Chocolate for Retail
Indulging in fine whisky or savouring a piece of craft chocolate can be delightful experiences on their own, but have you ever considered combining these two delectable treats? Whisky and chocolate, when paired thoughtfully, can create a symphony of flavours that tantalise the taste buds and leave a lasting impression. In this blog piece, we explore the art of pairing whisky (or whiskey) and chocolate, and how the harmonious union of these two indulgences can elevate your sensory experience.
Complexity and Nuance
Just like high quality chocolate, fine whisky offers a vast spectrum of flavours to explore. Core flavour groups include malty, peaty, woody, spice, fruity and ‘green’ (floral, herbal, etc), but within those groups there are many different notes and subtleties. The key to a great whisky and chocolate pairing is highlighting and enhancing these incredible worlds of flavour. We want the whole to be greater than the sum of its parts – ie, the chocolate and whisky should beautifully overlap to create an amazing new sensation.
Thankfully, whisky and chocolate pair very well together, so there’s a lot of freedom to explore different combinations, without too much risk of nasty clashes. When you’re starting out, the best way to discover pairings is through trial and error. Start with four different whiskies and eight different chocolate bars, and try a mixture of combinations. You’ll soon get a feel for which combinations taste the best.
There are two main types of pairing – complementary and contrasting. A complementary pairing is where you combine things with the same sort of flavour notes, such as a fruity whisky with a fruity chocolate bar. A contrasting pairing is where you find very different styles that work well together, such as a spicy whisky with orange chocolate.
- Use all your senses. Look at the colours and textures; smell the aromas; listen to the chocolate snap. Then you’re ready to taste.
- Take your time. High quality whisky and chocolate should be savoured slowly. Pay close attention and notice every detail of the flavour journey.
- The high alcohol content of whisky can overpower chocolate. It’s best to add a few drops of water to your whisky, to reduce the powerful alcohol edge and taste more of the delicate notes.
- Generally, it’s best not to put both the whisky and chocolate in your mouth at the same time. Taste the chocolate first, then take a sip of whisky. Notice how the two aftertastes mingle in your mouth, then have another taste of each.
There are many different styles of whisk(e)y and chocolate so there are infinite possibilities for pairing. Here are some tried and tested combinations that we love…
- Peaty Highland scotch with salted caramel chocolate
Suggested bar – Chocolate Tree – Sea Salt & Caramel
- Fruity Speyside scotch with fruity dark-milk chocolate
Suggested bar – Standout Chocolate – India Idukki 60%
- Rye whiskey with citrus dark chocolate
Suggested bar – Taza – Lemon Cookie Crunch
- Kentucky bourbon with nutty chocolate
Suggested bar – Dick Taylor – Hazelnut Milk Chocolate
We hope you enjoy exploring the delicious world of whisky and chocolate pairing. Remember – there’s no right or wrong, only fun! So don’t be afraid to experiment and try lots of combinations. You might even want to host a whisky and chocolate tasting party – it’s a great way to socialise and to introduce friends to amazing new flavours.
If you ever want advice about pairing whisky and chocolate, feel free to get in touch!