Although today marks the last day of chocolate month, you can let chocolate live all year long by posting one of these arty prints on your walls. I've gone through a substantial collection and picked out some of the best ones. I think you'll find something suitable for every taste. To check them out, click "Start Slideshow" below.
Keep things clean and simple at your wine and chocolate tasting. Be inspired by the colors of the wine and chocolate — deep red and rich brown — and use these to create a gorgeous look. Cover the table in a chocolate brown tablecloth and give guests brown cotton napkins. Place snacks on red plates and fill red bowls with chocolate covered treats. Arrange wine glasses in neat rows for easy access throughout the tasting. Cheeky wine charms will stimulate conversation and help guests remember which glass is theirs. Light frosted brown candles and dim the lights. Instead of fresh flowers — you don't want the fragrance of flowers taking away the wine's aroma — arrange pots of green leafy plants. Give guests a surprise party favor — boxes filled with chocolate and tied with a pretty bow — as they are leaving.
Normally I always serve a signature cocktail at my parties, but in the case of a wine and chocolate tasting, no hard alcohol is necessary. Instead be sure to have several different types of wine to pair with each chocolate course. If you don't know a lot about wine ask your local wine shop owner to help you. Explain what you are making — chocolate and brie sandwiches and chocolate orange cake — and that you want some wines that will complement these treats.
If you don't have a relationship with a local wine shop owner, check out my tips for pairing chocolate and wine when you read more
After sampling a couple of savory chocolate hors d'oeuvres, treat guests to a scrumptious chocolate orange cake.
No wine and chocolate tasting is complete without a salty sweet combination, so fill bowls with chocolate-almond saltine toffee. Supplement these homemade dishes with store bought chocolate truffles.
For the super scrumptious recipes, read more
If you've ever found yourself in a new city and wished you knew where to go to find a chocolate payload then consider yourself lucky. Just in time for chocolate month, the folks at TasteTV have released The Chocolate Guide, a book on local chocolatiers, chocolate makers, chocolate shops, and more. This edition covers the West Coast — it says it covers California, Utah, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, and British Columbia; however, I found it to be really California-centric — and gives you descriptions and photos of each place. It's a pretty comprehensive guide — to California anyway — and would make for a fun chocolate road-trip tour guide. However, as much as I love drooling over chocolate, I found it to be somewhat frustrating. To see my thoughts on the book, read more
What's on the menu at a wine and chocolate party? Chocolate of course! Have a selection of — sweet and savory, homemade and store-bought — chocolate treats. A variety of chocolate bars is a nice start especially when complemented with chocolate dipped pretzels, chocolate covered nuts, and cocoa nibs. Surprise guests with a pair of homemade chocolate appetizers: savory chocolate napoleons and chocolate and brie paninis. To take a look at these recipes, read more
I saw these Chocolate Coasters ($12.95) and knew they'd be perfect for chocolate month. They come in packs of four and look exactly like hunks of brown or white chocolate. I think they might make a good gift for a super-chocoholic, but I'm not sure I'd want to use them on my coffee table. What do you think? Do you want them in your house?
I was looking for a good dessert to share with you guys, when I came across these Chocolate and Chili Cupcakes With Peanut Butter Frosting by TeamSugar member celebrity_soup. I thought the combination was so intriguing and lovely. I love peanut butter and chocolate, I love chili and chocolate, and yet I've never thought to put the three together. Peanut butter, chili, and chocolate? Sign me up!
Soup says that they're even better than a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, and that they're really fudgy and dangerous. If that has you intrigued then check out her recipe and accompanying pics! To do so, just read more