Tag Archive: wine

Wine and Chocolate 101: Pairing Advice

Chocolate is a treat that many people desire and love to indulge in. It goes with many things, including wine, but needs to be paired accordingly for the best flavours to really come from the combination.

If you’re a wine and chocolate lover but you’ve never really experimented with both together, this expert guide will give you the best pairing advice for both wine and chocolate so you can gain a better tasting experience.

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Chocolate And Wine Events

In celebration of excellent pairings, the Hotel Los Gatos now gives you Fireside Fridays as the perfect getaway from a seemingly busy week in Silicon Valley. This event features a wine and chocolate ensemble from 5pm to 7pm every Friday for the whole month of April and May.

Every week, they will also showcase a local variety of cheeses and an array of delectable taste tests. If this sounds good to you, you'll find the hotel located in the friendly neighborhood of Los Gatos, just a few minutes away from the airport of San Jose.

Local wines from the Santa Cruz  Mountain area are served.  So enthusiasts can enjoy Testarossa, Thomas Fogarty, the Mountain Winery to name a few. The tangent Dio Deka restaurant and a Michelin-star treasure is a sight for anyone who wants to enjoy a very relaxing couple's weekend. Reservations of the surrounding hotels and any conference facilities can be reserved and booked through their website of www.hotellosgatos.com.
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Chocolate Wine

Andrew Browne, founder of chocolate wine, said: "We thought the market would be female and young, but we’ve found that it has much broader appeal," Be it men or women, and even older and experienced wine lovers, people are raving about the product.

The Chocolate Shop is a brand owned by Washington-based Precept Wine. It was introduced January last year in the U.S. with the use of a Bordeaux blend coming from California, with some sugar and natural chocolate added.

"We called it the chocolate lover's wine," says Browne. In the UK, it was released last November. Here the product would be classified as an "aromatised wine-based drink".
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Chocolate and Wine Pairing

Although wine is pleasurable all its own, most people pair it with an array of different foods as it magnifies the tastes of those food. But did you know that wine and chocolate make a good pair? When the combination is created correctly, it gives a divine blast of taste in the mouth.

First and foremost, you need to make an appropriate choice of chocolate. Grabbing any chocolate bar available won't be enough as they don't hold distinctive flavors. Gourmet chocolates are your best bet, be it dark, white, or milk chocolate.

With regard to the wine you’ll be pairing the chocolate with, you need to find one that is at least as sweet as the chocolate, maybe even slightly sweeter. One of the main rules in pairing them is that the distance between wine and chocolate sweetness should always be short because if the wine isn't sweet enough, the sour notes of wine will make it appear hollow, which makes it a horrible combination.
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Chocolate Categories and Pairings

Over the last couple of centuries, the cacao bean been has been used in many different ways such as medicine, as money, etc.  But today, we eat it almost exclusively for pleasure.

There are different varieties of cacao beans and it has been said that each strain has been significantly changed due to its tree’s ability to naturally cross-pollinate, not to mention all the intended hybridization of the cacao bean for the past centuries.

Cacao beans go through a lot of processing to produce the chocolate we all love. They are harvested, fermented, dried, roasted, and ground to make chocolate liquor, which is then further processed into cocoa solids and cocoa butter.
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A Refreshing, Summer Pairing

Like most people, I crave a sweet treat at the end of a meal.  In the summer, when food is generally on the lighter side, I like something sweet but not TOO sweet.

After you‘ve eaten your grilled chicken breasts and pasta salad, try this pairing between Ghirardelli LUXE MILK™ Toffee and Round Hill Chardonnay.
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Chocolate and Red Wine: Intelligent

Chocolates are one of the most popular sweets, definitely loved by a lot of people. Research has shown that chocolates tend to stimulate mental attentiveness, and it also helps in regulating good mood.  As a chocolate lover you probably know this.

But have you thought about wine?  It has a lot in common with chocolate.

A glass of red wine is not only yummy, but studies show that red wine lowers the risk of heart attack for middle-aged people. This luscious drink (in moderation of course) can also increase good cholesterol (HDL) and decrease bad cholesterol (LDL).
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Chocolate Dipped Strawberries and Champagne

When you put a fresh strawberry into the bottom of a champagne glass and then pour the champagne, just watch the bubbles fly off the strawberry at a record rate of speed!

The strawberry gives more surface area from which to produce bubbles.  For this reason alone, a strawberry in champagne is very romantic.  And let’s not forget that a champagne soaked strawberry is oh-so-delicious! 

Personally, I prefer the strawberry on the side, covered in rich, dark chocolate!
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Moser Roth 85%

It's after 9 pm, the kids are in bed, and I am in the mood to r-e-l-a-x.  I decide to try a chocolate bar I have not had before, Moser Roth premium dark 85%.   This bar is intensely nutty, soft on fruit and earth.  The snap is hard and the melt is slow to release its flavors. 

I can sense that the bar lacks a little something, and then the light goes on.  I need to pair this bar with wine.  Since I don't have time to pick and choose, I reach for the malbec I have on hand.  It is a 2008 Reserve from Alma Andina vineyard, Mendoza region Argentina.  The label set me up to be hopeful as it describes the tasting notes concentrated in red and black fruit flavors, hints of toasted vanilla with a long cherry finish. 
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New Lindt Chocolate Flavors

Good News!  Lindt is expanding its Excellence chocolates with two new premium creations.  Introducing…..

Excellence Roasted Almond and Excellence Black Currant

The roasted almond variety combines dark chocolate with slivered almonds, and the black currant variety combines dark chocolate with tart, dried black currants and roasted slivered almonds.
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