Holy deliciousness Batman, that’s freshly baked cookie! If you have a fire going you’re two for two. Now all you need is some sweet wine and your sweetie and you can curl up for a grand slam afternoon! Seriously folks, this is what makes life special. This is a whole article of smiles, so check out some of my favorite cookies and the wines that love them!
Photo courtesy KaiChanVong via Flickr/CC
Port and Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Port is probably the best known dessert wine with its deep fruit and hints of chocolate and spice. At 20% alcohol, it’s perfect for warming you up after a long day outdoors.
It takes a pretty assertive cookie to stand up to the richness of Port, and for this pairing I’m thinking of a nice Late Bottled Vintage Port which has lots of youthful fruit in a rather edgy style. The oatmeal in these cookies helps round out the edges while the raisins serve as a flavor bridge between the port and cookie. And as for the white chocolate, well it certainly helps draw the fruit out of the wine and is so delicious that I figure why not just go for it!
Try Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage Port
Tokaji and Peanut Butter Cookies
Tokaji is one of my favorite dessert wines. The flavors tend to the orange and apricot marmalade end of the spectrum with nice earthy spice notes and pretty wicked acidity. At first it was tough to figure out what to pair a good Tokaji with, but then it hit me: try peanut butter cookies!
Most peanut butter cookies are rather simple, they taste like peanut butter and roastedness. This recipe features the addition of butterscotch bits, which happens to work with my favorite Tokaji wines since they tend to have a little oxidative edge. Another flavor bridge! Besides, peanut butter and Tokaji are two of my favorite things and I will not be denied!
Try: Royal Tokaji Wine Company 5 Puttonyos
Banyuls and Chocolate Chip Cookies
Believe it or not, this is a classic pairing. Okay, so not exactly this pairing, but if you do any research about Banyuls that includes drinking some, you’ll find out that this sweet wine, made from Grenache in the south west of France, is a chocolate lover’s dream. Let me rephrase that, it is chocolate’s dream!
I don’t know exactly why it works so well, but Banyuls seems to be a natural match for chocolate, yielding a pairing that is balanced and that lets the fruit and the wine compliment the richness of the chocolate without either obscuring any detail of the other. A match made in heaven, and since I’m choosing, heaven is made of large, thick, chewy, gooey chocolate chip cookies!
Try: Domaine de la Vieille Banyuls
Sauternes and Coconut Macadamia Cookies
Sauternes and Barsac tends to be a rather elegant wine, rich with apricot and tropical fruit and accent notes of honey, coconut, vanilla and spice. That sounds delicious, and also sounds like it might be difficult to pair with cookies. But it isn’t at all, you just need to think outside of the box a little.
This recipe features many of the flavors you might find in Sauternes, and the white chocolate adds a velvety richness that helps marry the wine to the cookie. I like the oats in here as well, adding a bit of density and heft to the cookie. The only thing that could make this pairing better is if you drizzled some salted caramel over these cookies. Time to get baking!
Try: Chateau Doisy-Vedrines Barsac
Moscato and Shortbread Cookies
Moscato is one hot wine these days, and while you might serve it chilled, that doesn’t mean you should cross it off your winter consumption list. In fact, good Italian Moscato is always a make-me-happy wine, and in the winter time simple treats like sugar cookies and shortbread cookies can make for a lovely dessert or enchanting snack while the fire is blazing.
Of course, if you want to jazz things up a bit you can get fancy with your spices, like someone has done with these delicious Orange Hazelnut Shortbread Cookies. Delicately but decisively flavored, these cookies mirror some of the subtle flavors that you might find in Moscato, making for an ideal complementary pairing.
Try: Bera Moscato d’Asti
PX sherry and Gingerbread Cookies
PX, or Pedro Ximenez Sherry, is the pinnacle of sweet sherry. Deep and thick, these are wines that truly coat the palate with intense flavors of dried fruit, caramel and chocolate. There’s not much that you can put up against a PX and expect to survive. What you need is some spice!
Gingerbread cookies are often thought of as a nice base for tiny houses and jolly fellows whose arms are particularly tasty. The truth is, a good Ginger Snap will slap the happy right out of you if you’re not careful. These spicy cookies need a dance partner, and opulent, prodigious PX Sherry is the perfect match to parry Ginger Snap’s spicy advances.
Try: Toro Albala Don PX Gran Reserva Montilla Moriles (yes, I know it’s not technically Sherry, but it is great PX!)
Vin Santo and Almond Biscotti
Now this is a classic. I don’t care where you’re getting your Santo: Tuscany, Santorini, Trentino, it’s all good! Just keep in mind that dipping your cookie in really good Vin Santo might not be the best use for it, but it will taste delicious.
These Orange-Infused Cherry Almond Biscotti are the perfect way to soak up simpler Vin Santo, just keep in mind that you are drinking dessert WINE, so don’t get carried away with the dipping. If you do, you’ll end with no more biscotti and a sugar high destined to crash like the Sands on the Las Vegas strip, and we all know how that turned out!
Want to Learn More?
Try out some savory meal pairing ideas in Pairing Syrah from Around the World!