wines can go great with dark chocolate.
- Usually a sweet wine with a sweet chocolate can be a hit!
- Milk Chocolate is the easiest chocolate to pair with wine.
- Think about matching darker chocolates with redder wines and lighter chocolates with lighter bodied wines.
- If you are tasting more than one kind of chocolate and wine pairing, start with the lighter chocolate and bodied wines.
- If in doubt, go sweeter on the wine and not the chocolate.
- Brut Champagne does not pair well with chocolate.