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Jun 19, 2009 04:25 PM

Wine pairing for dolci or dolce?

I'm in desperate need for a wine pairing for the Italian dessert, dolci or dolce. Never heard of it until tonight and I need to buy the wine tomorrow.


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  1. Dolce is Italian for sweet or dessert. Dolci is the plural, i.e. sweets, desserts. If there's a specific sweet that goes by the name dolce, I'm not familiar with it. Can you provide details?

    Complicating things, young gorgonzola is called gorgonzola dolce. There's also a celebrated California Sauternes-style sweet wine called Dolce, but since you're looking for a wine pairing, that's probably not what you're referring to.

    8 Replies
    1. re: carswell

      Okay, the host just told me it's cannolli. I love cannolli, but what wine do you pair with cannolli?

      I received one recommendation for Moscato d'Asti or Brachetto d'Acqui if having chocolate.

      Anyone else?

      1. re: george2

        I usually pair black coffee with cannoli.

        Sicilian in origin, they're often made with Marsala. A small glass of one of the sweeter versions of that might work. Or maybe one of the rich sweet Muscats made in Sicily and on nearby islands, Moscato di Pantelleria for example.

        Moscato d'Asti is light, frothy and pretty innocuous, which mightn't be a bad thing. Chiarlo's Nivole, which contains some unfermented must along with the wine, is a little less soda poppy and enjoyable in its own right.

        Could you skip the wine with this course and offer to bring a digestivo?

        1. re: carswell

          I wish I could, but the mandate is to not only match a wine to the cannolli, but make the wine pretty special. The upside is that I know the other five couples are doing the same with their course pairings.

          Would a Vin Santo overpower the cannolli?

          1. re: george2

            I totally agree with the recommendation for either a sweeter Marsala or Moscato di Pantelleria. Vin Santo is usually paired with biscotti or Tuscan cantucci, which aren't usually as sweet as cannoli; might make the Vin Santo come off as tasting a little bitter; might want a wine a little sweeter.

            1. re: george2

              I'd worry that the cannoli would blunt the vin santo; the traditional vin santo pairing is biscotti/cantucci, which are dry, minimally sweetened and often nutty.

              Another possibility would be a non-bitter Italian liqueur -- Liquore St. Antonio, limoncello, amaretto, sambuco, Illy's coffee liqueur, maraschino, etc.

              Never having paired cannoli with anything other than coffee, this is all off the top of my head. Others may chime in with more informed opinions by the time the stores open tomorrow.

              1. re: carswell

                I like both Maraschino and Anisette with cannoli, though given my druthers I prefer Anisette with biscotti/cantucci and Maraschino with a mixed fruit salad. This evening we had dinner at our neighborhood Italian restaurant tonight and had Nardini Acqua di Cedro a sweet grappa-based liqueur made from Cedro lemons (the large bumpy lemons) with cannoli. It has a very pure citrus flavor and is crystal clear (quite a departure from Limoncello which usually tastes artificial to me). If worked quite nicely with the candied citron in the cannoli filling. If the OP must have wine Moscato d'Asti would work well enough (though coffee and digestivo would be my first choice).

                1. re: Vinny Barbaresco

                  Woops. Forgot about the Nardini Acqua di Cedro--a masterfully balanced and elegant liqueur that would be terrific with the cannoli. Seek it out.

            2. re: carswell

              Second the moscato passito--we once had incredible cannoli on the Calabrian coast looking at Sicily with a cool/cold glass of homemade zibibbo (moscato) passito from Bagnara. Pellegrino, the Marsala house, makes a good Moscato Passito di Pantelleria not badly priced. A very good espresso also works.

        2. Thanks all for your helpful input. Without it, I would've been googling for hours. I bought Moscato Passito di Pantelleria, which should pair well with the cannolli.

          1 Reply
          1. re: george2

            From which winery?

            I love Passito di Pantelleria.