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Wine & chocolate: A perfect pairing for Valentine's Day

5:19 AM, Feb 8, 2012   |    comments
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9NEWS Your Money Reporter Heidi McGuire found the right person to help you make the right purchase when pairing these popular indulgences.

Doug Caskey is the executive director of the Colorado Wine Industry and he brought in five bottles of local wines to pair with chocolates from local Boulder-based chocolatier Jenny Thamer of Lioni Chocolates. Thamer starter her business one year ago and currently sells her hand-crafted truffles online at, at Cured in Boulder, and at The Perfect Petal in Denver.

Caskey says the most important thing to keeping mind when choosing a wine to pair with chocolate is to buy what you like. If you force it, then chances are you're not going to like either. And keep it simple. Wine can be complex on its own, so try to keep your chocolate pairings to the basics like dark, milk, and white chocolate.

Caskey's local wine recommendations:

Red wines:
Colterris Cabernet Savingon, Palisade, CO -, widely available in liquor stores.

Two Rivers Winery Port, Grand Junction, CO -, widely available in liquor stores.

Caskey says a lot of people like the traditional combo of a Cabernet Savingnon with dark chocolate. The rich earthy tones compliment each other nicely, but he suggests a dark chocolate with a port. It's a sweet red wine that will pair well with the sweet chocolate. 

Light Dessert Wines:
BookCliff Vineyards Black Muscat, Boulder, CO -

Carlson Vineyards Cherry Wine, Palisade, CO -, widely available in liquor stores.

Caskey pulled two dessert wines to pair with Lioni's milk chocolate. Caskey says Calson's Cherry Wine is like cherry pie in a glass and the vineyard even offers a tasting of this sweet and tart wine with a chocolate rimmed glass. A must try if you're on the western slope.

Caskey says the Black Muscat is also a good choice, since it's a dessert wine, the sugars match the sugar in the milk chocolate nicely, so one doesn't taste bitter next to the other.

White Wine:
Desert Moon Vinyards Shiver Riesling, Englewood, CO -

The lighter your wine, the lighter your chocolate says Caskey, and that why he paired the Desert Moon Ice-wine, Shiver, with Lioni's white chocolate truffle. Caskey says this pairing is perfect because the acidy of this Riesling will help cut through the sweetness of the chocolate.

If you want a sample, Lioni Chocolates will be holding events at local shops between now and Valentine's Day.

Friday, Feb. 10 from 3 to 8 p.m. at The Perfect Petal (3600 W. 32nd Avenue, Denver). Lioni Chocolate and Helliemae's Handcrafted Caramels will create pop up store within a store at The Perfect Petal. There will be gift boxes to bring home or send to your sweetheart with flowers.

Saturday, Feb. 11 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Cured (1825 Pearl Street, Boulder). Join chocolatier Thamer at Cured to taste fresh chocolates and pick up a sweet treat for yourself or your love.

Feb. 11 - 31st Annual Chocolate Lovers' Fling, a benefit for Safehouse Progressive Alliance for Nonviolence (Boulder). Lioni Chocolate and Avery Brewing have created a new beer and chocolate pairing for this special fundraiser.

For those of you who just want to enjoy your chocolate with more chocolate, Thamer is offering some specialty truffles for Valentine's Day including Blood Orange & Fennel, Pink Salt and Caramel, Milk Chocolate & Hazelnut, and Dark Chocolate & Candied Ginger.

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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