Ask A Sommelier: Wine and Cookies
My name is Eric Chevalier, and I’ve been working with the SAQ (Société des alcools du Québec) for six years now. I completed the WSET (Wine and Spirit Education Trust) training programs II and III at the ITHQ (Institut de tourisme et d’hôtellerie du Québec - Quebec’s top culinary and hospitality institute). Altogether, I’ve been a wine and spirits enthusiast for about 15 years.
I’ve never had the chance to pair cookies with wine before, but after thinking about it, they’re truly perfect for one another. Cookies make you feel good, and so does wine, so why not pair them up? The key for me was to find sweet-tasting wines to play on the natural sweetness of delicious Félix & Norton cookies. I’ve put together two pairings for each type of ready-to-bake Félix & Norton cookie - you can even find them at your local IGA or Metro right now!
Dark Chocolate Chunk
One classic deserves another, and that’s why we’ll start by pairing our Dark Chocolate Chunk cookie with a Port wine whose reputation has also stood the test of time. With aromas of cocoa, plum and spice, Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage (approx. $21.80) will highlight the chunks of dark chocolate in this cookie exceptionally well.
New World wines, like cabernet sauvignon and merlot, are the preferred red for pairing with sweet treats. After all, the North American climate typically yields wines with ample and silky tannins. That being said, my second choice here is going to be the Sebastiani Sonoma-County Cabernet Sauvignon (approx. $23.95). Its woodsy bouquet of vanilla, with hints of dark fruit jam, will really make the flavours of this cookie sing with delight.
Milk Chocolate Chunk
Félix & Norton was born in Montreal, so it only made sense to suggest a local pairing for this cookie. Domaine De Lavoie (approx. $24.05) is a still cider with an aroma of caramelized apple and honey. Pair them up and it will make you feel like you’re enjoying a freshly baked chocolate-apple crumble! Don’t forget to serve slightly chilled (under 10°C).
A semi-dry white would also work wonderfully with this cookie. Domaine des Aubuisières Cuvée Silex 2015 (approx. $19.90) might be a bit on the acidic side, but the floral notes of honey make it the perfect match for the smooth milk chocolate in this cookie.
Ebony and Ivory
Thanks to the happy marriage of bitter dark and silky sweet white chocolate, this cookie really stands out. The intricate balance of opposing flavours immediately reminds me of Harveys Bristol Cream (approx. $14.90). This cream sherry’s nose of roasted almonds and caramel, as well as its buttery texture, makes it the ideal partner for an equally as smooth cookie.
Our second pairing takes us to the land down under for The Footbolt Shiraz (approx. $21.95). This Australian red’s tannins are smooth, so they blend well with the bitter elements of the dark chocolate, while highlighting the white chocolate. Overall, with a nose of dark fruit and vanilla, this red is basically an Ebony and Ivory cookie in a glass.
Ménage à trois
The first wine I paired with Ménage à trois is of the Tokaji Aszu type. Le Chateau Imperial Tokaj 3 Puttonyos Tokaji (approx. $26.75), with aromas of apricot cream, caramelized sugar and peach that will offer you a both exciting and enticing experience - not unlike a Ménage à trois! Puttonyos is the six-tier scale used to measure sugar levels in Tokaji Aszu wines. Make sure to mention this during your next date, for both instant wine-snob credibility and even a second date.
This last suggestion is going to be another wine from la Belle Province, Coteau Rougemont Frontenac Gris Vendange Tardive (approx. $23.40). Best when served between 5°C-10°C, this wine is brimming with a sumptuous texture and notes of candied citrus which will harmonize perfectly with this decadent chocolate trio.
When it comes to pairing wine with cookies, there are so many possibilities. Don’t be afraid to try your own and have fun with some of your favourites. All you have to do is ensure that the next time you share a batch of Félix & Norton cookies, that there is always a glass of vino closeby!