Wine Talk

Snooth User: jamessulis

Making bad wine taste good

Posted by jamessulis, May 8.

The other night I opened a bottle of Garnacha and to say the least it wasn't good at all.  I ambled into the kitchen seeking a small snack. I found some Australian Licorice. I ate one piece and took another sip of wine, viola' the wine was now very acceptable to drink. I also had a small dish of chocolate pudding with chocolate chips on top. Took another sip of wine and now I had a great taste. Wine with hints of licorice and chocolate. Don't throw it down the drain, improve it with innovative ideas. Yes I understand pairing with food but this actually didn't go with the wine, it improved it.!

 

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Replies

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Reply by EMark, May 8.

Good job, lefty.  Interestingly enough I really enjoy Zinfandel (good or mediocre) with chocolate chip cookies.  I've read (here on the Forum, I think) that some people do not understand the mating of red wine and chocolate.  OK.

I've never heard of "Australian Licorice."  Is it different from any other licorice I have ever had?

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Reply by outthere, May 8.

They do theirs in a spiral and cut it into bite sized pieces. I wonder how they keep it from falling out of the package?

 

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Reply by dvogler, May 8.

OH GOD!?  Who doesn't 'get' red wine and chocolate?  It's as right as red wine in the bath with good jazz.

BTW OT: It's good mental exercise to view pictures out of "normal"...it forces parts of your brain to fire up. 

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Reply by outthere, May 8.

Yeah, my brain has been burning lately ;)

 

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Reply by napagirl68, May 8.

Sorry, I don't like wine with chocolate..  for me, it makes both taste bitter.  Just my personal palate...

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Reply by dmcker, May 8.

I'm with NG. Both members of the combination end up suffering. Badly.

Would be interesting if we could know how our individual bodies' chemistries were different enough so as to account for these different tasting sensations....

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Reply by jamessulis, May 9.

@ EMARK, yes, Australian Licorice is like OUTTHERE shows in his posted picture. It's usually softer and not so leathery. It's great stuff and I believe it's sold in most stores who have a candy variety.

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Reply by gregt, May 9.

Yeah. Wine and chocolate is normally the worst pairing, at least chocolate in a bar form. The fat and tannins in the chocolate and the acidity of the wine just don't work. Oxidized wines like tawny ports and oloroso sherries and sweet Madeira however, are different animals and sometimes work really well.

Lefty -  you said "Yes I understand pairing with food but this actually didn't go with the wine, it improved it.!"

That is the whole point of pairing! You want it to improve both sides. If not, then it doesn't matter what you drink with your food. You hit on something pretty funny but sometimes those are the best combos. A lot of times I used to eat roasted peanuts with really fruity Australian wines because it reminded me of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

I gotta say though, I never thought of chocolate pudding!  Good job!

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Reply by jamessulis, May 9.

@GREGT, I just have to say, I saved a marginal bottle of wine and had a connection with a wine that I converted to my palate. What's more, it was entirely an accident.

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Reply by jamessulis, May 9.

For EMARK,

Some of the finest Australian Licorice is shown here in my post. It's damn yummy ! They of course have different flavors but the traditional black licorice is the best Kooka Burra is the name and sold in many retail stores that have candy selections.

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Reply by napagirl68, May 9.

Can I still call you Lefty, James?  ;-)

Thank you for that lead to Australian Licorice...   I need to try some :-)

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Reply by jamessulis, May 10.

@NAPAGIRL......................why of course you can ;-)

 

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Reply by Richard Foxall, May 10.

I agree that most of the time wine and chocolate in bar form don't make the best combination.  But that's because I usually bust out the bourbon for dessert.

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Reply by gregt, May 10.

Bourbon is generally better with the bar form but Lefty had it with pudding! It never would have occurred to me to try that.

Now I'm wondering what it would be like if I did a kind of chocolate sabayon. Lefty might have hit on something that needs further exporation.

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Reply by dmcker, May 10.

You've never had liquor with chocolate 'pudding', Greg?  One of my family's sacred desserts is chocolate mousse, usually made with Grand Marnier, but Calvados, grappa, marc, Cognac, Armagnac and even Bourbon have all made it in as substitutes from time to time.

Sorry, but no red wine need apply for a match. Unless maaaaaaaybe Bandol.  ;-)

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Reply by dmcker, May 10.

"Making bad wine taste good"

 

Back to the OP, I'll quote a learned source on the subject:

'put it in spaghetti sauce!'.

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Reply by EMark, May 10.

I would be happy to be a judge on the chocolate sabayon test, Greg.  I would come with bias, but I would also com with red wine--probably Zinfandel.

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Reply by napagirl68, May 10.

OMG, Greg, chocolate sabayon...  ummmmmmm... sighhhhh...   Sounds fantastic!!!

 

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Reply by gregt, May 10.

I wonder how I would do it. I never made it with chocolate, always just plain. I guess do the sabayon and then gently fold in some melted chocolate. Kind of like chocolate mousse but more delicate.

I get the mousse with Grand Marnier and all of the others actually - spirits and chocolate are a natural match. But wine is harder? That Zin or a Garnacha or anything really super fruity and non-oaky would be my choice.

By complete coincidence I had this pairing today. I was at a little shop and a Napa winemaker was visiting and showing her wines. Two Cabs. I had a bit and wandered across the street to a chocolate shop and she gave me a truffle and a piece of chocolate cheesecake. It was quite delicious but completely overwhelmed the wine. Anyhow, I'd do some experiments with the sabayon tonight, but I'm completely chocolated out.

Next few days though. I'll report on what happens. Emark - Zin sounds like a plan.

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Reply by dmcker, May 10.

Square pegs and round holes. Then there's Einstein's quote...  ;-)

 

OK, enough snarkiness on my part, too.

 

I still would like to see some mappings of the physiological/biological factors and processes that make some of us able to appreciate chocolate and dry wed wine, while to others it's not pleasant at all.

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