Looking to add a little extra romance to your Valentine's Day plans? Is your special someone a wine lover? A dessert fanatic? Or maybe even both? Then this is the article for you!
I often get asked if wine can pair up well with sweets? The answer is sometimes, and it really depends on what you are pairing. Here are some suggestions that should work well:
1) Black Forest Cake & Red Blends
The multiple layers of chocolate sponge cake, cherries, whipped cream and chocolate shavings really bring out the many rich layers that red blends tend to reveal.
Wine Suggestion: Domaine Bousquet's Gaia Red Blend ($19.99)
Its silky palate and soft rounded tannins, will be a winning addition to this dessert. It's notes of blackberries, spices and truffles will give the black forest cake an extra oomph.
2) Mexican Chocolate Cake & Pinot Noir
The pinch of chili really sets off a Pinot Noir with its low tannins and spice aromas.
Wine Suggestion: Cultivate Pinot Noir 2014 ($27.99)
The aromas of candied orange peel, pomegranate and berries shine through. As the wine finishes, a floral touch and whisper of black tea take this pairing to the next level.
3) Red Velvet & Syrah
A well-balanced Syrah helps to bring out the mild chocolate flavor that red velvet cakes possess.
Wine Suggestion: Qupé Central Coast Syrah ($20)
This wine has benefits of cooler climate grapes which lends a savory, spicy character with refreshing acidity and balanced alcohol, and at the same time has benefits of warmer climate grapes which give the wine a more forward-fruit character and adds suppleness and earlier drinkability.
4) Fruit Tarts & Moscato
A sweet Moscato pairs beautifully with light pastry and fruit tarts made with apples, pears, fresh berries or stone fruits such as peaches and apricots.
Wine Suggestion: Castello del Poggio's Moscato ($13)
A refreshing white wine with a soft delicate mousse and hints of creamy peach that will sweeten up the mood with just one sip.
5) Dark Chocolate Truffles & Chianti
A Chianti matches well with chocolate that has around 65% cocoa content.
Wine Suggestion: Castello Di Albola's Chianti Classico ($19)
The wine's tannins give its extraordinary texture: They are as concentrated as the fruit is mellow
6) Apple Pie & Pecorino
The sweet apple in the pie will enhance melon and apple notes while highlighting the wine's vanilla undertones.
Wine Suggestion: Ciu Ciu Offida Pecorino - Merlettaie ($18)
The medium-bodied, dry wine has an herbacious nose with floral, melon and apple notes. The wine finishes with a subtle touch of vanilla.
Special thanks to my colleague Krisna Bharvani for sharing these Valetnine's ideas with me. Give them a try with your sweetie or use these guidelines to create your own magical pairing.
by Brian Fry