7 myths about red wine and chocolate

Weinglas mit Weißwein als Pairing für Schokolade

There are many myths about wine and chocolate. While many sommeliers always serve dessert wines with chocolate, others are firmly convinced that no wine actually goes well with chocolate. In contrast, there is the popular opinion that red wine and chocolate always go together. But what's the point? And what does the whole thing look like with fine chocolate? We dispel the 7 most common myths! 

#1 Red wine and chocolate always go together

Not a single chocolate tasting goes by without the combination of red wine and chocolate being discussed at some point. Red wine is often brought along, especially at evening tastings. And although we are of course always happy about so much effort, the sad truth is that red wine and chocolate do not necessarily always make a perfect pair. While bitter supermarket chocolate often clashes with the dryness of a red wine, with fine chocolate it is often the acidity that does not necessarily go well with every red wine. Or the chocolate is very subtle, with subtle aromas that are quickly drowned out by the red wine. Nonetheless, there are great ways to combine red wine and chocolate. However, the search for a perfect match should be approached carefully and progressed with little bits and sips.

Chocolate tasting with wine pairing A chocolate tasting with Theyo is always something special

#2 Wine has more flavors than other luxury foods

If you search for “tastings” on the internet, you will find a long list of wine tastings... fortunately, theyo chocolate tastings are also becoming increasingly common ;-), whiskey tastings, cheese tastings and now even olive oil tastings. While the rumor persisted for a long time that wine has the most flavors , chocolate experts are now taking a stand against it. According to them, chocolate is one of the few luxury foods that can have more flavors than wine.

#3 Only dessert wines go well with chocolate

When asked for pairing recommendations in our tastings, we often suggest Port, Muscat or Gewürztraminer. On the one hand, because (dark) chocolate and sweet wine are simply a great combination and on the other hand, because you can't go wrong. Of course you can make it easy for yourself and choose dessert wines with chocolate. The only problem: you'll miss a lot! Sweet wines go particularly well with strong chocolates and can also tone down the bitterness of regular supermarket chocolate. However, if you have fine chocolate on hand, it's worth taking a closer look. Because these fine, not at all bitter chocolates do not need any sweet wines to balance them out. Combined with a suitable wine, they can create a completely new, exciting taste experience.

#4 Dry red wines and chocolate don't mix

It is probably already clear to attentive readers at this point that this myth also relates less to fine chocolate and more to ordinary supermarket chocolate. In fact, the combination of a dry red wine and an ordinary “dark chocolate” is usually quite a failure. As already described, the bitterness of the chocolate clashes with the tannins in the red wine. Since the bitterness in supermarket chocolate usually comes from “over-roasting” the cocoa beans, it makes sense to look for fine chocolates with gently roasted beans. You can find these in any well-stocked chocolate shop or online of course... we have an idea too ;-) In general: while strong red wines (also aged in wood) with slightly tannic notes are a little more difficult to harmonize with dark chocolate, they can combine well with milk chocolate. Red wines with a slightly natural sweetness - from wooden barrels - often go well with dark chocolate. Chocolates around 70% with little acid are ideal here.

#5 Chocolate and white wine don't mix

So far this has mainly been about red wine. This is because most of our tasting participants don't even consider white wine with chocolate. Red and white wine go equally well (or badly). For example, fruity chocolates – around 70% – go well with fruity white wines. Make sure that the chocolate is fruity but not sour. Too much acid could clash with the acidity of the wine. Strong white wines, on the other hand, go well with milk chocolate and caramel-white chocolate.

#6 Sparkling wine and chocolate never mix

Chocolate generally doesn't go well with sparkling wine and champagne - that's the popular, albeit inaccurate, opinion. Admittedly, pairing is not that easy here either. However, you rarely go wrong with champagne and white chocolate. The right (dark) creamy milk chocolate also often harmonizes perfectly with sparkling wine and champagne. In general, white sparkling wines often go a little better with chocolate than red ones. And of course what always works: champagne truffles or truffles in a glass with sparkling wine or champagne.

#7 When it comes to wine and chocolate, it's all about the taste

At Theyo, we attach particular importance to the effect chocolate has on the tongue. Whether with or without wine and sparkling wine: the most important thing for us is that the chocolate was produced 100% fairly and without child labor and was grown sustainably. You can find a small, fine selection of such chocolates in our shop or - put together by us - in our Theyo tasting boxes .

FAQ about red wine and chocolate

Which chocolate goes well with red wine?

As described in the previous article, this question is not easy to answer. A combination that works well in most cases is dark chocolate and a sweet dessert wine like Gewürztraminer or Muscat.

What doesn't go well with red wine?

If we're talking about the combination of red wine and chocolate, you shouldn't combine a dry red wine with 'cheap' supermarket chocolate, for example, as the flavors will collide.

Which sweet goes well with red wine?

We love the chocolate and red wine combination! The combination is not necessarily the easiest, but in the article above you will find tips and tricks on how to achieve a great chocolate and red wine pairing.

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