We talk about wine pairing with savory food often, to the extent that we may overlook the post-entrée possibilities. There are many schools of thought when it comes to matching vino with dessert—here are some notes from D.C., Virginia, and Maryland purveyors to consider:

  • Co-owner of Fleurir Chocolates Robert Ludlow recommends dark chocolate-covered honeycomb with sparkling wine or Champagne.
  • Travis Gray, wine director at Equinox, loves the classic pairing of champagne and fresh berries. He suggests a sweet Moscato-Brachetto with ricotta beignets, which the restaurant serves with a berry compote and lemon cream. Another favorite pairing is Royal Tokaji Aszu or Virginia Rieslings with their apple-rosemary tortino, made with Fuji apples and orange-blossom honey.
  • For a DIY tasting, Artfully Chocolate owner Eric Nelson recommends setting up a variety of chocolates with one wine varietal; start with the least strong flavors then progress toward the strongest. For sparkling wines, he suggests white chocolate or a berry-accented version. Milk chocolates go with Pinot Grigio, whereas a bolder white like Chardonnay works better with caramel. A red wine with stone fruit notes would go well with a pistachio or red berry-enhanced dark chocolate. The key is to remember that “cocoa beans are similar to grapes in that their terroir—region and climate in which they are grown—manifests itself through taste.”
  • While he prefers Scotch, Justin Stegall of Bakeshop speaks highly of apple pie or apple cupcakes with a late harvest Gewurztraminer or Reisling, as well as dark chocolates with Malbecs.
  • The duo behind Praline Bakery & Bistro, Susan Limb and Patrick Musel, matches cassis macarons with Kir de Bourgone, chocolate macarons with full-bodied reds, and passion fruit with Sauvignon Blanc. Their Walnut Dacquoise pastry is paired with a French aperitif Dubonne Rouge, or a tawny port.

[via On Tap Magazine]