Friday, January 14, 2011

ChocoVine…what is up with all the Chocolate (a Review)

I don’t know what it is about this time of year….but it always seems the unusual stuff comes out, and the theme so far this early in the year is Chocolate.

Much like the “Adult Chocolate Milk”, I stumbled ChocoVine in the store….this time Sam’s Club in CoMO.  Presentation is pretty simple, Tulips and a Windmill conjure a thought of Amsterdam and Dutch Chocolate, and at $13.99 a bottle, I thought I could give it a try.

At first pour, I thought….here we go again with another cheap Baily’s knock off, as the color and consistency were exactly the same as Baily’s and Adult Chocolate Milk. 

I chose the option (per the website) to drink on the rocks….and again, I was thinking Baily’s.

But as I tasted, I realized this was something better. 

Whereas Baily’s is an Irish Liqueur and cream base, with a chocolate taste…..ChocoVine appears to have a Chocolate base.  Why is this different?   First, mouth feel.  Totally different, holding well together in the mouth like a syrup instead of just a mouthful of liquid.  The taste is unique, as they have paired the chocolate flavor with a (French) Cabernet.  A natural pairing when separate, the subtle wine flavors are blended well and there is just a hint of dry aftertaste on the palette.  The wine is not overbearing, and if you surprised someone with this…I doubt they would realize it was a wine.

The nose is like a fine cup of hot chocolate, and this could easily be added to give the drink and extra kick without tipping people off that you are taking a nip Winking smile

I’m not sure how I feel about wine cocktails, but this is a great stand alone drink and one that I would not be ashamed to serve at any time.  At 14% ABV, it’s on par with most wines and a little lighter than Bailey’s 17%.  This drink isn't for a bender….but for sitting and relaxing.  If it wasn’t so damn cold out, I bet it would pair with a cigar quite nicely.

I know some of my friends are reading Beat to Quarters as part of a book club, and there is a scene where El Supremo offers Hot Chocolate.  I know that recipes have differed over the year (it is much different today than what the drink was 200 years ago when it was a drink reserved for kings, and I found this immediately jumping to mind as a substitute that us mere mortals could try.

They currently have two other variants, Espresso and Raspberry….but boy I would love to try this infused with a little red chili.  The extra zing would take this drink over the top.

If you are looking for something different, give ChocoVine a try.  If you don’t like it, call me and I’ll drink the rest.

I give this 3.5 out 5 stars.

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