It’s that most dangerous of weeks of the year, it’s the week after Easter. All the Easter Eggs are on at bargain prices in the supermarkets to get rid of the stock. I try, god help me I try, to keep my chocoholic ways at bay all year, but I’m only human. Easter Eggs for 50p a pop? I’m not made of stone!
So maybe we just accept fate and have a week of hedonism? Not a bad idea I guess? So it’s time to talk about the old favourite topic, wine pairing with chocolate.
Going down the colours of chocolate, and starting with dark chocolate, I’ve got to go with Sauternes, a sweet dessert wine from the Bordeaux region of France. Dark chocolate has that bitterness, which matches with the marmalade tastes of the Sauternes, and the sweet vs bitter combo of the luscious wine with the full bodied chocolate is just great.
If you’re going down the road of those artisan 50% dark chocolates, then we’re looking at something like Pedro Ximenez sherry, another luscious dessert wine, this time from the southern tip of Spain. Again, seriously sweet, luscious body, and dried dark fruit flavour. A nice tip is vanilla ice cream, pour over a bit of PX, and then sprinkle chocolate shavings over the top. Amazing!
With milk chocolate, we’re starting to look at fortified wines. These are wines that are only partially fermented, so there is still residual sugar in them, but high alcohol from the addition of a grape spirit. Milk chocolate is a lot sweeter, and I personally think a bit lighter. So I reckon something like an entry-level ruby port would work just fine.
With white chocolate I want something with a bit more floral smell. There’s a grape out there called Muscat, and in the south of France it’s used to make a fortified wine called Vins Doux Naturel. Not as luscious in the body, but still plenty sweet, it’ll have a much lighter and fresher nose to it, and well worth a try!
Good luck with the will power, but if all else fails you’ve got some good tips now to turn the chocolate gorging into a bit of an event!