Valentine’s Day is creeping up on us! Still considering what to do for your sweetie? The most obvious choice is chocolate with our wine. Port and chocolate is a classic combo, but you don’t want to gift your honey with just any port or chocolate. Treat them right: Canyon Wind Cellars Proprietor’s Reserve Port paired with Death by Chocolate Cupcakes (using a delectable recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction, an awesome baking blog with reliable recipes).
I had you at chocolate, right? Trust me, this is a great combo and our winemakers Jay and Jen (both foodies) approve. These are some serious chocolate cupcakes—dark and bittersweet; and they are well balanced by the sweetness of the Proprietor’s Reserve Port with its cherry, fig, and coffee flavors. Use high quality cocoa powder for this recipe (I prefer Ghirardelli). I choose to top the cupcakes with mini chocolate chips or chocolate shavings, rather than the full-size chocolate chips shown in the recipe. Aerate your flour before measuring and don’t be tempted to add extra cocoa powder, otherwise you may end up with dry cupcakes. I added a little more cream to the frosting than what the recipe calls for to get a smoother texture. And if you want a cupcake for breakfast, I won’t judge—they go well with coffee, too!
A couple of other lovely ideas for Valentine’s Day gifts:
- 2012 Lips, because it is bold and classy like you, it has a lip print on the bottle, and it’s hand-dipped in red wax with love
- 2013 47-Ten Rosé, because it’s pink and sassy, which reminds you of your dearest when they get too cold this winter
- A Wine Club membership, for the Valentine’s gift that proves you’re not afraid of commitment. We have three clubs to choose from, and we promise to make your Valentine feel special.
- A beautifully prepared gift basket with Port or Lips and chocolate, a heart-themed bow, and a discounted package price—ready for you in our tasting room in lovely Palisade (call ahead for availability)
May you have a love-filled, chocolate-infused, wine-fueled Valentine’s Day. Cheers!
~Stacey Smith, Canyon Wind Cellars Sensory Tour Guide