Sparkling wine pairings are some of my favorite things to do here at Bubbly Side of Life. When it comes to pairing sparkling wine, I typically think in general, it’s easier because in my world everything is better with bubbles.
Sparkling Wine Pairings
And as a general rule, sparkling wine pairings are easier especially when it comes to savory foods. You’ve heard of the famous champagne and French fry pairings or champagne and fried chicken.
And the reason sparkling wine paired with fried foods is so delicious and easy to create is because the salt helps balance out the acidity of the bubbly. It helps cut through that tang just a bit making you crave more of both the sparkling wine and the fried food.
Dessert and Sparkling Wine Pairing
You might be thinking right now that creating desserts and sparkling wine pairings would be impossible unless you were deep frying desserts like at those good old midwest state fairs. But that’s not true. You just need to follow one simple rule to create the perfect dessert and sparkling wine pairing.
Here is the one key you need to create the most delicious dessert and sparkling wine pairing ever: Your bubbly must be sweeter than your dessert.
And if you follow Bubbly Side of Life on Instagram and watch all the fun bubbly cocktails we create, you know that I don’t like anything sweet. Sweet drinks are not my thing at all. But if you pair a dessert with a sparkling wine that is not sweeter than your dessert, the bubbly will taste horrible.
Food has the bigger impact here on the end result. The result will likely be negative when paired incorrectly and you truly won’t be able to enjoy or experience the potential of that bottle of wine.
So how can you be sure that you’re selecting a bottle of bubbly that is sweeter than your dessert?
Sparkling Wine Sweetness Levels
I know exactly how confusing it can be trying to choose a bottle of wine, let alone a bottle of sparkling wine perfect for any sparkling wine pairings. Those labels can be very confusing which is why we break it down for you and encourage you to screenshot this image when you’re staring down the bottles in the liquor store.
For me, when I am selecting a bottle of sparkling wine for a particular dessert pairing, I am buying something I wouldn’t typically purchase because I don’t like sweet bubbly as a general rule.
So you for your dessert and sparkling wine pairings you will be leaning toward the dry, extra dry, sweet, demi sec, doux side of the scale. And I don’t know if it’s the particular liquor stores that I frequent in Illinois, but it seems that most of the proseccos I grab fall into this side of the scale.
If you know your dessert is super sweet, gravitate as far to the right of that scale as you can. If your dessert is less sweet, you can easily get away with a dry or extra dry bubbly. Let’s take a look at some specific examples.
Sparkling Wine and Chocolate Pairing
Wine and chocolate is a classic pairing, right? Not many are trying to pull off a sparkling wine and chocolate pairing though.
I had in my head that I wanted my sister to make her infamous chocolate cake and I wanted to pair it with a sparkling red wine. Now a sparkling red is hard to come by and I wasn’t sure just how hard it was going to be to find a sparkling sweet red wine.
I happened to be in Galena, IL with one of my girlfriends wandering past a small wine shop, so I decided to pop in. And I very clearly remember asking the question exactly like this, “I know this is a strange request, and I do have a reason, but do you happen to have a sweet sparkling red wine.” And low and behold she was actually pouring it as a sample and it was open right there in her ice bucket!
Talk about serendipity. I tasted that sweet red bubbly and oh boy was it sweet! It had notes of raspberries and I knew it was perfect for the sparkling wine and chocolate cake pairing I wanted to do.
And it was delicious. I, of course, poured glasses of the sparkling red wine and made everyone try it by itself. It was definitely no one’s favorite glass of bubbly, that’s for sure. And then taking a sip of that bubbly and a bite of that delicious chocolate cake, it was absolute perfection.
This sparkling wine and chocolate pairing was so good because there were multiple layers to that chocolate cake so the super sweet red wine with hints of bright red fruit really brought out the flavors of both the wine and food.
If you’re looking to create a sparkling wine and chocolate pairing for the holidays, see if you can find this bottle of bubbly. You won’t regret it.
Another Dessert and Sparkling Wine Pairing Idea
I had this bottle of Adelsheim Demi-Sec Cuvée Sparkling Wine sitting around, so I knew I needed to pair it with a dessert and I had the best idea. With notes of butterscotch in this bubbly, I wanted to pair this with a pound cake.
And since it’s the holiday season, I decided to make a little adaptation to the pound cake recipe and create an egg nog pound cake. And seriously what a perfect pairing with this demi-sec sparkling wine out of the Willamette Valley.
Now since this pound cake is less sweet than the multilayered chocolate cake, I had a bit more wiggle room on choosing a bottle of bubbly. Since I had already tried this bubbly and was surprised at how much I enjoyed it even though it was on the sweeter side, I knew it was the perfect compliment to this delicious egg nog pound cake.
More Sparkling Wine Pairings
Now, you’re armed with the one key piece of knowledge to create the perfect sparkling wine and dessert pairings for your holidays.