Scare Up Some Tawny Porto for Halloween

Serious Halloween research in progress!

You’re not required to pull something from the trick or treater’s bag, you can pick up a little treat for yourself!

Over 21 Halloween Fun
October 31 is upon us, and many of us will be handing out candy to costumed kids in an American tradition. I don’t hear about many tricks, like soaped windows anymore, but why risk it?

Whether you have kids yourself, or even if you just have a big bowl of candy to hand out, why not make the evening a little nicer with a spot of Tawny Port?  With all those choices, is there a good Tawny Port pairing?  Cutting to the chase, here are my suggestions for you to try this year!

Disclosure: The wine in this post was provided as a sample. No other payment was involved and all opinions are mine. Thanks to Symington Family Estates for the delicious samples!

Halloween treats and 10 year tawny porto

Top picks for typical Halloween treats: Dow’s 10 year Tawny Porto and Nestle’s Crunch or W&J Graham’s 10 Year Tawny Porto with Peanut M&M’s

Pulling Candy from Your Bowl, or From Your Kids’ Bag
The challenge here is that Port is very sweet, and I find sweet desserts with sweet Port to be just too much, so I look for treats which are a little less sweet. Also, nuts bring out the nutty aromas and flavors in the Tawny Ports, so they are a good choice.

  • Nestle Crunch: less sweet than other chocolates, and the crisps add a nice touch. This was my favorite commercial treat with the Dow’s 10 Year Tawny Porto
  • Peanut M&M’s: High nuts to chocolate ratio, so it’s more nutty than chocolaty. My favorite with the W&J Graham’s 10 Year Tawny Porto.
  • Most candies and chocolates are just too sweet. Sweet and sweet is too much.

For a more sophisticated treat, go for some 80%+ dark chocolate and your favorite roasted nuts.

Adult Chocolates
Maybe you feel guilty for taking candy from children, or maybe you figure you deserve something a little nicer than “fun size” treats, licorice and smarties.  While you’re picking up the Halloween candy, maybe put something in the cart for you. You’re working hard, handing out all that candy after all!  Here are some good ideas.

  • Dark chocolate with > 80% cacao: bittersweet chocolate will be a nice surprise with the Tawny Porto. It’s not particularly nice by itself (intense chocolate flavor, but not very sweet). Shines with the sweetness in the Tawny Porto. Extra power boost? Serve your favorite roasted salted nuts to power up the combo. For me? Cashews. Bam!
  • Chocolate & Orange Peel: at 50-75% cacao, The orange is always a nice addition to chocolate and goes well with the flavors in the Porto.
  • One last possibility: crunch/chop up your favorite nuts and if you want (optional) 80%+ dark chocolate and mix into some good quality vanilla ice cream. Yum.
Dow's Aged 10 Years Old Tawny Porto

Dow’s Aged 10 Years Old Tawny Porto

 

Dow’s aged 10 years Tawny Porto (sample, $ 32 SRP or online here)
Eye: Clear, pale tawny color, can easily read newsprint behind the glass. This wine has a touch of ruby still left in its’ color, just a reddish cast in the
Nose: Clean, medium intensity. Caramel,toffee, vanilla, cashews with a bit of musty basement (in a good way!)
Mouth: Sweet, pronounced flavor intensity with nice acidity and medium- tannins to balance the sweetness. Of the two Tawny Porto’s tasted in this post, the Dow’s is slightly less sweet compared to the Graham’s. The finish seems a combination of sweet with a bit of savory.

W&J Graham's Aged 10 Years Tawny Porto

W&J Graham’s Aged 10 Years Tawny Porto

W&J Graham’s aged 10 years Tawny Porto (sample, $36 SRP or online here)
Eye: Clear, pale tawny color, can easily read newsprint behind the glass. This wine is solid tawny in color, with a caramel colored edge.
Nose: Clean, medium intensity. Vanilla, hazelnuts and walnuts with a whiff of smoke in the background
Mouth: Sweet, pronounced flavor intensity with nice acidity and medium- tannins to balance the sweetness. Of the two Tawny Porto’s tasted in this post, the Graham’s is the sweeter of the two, the finish is sweet with caramel notes lasting a long time.

Tawny Ports are aged in barrel for many years, so their color is pale and they display oxidized notes of nuts and caramel.

Comments
2 Responses to “Scare Up Some Tawny Porto for Halloween”
  1. Lisa Denning says:

    Yum! Tawny port is my favorite, with or without the candy!

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