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If, like me, you tend to find yourself on websites devoted to food and wine, you might have noticed a new trend popping up for the winter months: red wine hot chocolate.
Yes, you read that correctly. Red wine and hot chocolate, together! What could be better, right??
To be honest, I’m a little skeptical. A lot skeptical actually. I love wine, and I also enjoy the occasional cup of hot chocolate (I refuse to call it ‘ho-cho’), but I just can’t see the two working together. In the words of one of the commenters weighing in on this idea, “This sounds revolting!”. Coconutlime, I think I agree with you.
However, a friend tweeted me about this odd concoction recently so I thought – what the hell? This is why I have a blog, right? To push myself and try new things? So here I go, trying this disgusting-looking thing. For YOU, dear reader. I hope you enjoy.
The recipe I used is from one of my favourite sites, The Kitchn. I love everything they do and so even if I don’t like what this recipe makes I know I can trust that the recipe itself will be a good one.
Red Wine Hot Chocolate
5 ounces dark chocolate, finely chopped
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 quart (4 cups) whole milk
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups fruity red wine, such as Merlot, Shiraz, or Zinfandel
Cinnamon sticks and additional cocoa powder, for serving (optional)
Whisk the chocolate, cocoa powder, sugar, and cinnamon together in a large saucepan. Add the milk and bring to a simmer over medium heat, whisking occasionally, until hot and smooth, about 5 minutes. Stir in the salt.
Remove from the heat and add the wine. Divide among 8 small glasses or mugs, garnish with a cinnamon stick and a dusting of cocoa powder, if desired, and serve.
*since it was just my roommate and I partaking in this experiment I cut the recipe in half
The Key Ingredient – Wine!
I used a Merlot from Spier winery in South Africa for this recipe. As an aside, I brought this wine to a friend’s place for New Year’s Eve and we all thought this was decent wine. If you’re looking for a new inexpensive go-to Merlot I would recommend this one. It’s not the most glorious or exciting wine, but at this price I wouldn’t expect that.
So How Was It?
You know, I really wanted to hate it. The idea of it just doesn’t make sense! It’s a classic case of sweet and savoury making my brain hurt.
But here’s the thing. I like hot chocolate, and I like wine. So in the end I didn’t hate this. Sure, it tasted a bit weird. It was hot chocolate on the palate and wine on the finish and it took a few sips to get used to that. In the end, I have to admit I kinda liked it. I’m not sure it’ll become a winter staple like my beloved mulled wine, but I definitely enjoyed the mug I had. I’m surprised, I really thought I was going to hate it.
If you’re open to weird sweet and savoury things then I say go for it and give this a try – get down with your bad, wine-trend enjoying self!
- My roommate didn’t like it much. She made a lot of faces while drinking it, and really tried to like it, but about five sips before she tapped out, making it clear that this drink isn’t for her.
- The hot chocolate before adding the wine smelled AMAZING.
- The Kitchn recipes really are great. I might make this again just for the hot chocolate part.
- As it cooled down the flavours melded a bit more. Good to know if I ever make this again.
- It has the same kind of alcoholic heat on the finish that mulled wine and hot toddies have.
Have you indulged in any wine trends lately?