Wine with Chocolate
Notes by Sue Courtney
Wines were tasted blind
Rapaura Springs Reserve Marlborough Pinot Gris 2017
Light gold with an attractive fragrant aroma of poached pear and a soft citrussy zing to the off dry flavours that are full of delicious honey poached pear.
Choc match: Whittaker’s Nelson Pear and Manuka Honey in Milk Chocolate. Enhances the freshness of the wine but the sweet milky creamy chocolate is the overall lingering taste.
13% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $14.99.
Main Divide North Canterbury Gewurztraminer 2016
Crisp, dry and oily smelling and strong and spicy to the taste with tingles of ginger and candied lime with abundant musk flavours in a full-bodied, off dry style.
Choc match: Cadbury Dairy Milk Turkish Delight. A sweet sugary chocolate that needs the wine to balance it out, which it does with a peppery vibe and the musky taste of Turkish Delight lingers.
14% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $17.99.
Archangel Central Otago Pinot Noir 2013
Rich ruby red in the glass with an alluring earthy savoury scent infused with leather and spice yet surprisingly fruity to the taste with still fresh acidity, lightly firm tannins, spiced tamarillo and bittersweet berries.
Choc match: Whittaker’s West Coast Buttermilk Caramelised White Chocolate. The chocolate is quite sweet and cloying on its own but makes the wine seem silky smooth and rich with a lingering creamy caramel taste. A winning match.
14% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $35.99.
Zolla Primitivo Di Manduria 2016 – Salento, Italy
A vibrant black red. The bouquet is rich and ripe with wisps of cocoa powder and black cherries and the taste is sweet, ripe, gutsy and full-bodied with prunes and cherries, an earthy savoury undercurrent and smooth tannins that make it seem almost seamless in its flow.
Choc match: Cadbury Dairy Milk - Milk Chocolate. This old favourite seems dry on its own compared to the voluptuous wine but it balances the wine’s sweetness beautifully and introduces a fresh acid zing.
14% alc. Cork. First Glass Price: $28.99.
McManis Family Vineyards Petite Sirah 2016 – California, USA
Vibrant purple red with crimson edges. The leathery bouquet hints of a savoury wine but there's a juicy plum and mulberry sweetness to the taste with earth, straps of leather and a sprinkle of pepper on a bed of fine tannins.
Choc match: Cadbury Old Gold Roasted Almond Dark Chocolate. Makes the wine seem full, smooth and seamless. Good match.
13.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $18.99.
Chocoholic Pinotage 2016 – Darling, South Africa
Dark ruby red with garnet edges. Aromas of cherry jam and spice and quite peppery in the savoury palate with lightly firm tannins and a smoky touch to the finish.
Choc match: Cadbury Dairy Milk Black Forest. The chocolate is milky and sweet but the sweetness is toned down by the wine and the glace cherry in the chocolate is the lingering taste. Good match.
14% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $15.99.
Mister Riggs The Truant McLaren Vale Shiraz 2015 – South Australia
Deep dark red. Ripe and fruity smelling with touches of vanillin oak, chocolate and cherry then spicy and peppery to the taste with velvety tannins, plums and cherries, irresistibly smooth in its flow.
Choc match: Cadbury Dairy Milk packed with Crunchie. This is a milky chocolate and not overly sweet, but makes the wine seem a little more earthy and savoury and drier than it seemed on its own.
14.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $18.99.
Chocolate Box Dark Chocolate Barossa Shiraz 2016 – South Australia
Inky black red. Deep intense scent of cedar and leather with hints of red berries. Beautiful fine tannin structure, fresh acidity, purity of plum and raspberry fruit, a tingle of pepper and a silky chocolate-like smoothness to the finish.
Choc match: Cadbury Dark Milk with Roasted and Caramelised Hazelnuts. The nut flavours are strong and the match brings out a bitterness in the wine. Not a good match.
15% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $20.99.
Grant Burge Barossa Ink Shiraz 2016 – South Australia
Inky black red with vibrant crimson edges. The chocolate and plum bouquet is cloaked with vanilla and the taste is ripe and voluptuous with fine velvet tannins, juicy plum, prune and bottled cherry fruit, a sprinkle of pepper and a well-balanced nutty oak note to the creamy finish.
Choc match: Whittaker’s Black Doris Plum and Roasted Almonds in Dark Chocolate. This is a silky smooth chocolate, not overly sweet, not overpoweringly nutty, nice on its own and an excellent match to this wine.
14.5% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $19.99.
St Hugo Coonawara Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 – South Australia
Deep dark red hinting of a little age. There's mint wafting through the bouquet and heaps more in the taste. A firmly structured wine, quite dry with savoury oak and plum and cassis fruit that is starting to fade as bottle developed earthy leathery characters take over yet the cabernet fruit sweetness still signs off the finish.
Choc match: Cadbury Old Gold Dark Chocolate with Peppermint. While the mint is complimentary, the chocolate brings out a bitterness in the wine.
14.1% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $33.99.
Villa Maria Reserve Noble Riesling Botrytis Selection 2016
Sunshine gold. Candied orange fills the bouquet and the sticky, delicious, nectar-like taste is crammed with luscious liquid honey and candied tropical fruit with a vibrant and beautifully balanced citrussy zing.
Choc match: Whittaker’s Fijian Ginger and Kerikeri Mandarin in Dark Chocolate. This is a excellent chocolate on its own and goes beautifully with the wine, foiling the sweetness a little. The chocolate is subtle in the match, the ginger and mandarin flavours are complimentary and the wine’s flavours are the lasting memory. Excellent combo.
10% alc. Screwcap. First Glass Price: $28.99. 375ml.