You may have young kids who will dress as a pirate and a princess and head out to trick-or-treat, and you plan to raid the booty they bring home. You could be hosting a neighborhood party and want to maintain the festive feel. You might just want an excuse to buy a bag of candy and sit on the sofa with your dog to watch scary movies. Whatever your plans this Halloween weekend, you just might need a little wine to get you through. Here are some fun and tasty pairings of candy with wines!
Candy Corn and Chardonnay
Love it or hate it, candy corn is a sweet, buttery-tasting with a waxy texture. Pairing it with an oaked Chardonnay will complement the candy nicely without being overpowering. The Chardonnay will also soften the pure sugar flavor. Look for Hilmy Cellars 2021 Chardonnay (and as a plus, this was the vintage I worked in the cellar at Hilmy, so there’s a little of my love in this wine!)
Skittles and Sauvignon Blanc
Skittles are awesomely fruity candies, but the sweetness can be a bit much. A dry wine will cut through all of the sweetness. Sauvignon Blanc is perfect because the natural acidity will tone down the sugar and complement the fruitiness. Look for Reddy Vineyards 2022 Petals & Clay Sauvignon Blanc.
Hershey’s and Zinfandel
Hershey’s is the sweet milk chocolate candy bar we all grew up on. Pair it with a rich red Zinfandel. The jammy qualities of the wine will balance the sweet chocolate, making you taste chocolate-covered berries with every sip. The Ab Astris Winery 2019 Zinfandel nicely balances the traditional chocolate flavors and adds a bit more complexity to the tasty morsel.
Starbursts and Bubbles
Starbursts are chewy, fruity candies with a slight tartness. Pairing them with a slightly sweet wine like Muscat, known for orange flavors and aromas, can help enhance the citrus in the candy while balancing out the sweetness in the wine. And a sparkling version of the wine is even better because the bubbles dampen the sweetness of the candy. Look for Serrano Wine 2022 Sparkling Orange Muscat.
Reese’s and Merlot
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are a perfect blend of sweet and salty. Milk chocolate is sweet and creamy, while peanuts have salt and fat. A lush, slightly tannic red blend can have the right mouthfeel with complementary aromas of dark fruit to pair wonderfully with Reese’s. Stop by Longhorn Cellars near Fredericksburg for the 2019 Estate Reserve Merlot.
Gummy Worms and Rosé
Gummy worms are fruity, sweet, and tart but can taste plain after a handful. Partner them with rosé to give variety to the taste buds. The red fruit flavors of the rosé will enhance more of the fruitiness in the gummies. The acid in the wine will give your tongue just the kick it needs to fully enjoy the candies. Try the Whisper Path Cellars 2019 San Antonio Rosé (which is so good on its own, you may not even eat the gummies!).
Snickers and Tempranillo
Snickers Bars are a complex candy with peanuts, caramel, nougat, and chocolate, so you need something equally complex to draw out each of the candy’s flavors. Tempranillo gives the needed complexity. Notes of dark fruits contrast the saltiness of the nuts, while tannins oppose the creamy texture of the nougat, and the dry mouthfeel is complemented by the sweetness of the candy bar. Try Texas Heritage Vineyard 2019 Estate Tempranillo.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with different candies alongside your favorite wine. Every palate is different, and you may discover something spectacular – with or without the ghosts and ghouls!