Sunday, January 28, 2007

Musings on Chocolate

Last night whilst at an events at my wife's work - a chocolate evening I was left wondering - what to drink with chocolate. It's something that comes in so many guises - let's for a minute forget white chocolate which is completely lacking in any cocoa solids - yet from deep dark and bitter to creamy and sweet chocolate is a tough thing to try and match any wine to. The texture is something that is chocolates alone - so what can you drink? What will go well?
Forget drinking a lovely deep red Bordeaux or tannic red - no the thing to look for here is something sweet - but I'm not talking a Sauternes nor am I going to suggest Tokaji - no I'm going for a sweet red wine - ideal is one of the many Vin Doux Naturels produced, much of the time from Grenache, in Southern France and in the Rhone valley. Look for Rasteau Vin Doux Naturels (The Big Red Wine Company do a lovely one - or perhaps something from the Languedoc, a Banyuls or look out for the lesser known Maury - particularly the lovely 1928 Solera Maury - a really stunning wine with the depth and flavour to cope with anything chocolate can throw at it - sumptuous doesn't say enough!
If you're tempted to try something from the New World - go out and hunt down an Australian gem of Liqueur Muscat - a speciality of the Rutherglen region and there are two that are worth looking out for in particular, Brown Brothers produce a lovely dark, wine with muscovado flavours and Campbell's is a stunning buy at around £6 a bottle (available I believe in Waitrose!)

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