People have been trying to pair chocolate and wine together for years. Many of these ‘chocolate wines’ will make you ill. There are, however, a few instances where chocolate and wine taste amazing together.
Take a look at the world of wine chocolate and candy, including some by the best chocolatiers in the United States. Now you have an even more solid excuse to open a bottle of wine while baking sweets…
A Champagne truffle has a portion of Champagne and marc de Champagne (aka grappa of Champagne) in the gooey middle. The taste of Champagne is actually very subtle, offering just a zing of ‘booziness’ similar to a rum ball. New York City chocolatier, Jacque Torres, created his Champagne truffles to resemble fat corks and fills them with ganache made with Taittinger Brut. Another NYC Chocolatier, Xocolatti, makes Champagne truffles that tingle your tongue like pop rocks.
Recipe: The Art of Dessert put in a lot of effort to their Champagne Truffle Recipe.
Champagne Truffle Purveyors
Port and Wine-Filled Truffles
As with Champagne truffles, wine truffles are made in a similar way. Wine is reduced and blended into a ganache that is tucked into a tempered chocolate mold. The character of red grapes comes through very well in a wine truffle. It’s popular to use a full-bodied red wine such as Port, Syrah or Cabernet Sauvignon in wine chocolate. One of our favorite wine chocolates is the dodecahedron shaped Port and rosemary truffle from Pix Patisserie in Portland, OR.
Wine Chocolate Purveyors
Wine as an ingredient in bundt cake and cupcake recipes adds acidity in a similar way that sour cream works in baking. Most recipes use about 1-2 cups of wine and do not reduce the wine, making the ‘wine flavor’ very faint. Red wines are blended with chocolate cake recipes and white wines with vanilla cake. More richly flavored wines such as Zinfandel and Moscato will actually flavor the cake more than using wine like Champagne, Syrah and Chardonnay. Select a higher-acidity wine or splash in a little vinegar if you’d like to try making your own wine cupcake recipe.
Wine Cupcake Recipe Blackberry Cabernet Cupcake Recipe
Wine Cupcake Makers
Port Wine Candy Pops
Wine hard candies are made with a wine reduction to increase the sugar level in the wine. While the most commonly made wine hard candies are made with Port wine, the potential to make any style of wine hard candy is limitless. The flavor of the wine shows through very well because it is the dominant ingredient besides sugar. We really enjoyed the recipe by Sprinkles Baking and hope to see more confectioners making wine hard candy in the future.
See Port Wine Lollipop Recipe on Sprinkles Baking
Wine Pâtes de Fruit
Pâtes de fruits are French jelly candy that is tossed in sugar. The jelly candies are typically made with various fruit and thickened with agar agar or pectin. Like wine hard candy, wine-based pâtes de fruits have a very identifiable wine flavor. If you plan to make them yourself, try reducing the wine before preparing the candy.
The Natural Candy Store carries wine candy made with White Zinfandel, White Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.
What are Wine Gums?
Wine gums are a low-bro English gummy candy that doesn’t actually have wine in them. Still, we think they’re pretty cool after watching this: