Chocolate Wine for Valentine’s Day
New wine products made with cocoa make for a perfect dinner pairing on the 14th and beyond.
When it comes to celebrating Valentine’s Day at the dinner table, red wine and chocolate seem like a natural match. But this year, winemakers across the country are producing wines that take the pairing to another level.
Chocolate wines—made with wine and infused with chocolate and, in some cases, cream—have been popping up from producers across the country. For some, this comes just in time for the Hallmark holiday.
“You have to use a good, clean base wine [when making these products],” says Hal Landvoigt, director of winemaking for Precept Wine in Washington State. His product, Chocolate Shop, comes in a variety of flavors priced around $15. And he’s just one of many in the industry embracing the winemaking technique that seems to be taking off.
Here are six chocolate wines you can uncork on the 14th and beyond:
Chocolate Shop: This chocolate wine from Washington State’s Precept Wines is made with a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Cabernet Franc. It’s infused with chocolate and aged in oak. Flavors include Chocolate Red Wine, Chocolate Strawberry and Crème de Cocoa, all priced around $15.
ChocoVine: Distributed by Clever Imports, this red wine product is made with dark chocolate and Dutch cream to create flavors akin to Baileys Irish Cream—or chocolate milk with a splash of brandy. Available for $12, the product comes in four flavors: ChocoVine Original, Whipped Cream, Espresso and Raspberry.
Cocoa di Vine: An Opici Wines product, Cocoa di Vine is made with a white-wine blend sourced from Argentina and has rich milk chocolate flavors with vanilla and caramel notes. The bottle boasts a shelf-life of 9–12 months when stored in the refrigerator and is best served chilled. There are Chocolate & Wine, Chocolate Cherry & Wine or Chocolate Espresso & Wine flavors available for $11.
NV Désirée Chocolate Dessert Wine: This Port-style product combines a blend of Zinfandel, Syrah and Touriga Nacional with chocolate. It comes from Rosenblum Cellars and has a whopping 18% alcohol, approximately $17.
Truffle Merlot: Made with 99% Monterey Merlot and 1% dark chocolate, this wine is produced by the Maverick Wine Group. It has 13.5% alcohol and sells for $10 at Publix, Kroger and Total Wine retailers.
Chocolate Lab: Made with Concord grapes and chocolate flavoring, this product from Pleasant Valley Wine Company in New York’s Finger Lakes region has 10% alcohol, 14.8% residual sugar and sells for $9, with limited availability.