Thursday, February 23, 2012

A Perfect Wine and Chocolate Pairing...Barrel-Aged Shiraz and Semi-Sweet Organic Chocolate!

Last night I tried some really interesting wine: Konzelmann Estate Winery 2010 Barrel Aged Shiraz from the Niagara Peninsula. It was oak barrel aged, spicy and peppery.  I thought it might go well with a semi-sweet dark chocolate so I went to the cabinet and grabbed a Camino Dark 55% chocolate bar. I was right! They went perfectly together. The sweetness of the chocolate only complemented the wine, without modifying the flavour. It was a perfect pairing!

I moved on to an Equal Exchange Co-Op 55% Dark Chocolate with Almonds bar and it was also a fantastic pairing: the nuttiness combined with the spicy wine was an intriguing combination.  If you cannot find this chocolate bar, Camino has a similar one (http://www.lasiembra.com/camino/en/chocolate-bars/almonds) - I believe it is the same 55% dark chocolate that I mentioned above, only with almonds in it.  

So if you are looking to pair chocolate and wine, try a Barrel Aged Shiraz with notes of blackberry and spice with a 55% organic dark chocolate....with or without almonds!

Here is the package information from the chocolate that I tasted this week:

Camino Fair Trade, Organic Dark Chocolate, 55%, 100g
La Siembra Co-operative (Ottawa, ON Canada)
Made in Switzerland.
Organic Ingredients: cocoa mass*, golden cane sugar*, cacao butter*, whole cane sugar*, ground vanilla beans*. *Fair trade certified.  Minimum 55% cacao.  May contain traces of nuts, peanuts, soy and dairy products.

Organic & Fairly Traded Dark Chocolate with Almonds, 55% cacao, 3.5 oz (100 grams)
Equal Exchange (West Bridgewater, MA, USA)
Ingredients: *organic chocolate liquor, *organic raw cane sugar, *organic cocoa butter, organic chopped almonds (10%), *organic unrefined whole cane sugar, *organic ground vanilla beans. *Fair trade ingredient. by weight 90% fair trade content. May contain traces of milk, peanuts, hazelnuts, cashews, pistachios & pecans.

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