The Herald Bulletin

Overnight Update

Columns

February 23, 2013

Howard Hewitt: More than meets the eye with wine and chocolate

The world is awash in boutique wine, craft beers, herbs and spices galore. Some call it the Food Network effect. One of wine’s best friends, chocolate, has evolved with a similar Renaissance.

“I think over the past 15 years there has been an evolution of foods, in general, and specialty foods,” said Indianapolis chocolatier Elizabeth Garber. “It has happened to cheese, with craft beer, and even wine. Chocolate has done that too.

“Chocolate has been around for ever and ever, but then you started getting people specializing in the craft of chocolate and the higher quality and the artistic side of chocolate. People started creating it more visually and it became more about the palate. Now it’s what flavor profile is in the chocolate and what works well with chocolate. Today you can find spices and things like that in chocolate products.”

Wine and chocolate have been a natural pairing for a long, long time but it’s not as simple as grabbing a bottle or wine and a chocolate bar. There are far too many options not to explore the possibilities.

“There are levels and strengths in terms of sweetness,” Garber said. “A white chocolate is going to be sweeter because it has a lot more sugar in it.  There are some grades of milk chocolate that sweetness depends on the amount of sugar, milk and cacao in the chocolate. Then you get in to darks which are going to get more bittersweet, though you can have really sweet dark chocolate too.

The higher the percentage of cacao you have on a bar means more cacao and less sugar. Garber explains the 80 percent you see on a chocolate bar means 80 percent cacao and 20 percent sugar, cacao butter and other stuff.”

And simply enough the more bold the chocolate, the bigger red wine you’re going to want to pair with the sweet treat. Chocolate ranging from 60-75 percent cacao pairs great with big red wines. Any bold red wine will do but experimenting will help you find your favorites.

But chocolate today is more than a plain chocolate bar. “We do a cinnamon basil and it might go well with one thing versus another,” Garber said. “A milk chocolate could be paired with a Chardonnay or whites. Sometime that sweet white wine with a honey/lavender truffle is a great pairing. A sweet floral chocolate might pair better with white than just a red. So many people just think red wine with chocolate but you can mix it up.”

Garber has been a chocolatier since 1994. She started in her home and then opened a business just south of Indianapolis. She now has a sizable shop in Indianapolis’ trendy Mass Ave. district called “The Best Chocolate in Town.”

She mixes all sorts of spices, fruit, and even beer in her truffles to challenge her customer’s base palate. “There has been this slow evolution going on,” she said. “It’s sort of like jams and jelly; it used to be just grape and strawberry. Now you have pepper jellies and all sorts of combinations. So now chocolate has evolved and continues to expand in new directions.

Flavored truffles give wine fans a chance to really experiment. Boutique chocolate shops have popped up in cities of all size.

Howard’s Pick: Try a 70 percent Cacao Truffle with hints of coffee with a big fruity Zinfandel Delightful!

Howard W. Hewitt, Crawfordsville, Ind., writes every other week for 22 newspapers in three states. Reach him at: hewitthoward@gmail.com.

1
Text Only
Columns
  • Clark, Big Joe mug [Duplicate] 'Big Joe' Clark: Plan your strategy for financing higher education Planning is essential regardless of the situation, but no plan is perfect. There will be flat tires and snow days, but there will also be dances and great memories. Let’s plan for what we can even if we know it won’t be perfect.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Davis, Verna mug Verna Davis: Peace is worth fighting for Some people say they know how to find peace. We should “simply” follow our hearts, search for meaning in our lives, and fulfill our dreams. Sad to say, those things may bring us a bit of satisfaction, but they certainly don’t bring us peace.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jim Bailey: Gospel singer’s long road to recovery has begun Eighteen months ago, gospel singer and The Perrys manager Tracy Stuffle found himself wrecked by the side of the road, where he struggled to summon help on his cell phone. He had suffered a severe stroke while driving.

    July 30, 2014

  • OPN - Mootry column mug [Duplicate] [Duplicate] Primus Mootry: The African-American community toward a new narrative African Americans are entirely unique in the annals of American history and, perhaps, the whole history of mankind. This uniqueness demands an African American agenda and, with it, a new narrative, or way of articulating that agenda.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • underwood mug [Duplicate] [Duplicate] Scott Underwood: Headlines can capture imagination I'd just left the newspaper office one morning and was driving north on Jackson Street, when I stopped at a red light and glanced at the rearview mirror.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Charo Boyd: 'My Social Security' simplifies your life So many people buzz through extremely busy and complicated schedules these days. A smartphone in one hand, a computer in front of you, and a digital task list that never seems to end. In addition, to complicate things just a little more, there’s another event you need to add to your list — National Simplify Your Life week.

    July 28, 2014

  • Maureen Hayden: 9/11 Commission chair scolds Congress for national security failures Retired Congressman Lee Hamilton has warned of the perils of political ideology, calling the body where he spent 34 years “noxiously partisan.” Now, he worries the divide is downright dangerous.

    July 27, 2014

  • Vaughan, Nancy mug [Duplicate] Nancy Vaughan: Fireworks and fireflies mean summer in full swing Hasn't July been a fabulous month? It began with multiple fireworks venues and parades and ends with fairs and football in full swing. We have been blessed with mild weather and if you haven't had to travel much outside of the county, roadwork has been minimal.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ken de la Bastide: City unions go without contracts for many years How Anderson deals with unions has changed dramatically over the years. In the past it would have been unheard of for union members to continue to work without a contract or an agreed upon deadline. But members of three unions that represent Anderson city employees have been working without a new contract agreement for up to seven years.

    July 26, 2014

  • Jim Bailey: Traveling by passenger train was a page from the past My wife doesn’t remember riding on a full-fledged passenger train as a baby. Our children have never ridden. It’s an experience rapidly going the way of the horse and buggy and the stagecoach throughout a nation now obsessed with jumbo jets and sport-utility vehicles.

    July 26, 2014

Featured Ads
More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
AP Video
Renewed Violence Taking Toll on Gaza Residents 2 Americans Detained in North Korea Seek Help US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Tunisia Closes Borders With Libya Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Helium debate
Helium
Front page
Poll

How many Dan Patch races have you attended?

None
1-2
3 or more
All 20
     View Results