The tartness of wine coupled with the sweetness of cake – this is a pairing made in dessert heaven! Like all food and drink pairings, you can experiment with wines and cakes until you find a few pairings according to your preferences. Better yet, you have to be open about new flavor pairings since it’s the stuff of a foodie’s life.
Flourless Chocolate Cake + Fortified Wine
When you pair flourless chocolate cake with fortified wine, you get an explosion of nutty flavors in your mouth. The nutty flavor of the cake enhances the caramel-like flavor of madeira.
Strawberry Shortcake + Sparkling Rosé
Strawberry shortcake has a dense texture complemented by the scrumptious flavors of fresh berries and milky cream. When sparkling rosé is added to the mix, the fruity dance in your mouth will make you moan with pleasure.
Cheesecake + Aromatic Wines
Cheesecakes are dense, rich and creamy treats that can swing from tart to sweet and back again with each bite. Such an indulgent treat is best paired with an aromatic wine, such as a glass of gewürztraminer. The wine’s heavier mouth feel will not be overwhelmed by the cheesecake’s richness – truly, a heavy dessert that makes you feel light-headed with pleasure.
Tres Leches + 2013 Greenhill Seyval Blanc
The vanilla sponge cake is soaked in a milk before being layered in whipped cream and fresh berries, a delightful dessert at any time of the day. Your best bet in pairing is a 2013 Greenhill Seyval Blanc, an off-dry yet fresh, crisp and fruits wine made from French-American hybrid grapes. The berries in tres leches blend so well with the combination of fruity flavors in the wine – mandarin, peach, lychee, apricot and peach with the subtleness of plumeria and almonds.
Carrot Cake + Ice Cider
Carrot cake combines the spiciness of carrots with the richness of cream cheese. Such a combo can be difficult to pair with wines but the ice cider beautifully rises to the occasion. Ice cider is actually made from frozen apples fermented to perfection.
Caramel Apple + 2013 Greenhill Chardonnay
Caramel apple is made from layers of apple spice cake, cinnamon buttercream, and sea salt caramel. The richness of the layers is complemented well by chardonnay, which has flavors of fig, apple and pineapple, as well as light buttery notes coupled with aromas of brioche toast and hazelnut.
Don’t hesitate to ask for the chef’s recommended wine and dessert pairings, especially when in fine dining establishments like the French Laundry.