In this recurring feature, members of the Court of Master Sommeliers, an international association of wine experts, suggest pairings for popular menu items. The sommeliers do not have a financial interest in any of their recommendations.
Here, Andrew McNamara, director of fine wine at Miramar, Fla.-based Premier Beverage Company, selects a bargain and premium wine to pair with desserts.
Grape variety: Brachetto
Taste profile: Black fruit, mulling spices and dark raspberry are the hallmarks of this outstanding example of the lightly sparkling red wine from Piedmont.
Pairings: Slightly sweet on the palate, this is one of the best dessert wines I’ve ever come across. It pairs well with compotes, pure berry-based desserts and chocolate.
Average wholesale case price: $250
Grape varieties: 90 percent Malbec, 10 percent Bonarda
Taste profile: Bright, juicy and fruit-dominant with a core of mocha and spice.
Pairings: Perfect on its own, with anything meaty or gamy, or with dark berry desserts.
Average wholesale case price: $110