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19 Feb '13

Chocolate & Coffee Pairings

Posted by Susan Fine

One of our favorite things to do is to pair chocolate with other fabulous things.  We are going to be part of Montclair (NJ)'s Food and Wine Festival in June 2013 and preparations are well underway.  We are going to be working with Jodi and Kristine from Java Love Coffee and pair 3 chocolates with 3 coffees.  We have spent a few cold, wintery mornings warming and enjoying ourselves by trying out different chocolates and coffees.  We tried truffles, origin bars and cocoa beans with coffees from around the world.  There were some very interesting results.  We ultimately decided on pairing 2 true origins together - we will pair a coffee with beans from Papua New Guinea with a bar made with beans from the same.  We will then pair roasted cocoa beans coated in layers of chocolate from Costa Rica with coffee beans from Costa Rica.  These two combinations were fabulous right from the start, with the coffees enhancing the subtle undertones of the chocolates.  The third pairing was a bit more difficult, but really fun and fascinating.  Java Love has these amazing coffees from Ethiopia, some very strong and intense and one that has a wonderful medium roast and medium body.  We tried a few different chocolates that were not quite right, but when we paired the medium roast with a classic truffle - WOW!   After finalizing our pairings, we then spent another morning presenting our pairings to Melody Kettle, the festival's director.  Yet another cold, dreary, winter morning spent drinking hot, aromatic coffees, tasting fabulous chocolates.    To find out what the final pairings are, you will have to come to the Montclair Food and Wine Festival on Saturday, June 2nd.  Now I'm off to prepare for a private chocolate and wine tasting on Thursday night at Montclair wine merchant Amanti Vino.