Wine and Dessert Pairings

How do you choose a wine that goes perfectly with a dessert? We tell you everything that you would want to know about picking a wine to enhance the flavors of a dessert.
Tastessence Staff
No meal is ever complete without that bite of a sweet delicacy. Desserts are impossible to resist for most people. Making a dessert even more delectable can be a glass of wine that just elevates the experience of having even the simplest of desserts to a gourmet experience. But picking the best wine to go with a dessert can be a tricky task. In this article, we tell you more about pairing your wine with your dessert and picking the right wine.
Complementing Wines with Desserts
The tradition of serving wines with desserts is something that originated in Italy. While in most other countries, it is a matter of etiquette to serve dessert with coffee or even tea, in Italy, where diners tend to extend their meals, wine has been a natural accompaniment to desserts. Most people have a problem deciding on a wine to serve with their final course. Experts tell you that there are three things that need to be considered if you want to serve wine with dessert. The first of these factors is the acidity of the wine, the second is the intensity of the wine, and the third, the sweetness of the wine. It is advisable that if you are serving fruits as the dessert, then you pick an acidic wine, with a wine that has intense flavors, the dessert needs to be equally flavorsome, and in any scenario, it is imperative to stick to a wine that is sweeter than the dessert itself. If not, then more often than not, the wine can seem not only acidic but also dull. All experts will tell you the importance of learning how to balance the flavors of the wine with the flavors of the dessert that you are serving.
Some of the best wines to serve with desserts are Port, Sauternes, Sherry, Madeira, and Marsala. Even Champagne is more often than not, a good bet, except if you are serving the Brut type of Champagne which will need a dessert that is not very sweet. There are some dessert wines that should definitely be served on their own and do not really require a food item to complement them. Most wine connoisseurs and chefs suggest that the darker the color of the dessert, the darker should be your choice of wine. These are some of the most important things to keep in mind while choosing a wine to complement the dessert that you are serving. Given below are some menu ideas that you can use to pair wine and dessert together.
Ideas to Pair Wine and Desserts
Now that you know what are the intricacies to keep in mind while picking out a dessert wine, let us take a look at the different menu ideas that you can use if you intend to serve wine with your desserts at the party that you are throwing.
Dessert Wine
Alcohol-flavored Bual Vouvray Demi-Sec
Apple Tart Late-Harvest Riesling, Demi-sec Sparkling Wines
Cake Late-Harvest Riesling, Muscat
Cheesecake Sauternes
Chocolate Lustau Muscat Sherry, Vintage Port
Coconut cupcakes Brachetto d'Acqui
Cookies Pretty much anything, especially a Vin Santo
Cream-Based Pie or Tart Late Harvest Riesling
Custards California Sparkling Wine, Muscat
Fresh Fruit, Dried Fruit Riesling, Muscat
Fruit Pie, Tart, Crisp Vendange Tardive, Pinot Gris
Ice Cream Sherry/Sake
Lime Tart Muscat
Mousse, Pudding, Trifle Late Harvest Gew├╝rtztraminer
Pecan Pie/Tart Malmsey Madeira
Poached Pears Red Wine
Salted Caramels Port
Tiramis├║ Champagne

The art of picking the right wine for the right dessert is something that you need to master. It will take you time to learn which wine goes with which dessert, complementing its flavor and also elevating its taste. But once you have learned how to pair a sweet, decadent delicacy with a sweet wine, you will never be fulfilled without that last sweet course.