The Skinny on Chocolate and Wine

The Skinny on Chocolate and Wine


Fifty-eight million pounds and over $345 million dollars—that’s the amount of chocolate purchased the week of

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Valentine’s Day. So, chances are, if you have a valentine (or even if you don’t) you are going to be indulging in some chocolate on Cupid’s Day. This might lead you to the question, “What wine should I pair with my chocolate hearts and truffles?“ I am so glad you asked!

It’s important to note that a good pairing will depend on the type of chocolate you’re savoring. Overall, you want to match bolder, darker chocolates with bigger wines and lighter, sweeter chocolates, like white or milk, with lighter wines. In my opinion, sweet and fortified wines work better with chocolate than dry wines. Before you start writing letters to disagree with me —I do acknowledge that there are some dry red wines, like Cabernet or Zinfandel, that can work wonderfully.

Without further ado, here are my suggested pairings for dark, milk and white chocolate. All you need to do is invite the right person and add some love.

Try these pairings for Dark Chocolate…

Banfi Brachetto d’Acqui (Piedmont, Italy)

One whiff of the Banfi Brachetto brings images of roses and raspberries to mind. This sweet sparkler has a clean finish that is perfect for your next bit of chocolate. The acidity of this wine also makes it a good paring for spicy Asian dishes or salads with berry vinaigrettes. Retails for about $20.

Warre’s “Otima” 20 year Tawny Port (Portugal)

Aged for 20 years in seasoned oak barrels, this tawny port has perfectly balanced tannins and acids making each sip bright and elegant. Flavors of nuts and raisins make it a great match for chocolate mousse or chocolate with nuts. Aged tawnies are made for consumption and will not improve significantly with added age, so drink up! Retails for about $52.

Domaine de la Rectorie Banyuls (Roussillon, France)

Made from slightly raisinated Grenache grapes, this is a definite soul mate for chocolate! This wine is full and smooth with flavors of red berries and a touch of spice. Retails for about $36.

 Try this pairing for White Chocolate…

Ceretto Santo Stefano Moscato d’Asti (Piedmont, Italy)

Fruity, Fizzy and aromatic, this Moscato will make you as giddy as your first crush! Delicious with every sip and only 5.5% alcohol, this is a great lunch or brunch wine, too. Pair with your white chocolate treats for a heavenly combination. Retails for about $24. 

Try this pairing for Milk Chocolate…

Yalumba Museum Muscat (Australia)

Made from the red and pink varieties of Muscat, this “sticky” from Yalumba is the perfect sip with milk chocolate. Yalumba is one of the oldest family run wineries in Australia and delivers great value across all its wines. This sweet Muscat is amber in color with ginger and orange aromas and a touch of rose petal. Retails for about $18 for a half bottle.