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Feb 3, 2011 08:41 AM

Wine tasting accompaniments

Hi - I'm having two couples over for a casual wine-tasting. Cheese is covered. It's post-dinner, so nothing too heavy, but I'd like to have a few other things, including something that works as a dessert. Thoughts? What do you serve with wine?

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  1. Buy a frozen cheese cake. Thaw. Scoop spoonfuls of it out and, using your hands, cover a raspberry in it so it makes a ball with the berry inside. Roll in mini-chocolate chips.

    1. I'm finding it strange you are having an "after dinner wine tasting". Are you featuring dessert wines? Why not have it before dinner with apps?

      3 Replies
      1. re: Gail

        What is the point of this post? LOL.

        No, I am not featuring dessert wines. It's casual. We are all very good friends and this is what we all want to do.

        1. re: Raids

          What can I say...I'm from CA. and you know how crazy we are. Charcuterie etc, post dinner seems odd. But you guys enjoy. What wines are you having with dinner?

          1. re: Gail

            We're getting together on a Saturday night at 8pm so I have no idea what everyone is doing for dinner. I will probably just skip it and load up on cheese, etc., or grab a slice of pizza somewhere.

            Basically this is something we're doing in lieu of going out to the bar, because that is very expensive in D.C. and I have a bunch of unopened wine left over from a party last weekened that I spent way too long picking out and someone has to drink it and like it, damn it!

            I honeymooned in Napa - great time, I would love to go back. Wine-tasting at noon felt strange to me out there also, but when in Rome. :-)

        1. re: invinotheresverde

          Malbec, Cotes du Rhone, a very tannic Cabernet and a Pinot from Oregon. Also New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc and Prosecco.

          I would be happy to hear cheese suggestions (particularly for the Sauvignon Blanc and the Malbec), but I think what I'm really asking about are palate cleansers.

          Right now I'm thinking of just adding some grapes and a baugette and making the ricotta & orange cheesecake recipe I just saw around here for a dessert. Someone else is bringing some charcuterie of some kind.

          1. re: Raids

            Raids, I just can't resist helping...Here's the perfect site for you.


            My choice manchego with the malbec and goat cheese (your choice) with the sauv blanc

            1. re: Gail

              Thanks! I will check it out. I would pair a french sauvignon blanc with goat cheese but wasn't really so sure about SB's from New Zealand because that's just an awful lot of tanginess.

              Nobody likes sheep's milk cheese but me (and I *love* it), so I'm in a bit of a bind there.

            2. re: Raids

              I've said it before and I'll say it again, but IMO, red table wine and cheese is a horrendous match. I don't know how the old "red wine with cheese" thing became so popular, but with very, very few exceptions, the outcome equals less than the sum of its parts. Cheese belongs with whites, bubbles, fortified and stickies.

              Dessert is also tough, as the wine needs to be at least equally sweet to the dessert or it's going to taste foul.

              Are you doing a wine tasting, or just an informal thing where there are a bunch of wines open? If it's the former, I would serve no food; the latter is tough, since you'll all have already eaten.

              Sorry if this isn't particularly helpful.

              1. re: invinotheresverde

                Nah, I agree. I do think there's something to be said for pairing a tannic red with a fatty cheese, but that's about it. But, it is what it is. And it's informal. I did pick up a northern Italian Chardonnay from a store tasting yesterday that's nicely crisp and effervescent and I am looking forward to pairing that. :-)

                I think I'm going to pick up some olives, a baguette, some dried fruit, some nuts (walnuts included - thanks sacan!) and whatever fresh fruit looks good at Whole Foods tomorrow. For "dessert," I'm thinking we'll just finish off the whole wine tasting thing and have some hot toddies.

              2. re: Raids

                I think nuts are a good palate cleanser, particularly walnuts.

            3. I'm not sure what dessert you could pair with those wines other than cheese which you've already mentioned. People say chocolate and red wine but I'm yet to be convinced.