Just in time for Valentine’s Day: Hand crafted chocolate and expertly paired wine, spirits, and beer
Wine Education and Events Coordinator at Binny’s Beverage Depot Kristen Ellis and Crystal Taylor from KOHLER Original Recipe Chocolates join Roe Conn and Anna Davlantes with a Valentine’s Day guide to chocolate, wine, and spirits! Kristen scoured the vast offerings from Binny’s and KOHLER to present the perfect pairings that are guaranteed to impress.
You can also hear Kristen’s other picks and insight’s from the industry’s leading artisans on the Binny’s podcast, Barrel to Bottle.
Here are some of the picks:
Original Buttery Terrapin: We paired the Kelsey Creek Reserve Bourbon with this gem. The baking spice, caramel, and vanilla notes worked perfectly with the caramel and chocolate combination of the Terrapin. A tried and true love match.
Kelsey Creek Single Barrel $31.99
Butterscotch Hop: Since the name of this piece was the Butterscotch Hop, we wanted desperately to find a beer that paired well and by golly, we think we’ve got it! We turned to a rich rye ale that was aged in first-use rye whiskey barrels and it is a great fit. The creamy mouthfeel of the beer matched the creamy texture of the butterscotch yet the carbonation gave it a lively, refreshing characteristic that really hit home for us. We are very happy with this discovery!
Boulevard Rye on Rye Ale $14.99 4pack
Café & Crème: This chocolate on its own is simply divine. It really was a favorite of the group. We like the Kohler Dark Chocolate Brandy with this selection. At first, we thought it would be ‘too much chocolate’ but it wasn’t! The creamy flavors of the piece helped to give the pairing lift and the brandy had just enough bite to contrast with the rich, mouth-coating chocolate.
Kohler Dark Chocolate Brandy $34.99/$29.97
Blueberry Rare Facet: We tasted a dry sparkling wine compared to a sweeter style with this particular chocolate. While the brut most definitely did not work, as it rendered the wine even drier and more acidic, the demi-sec worked perfectly. Our selection was a Rose Demi-sec from Illinois Sparkling Co. The fruitiness of the chocolate and the red berry notes of the wine worked so well. We also like to shop local when we can so we’re really ticking all the boxes here.
Illinois Sparkling Co Demi Sec Rose $29.99
Dark Chocolate Heart: We found a few different pairings for this one!
- Lindeman’s Framboise 12oz $5.99
For a beer selection, we really enjoyed the Framboise Lambic from Lindemans. Once again, similar profiles working in tandem to create a memorable experience.
- Quinta do Noval 2011 LBV $22.99
Quinta do Noval LBV 2011. Port and chocolate is a classic pairing and this one worked so well for everybody. The dark berry fruit notes from the Port play so well with the brighter raspberry flavors. A safe bet.
- Earthquake Zin $23.99
It can be tricky pairing a dry wine with chocolate. Very tricky. We succeeded with Earthquake Zinfandel. The round, rich mouthfeel of the wine stood up to the texture of the dark chocolate and raspberry notes. When we are weary of dry wine with sweet food we found our preconceived notions totally shattered with how well this worked.
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