1. Look for local wines and regional food from the same areas.
The wines we make are sourced from fruit grown in the Willamette and Rogue valleys. Local chocolates from these areas may be studded with marionberries, herbs, hazelnuts, smoked sea salt or even rose petals.
2. Get to know your wine.
“It’s important to find balance in the wine,” she said. “This includes aroma, taste, texture and overall impressions of the sip.” Consider the wine's look, smell and taste. Note your own personal discovery and flavors you identify on the palate.
“Think about your overall impression of the wine. Does it wrap you up in a warm blanket and make you feel cozy? Or does the wine poke at your and feel slightly sharp and rough?”
The host of our upcoming Wine & Chocolate Virtual Tasting, Willamette Valley Vineyards Winery Ambassador, Veronica Ball
3. Match “mirroring” flavors and try them.
“Mirroring flavors of the wine and food causes a perfect picture to form between the chocolate and wine, almost fusing the flavors together without one overpowering the other,” Veronica advised.
Consider a rich and spicy Cabernet Sauvignon paired with a bar of chili infused dark chocolate. Or white chocolate served with a chilled Rose.
Winery Ambassadors sample wine and chocolate at the Estate to find the best pairings.
4. Pair contrasting flavors and try those.
“A contrasting pairing is also fun because the food will make the wine possibly change and pop with new flavors, or the food will be elevated and change to contrast with the wine, but in a positive way,” Veronica said.
Perhaps that creamy milk chocolate will show off the brightness of a dry sparkling wine. Or a semi-sweet Riesling will deepen the flavors of a salty dark chocolate.
5. Some wines don’t need a pairing.
“Some wines do not need food in order to shine, but can simply be enjoyed on their own,” she suggested. “We don’t want to mess with the star of the show.”
Find inspiration in our Wine & Chocolate Collection that pairs our classic Oregon wine with local artisan chocolates. This collection is available for a limited time.
Veronica will lead us in a complimentary virtual tasting of this collection on Wednesday, February 9th at 4 pm. Order your Wine & Chocolate Collection by February 1st to receive it in time for the tasting.
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