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This type of dessert provides the challenge of strong flavours that may combine sweetness with some bitterness, together with a very enshrouding texture that can smother the flavours of all but the most powerful of wines.


If the dessert uses fairly pure black chocolate and is not too sweet, one should opt for young red fortified wines whose warmth, powerful flavours and tannins are able to match the intensity of the chocolate. Young vintage or late-bottled vintage ports, or similar types of wines, are the obvious choices here.

If the recipe includes other ingredients, such as milk, coffee, caramel or fruit, one can move to the oxidative type of wine with its amber colours. During their ageing process, these wines have developed, alongside their fruit flavours, complex oxidative and spicy aromas that are useful here.



French wines

Reds ”Vins Doux Naturels“ (fortified and sweet): Maury, Rasteau, Rivesaltes (Grenat), Banyuls (Rimage) Reds ”Vins Doux Naturels ambrés“ (oxidative): Maury (vieux), Banyuls, Banyuls Grand Cru, Rivesaltes Tuilé



European wines

Fortified and sweet reds: Ruby, LBV or Vintage Port (for black chocolate) and Tawny Ports (Portugal), Vin Santo Rouge, Recioto della Valpolicella Amarone, Marsala (Italy), Malaga, Xérès Pedro Ximenez and Cream, Montilla (Spain)



New World wines

Fortified and sweet, reds and tawny: port and sherry styles



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