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3 Dessert Wine Pairings

The 'other guys' of wine are ready to be served with your favourite recipes from the Duchess Bakery.

The California condor has nothing on dessert wines when it comes to feeling endangered. The expected stalwarts—port, Sauterne, icewine—are better than ever, while at the same time presiding over a declining interest in their category. But dessert wine doesn’t have to be the vinous equivalent of buying your Uncle Gord’s Oldsmobile 88—you just need to source out some of the more esoteric but equally rewarding alternatives. And they go great with the Duchess’s wares.

Sherry
Thankfully the Scotch industry needs sherry barrels, or this wine might disappear. While fino sherries are the epitome of bracing acidity, a bottle of oloroso like Gonzalez Byass Nutty Solera ($18) is all caramel and roasted almonds and orange peel. An amazing value.

Vin Santo
Tuscany’s entry into the game can range from bone-dry to cloyingly sweet. Ruffino’s Vin Santo Serelle ($27) is made in the dry style, with grapes grown in Chianti, and has waves of dried, honeyed apricot and nut-crusted pineapple. Pairs perfectly with biscotti and the like.

Banyuls
This fortified red wine from Languedoc is not very well known outside of France, but is often cited as the perfect match for dark chocolate. The 2012 Chapoutier Banyuls ($35) channels classic stewed blackberries with little attendant cloying sweetness that works well with cacao.

 

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