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Society & Success

Pairing champagne with chocolate

Chocolate & Champagne pairing by Damien Souchet, G. H. Mumm Champagne brand ambassador at Fairmont the Norfolk. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA
Chocolate & Champagne pairing by Damien Souchet, G. H. Mumm Champagne brand ambassador at Fairmont the Norfolk. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA 

Wine and chocolate are a match made in heaven, but when you add some bubbles to it, not so much.

Champagne, also known as bubbly, is not a natural pairing for chocolate.

“You need a bold champagne that can hold up to the chocolate,” says Damien Souchet, GHMumm brand ambassador.

The champagne segment is one of the fastest growing in the fine liquor segment in Kenya.

Most gift packages come with a bottle of bubbly and a chocolate, which when had together, may not necessarily create a successful explosion of flavour on the palate.

A pairing of the GHMumm Cordon Rouge and white chocolate covered strawberries brings out the floral notes of the champagne while the extra cocoa butter in the white chocolate allows it to hold up to the bubbles of the champagne.

However, a milk chocolate truffle with the same champagne adds no flavour to either and instead creates a rough edge to the champagne.

Contrary to popular belief, champagnes are not sweet. Most are dry with only a few winemakers creating sweet and semi sweet variations.

A demi sec champagne which is a semi sweet champagne, will go better with an entre course with fish than a chocolate course.

“This is a daring pairing, which means it may or may not work,” says Souchet.

A rosè wine would bring out the cocoa notes in dark chocolate, making the chocolate even more chocolatey while bringing out the floral and earthy undertones in the wine.

In a rosè champagne pairing with a chocolate truffle, it is not as intense or successful a pairing.

The sweetness in the chocolate takes away the little sweetness in the champagne giving an even more acidic edge to the dry wine.

Creamy and fruity desserts hold up better with champagne.

So the next time you are shopping for champagne and chocolate, take into consideration the tasting notes of each to see what works with what or just opt for a champagne brunch or afternoon tea with champagne instead.

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