Everyone is probably very ready to say goodbye to 2020. I know I am looking for ways to make my NYE celebration for one exciting, so I plan on doing a wine/cheese/chocolate pairing party for myself! Obviously, dairy is everywhere in a typical cheese or chocolate pairing menu, but I am doing one that is entirely vegan/dairy free! Here are my recommendations for pairings so you can enjoy too!
Wine: Champagne (Sweet)
Cheese: Vegan Parmesan
My favorite brand of parmesan is Violife. Their parmesan comes as a block so you can shred it or cut slices. The brand Follow Your Heart also has parmesan, but they definitely recreated the "stinky-ness" of it well, so it is a bit overwhelming for me.
Chocolate: "Milk" Chocolate
There are tons of delicious, allergy friendly/vegan "milk" chocolates out there. Two of my favorites are Enjoy Life and No Whey. Both have nice smooth tastes made with rice milk.
Wine: Champagne (Dry)
For soft cheeses, I think you can't go wrong with Miyoko's. Their cheese wheels are absolutely delicious and come in many different flavors.
Chocolate: Difficult pairing
It is difficult to pair dry champagne with chocolate since they will likely make each other taste even more bitter. I'd recommend sticking with the cheese pairing or choosing a sweeter champagne to pair the chocolate with.
Again, I'm going to recommend Violife. They have a fantastic feta block you can buy. I honestly have eaten pieces of it by itself which is not something I can say about all vegan cheese brands.
Chocolate: A good chocolate with a high cacao percentage (70%+)
One of the brands of chocolate I really like, and have reviewed before right here, is Hu Chocolate. They have a variety of chocolates that are higher cacao percentage but aren't too bitter.
Wine: Sauvignon Blanc
Again, Miyoko's will not disappoint you when you are looking for mozzarella. I have used it for a variety of purposes, including making a Margherita pizza, and the taste and texture are on point.
Chocolate: White chocolate, ideally with citrus nodes
So I don't know of any white chocolates on the market that are vegan/dairy free with citrus nodes. You could always make your own, but if you simply want to buy a white chocolate, I'd recommend No Whey or Pascha!
Wine: Pinot Noir
Cheese: Aged Cheddar or Smoked Cheddar
If you are looking for a simple cheddar block, go ahead and grab one from Daiya. They are one of the few brands that I've come across that have hard cheese blocks at the store. If you are looking to lean more towards smoked cheddar, Miyoko's has a soft cheese wheel that is magnificent.
Chocolate: Chocolate with Caramel
Two brands that have delicious chocolates with caramel are Hu Kitchen and Cocomels. I will warn you that Cocomels have a HEAVY coconut taste, so this may throw off the pairing, especially if you aren't a coconut fan.
This is not an inclusive list of every pairing by far. I compiled it from recommendations on vegan pairing lists and traditional pairing lists to try and make sure the allergy friendly aspect of any pairing wouldn't change things. If you want to do your own research for the bottle of wine you already bought, here are some other great cheese and chocolate brands that are allergy friendly/vegan:
Other Cheese Brands that you could pair with:
Follow Your Heart
Kite Hill (for cream cheeses)
Other Chocolate Brands that you could pair with:
Wishing your a safe, fun New Year's Eve! Please stay safe, don't drink and drive. Let's make sure it is a safe holiday for everyone.